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Going to the Hospital for Suicidal Thoughts Was Hard – but Leaving Was Harder

“My arm is a spider web, my brain is a raging fire and anyone who wants to tell me I’m fine doesn’t know what’s going on in my mind.”

That is what I wrote on Nov. 13, not knowing that just four days later my friends and colleagues would be taking me to the ER and I would be getting admitted into the Crisis Stabilization Unit (CSU) at the hospital for suicidal thoughts.

As I sat in the waiting room, all I wanted to do was run. Even though my mind was racing and I was visibly shaking, it was like I had become immobilized by what I had become. I kept getting taken back to answer the same questions over and over again, all while denying what I knew what was about to happen, denying that I had allowed myself to fall this far. What I didn’t know at the time was that taking that step and going to the hospital was going to be the best thing I had ever done for myself.

Those four nights and three days were some of the toughest I had ever had. The small room with no windows made me feel like I was trapped in my own mind, stuck with my thoughts with no way of getting them out. The isolation haunted me like a cold chill that you just can’t shake. Each night trying to fall asleep with the light buzzing overhead and the loud noises in the hallway made it impossible for my anxiety to shut off.

As I spent those days drowning in my thoughts, drowning in the realization of what was actually happening, those who were supporting me in this situation kept me afloat. It was a time that showed who would always be there no matter if I were sinking or swimming. Without them, the waves of my emotions may have taken over.

My emotions were mixed as it came time to leave. I didn’t know just what my life what going to be like on the outside. To be honest, I was scared to finally face my struggles in the open space of my everyday life.

Things were not easy, and I tried to jump into things head first, ignoring the thoughts that were still running through my mind. I pushed myself to pretend everything was fine. I thought I was fine. I thought I was ready, but the longer I tried telling myself this, the worse I actually got.

Until, finally, I broke. The details are fuzzy, and I’m not sure if the details actually are not there or if I am subconsciously choosing not to remember them. Yet, it was at that point that I learned what rock bottom really was.

Hitting this point and the events of that day are things I am choosing not to dwell on. They are ghosts that I am not allowing to trap me in a negative mindset. The road moving back up has not been easy, but one thing I have learned is that life is not always going to give you that straight path. The things I have learned about myself from these experiences are invaluable. I can say that I have grown a new set of wings that are only going to allow me to keep soaring upward.

If you or someone you know needs help, visit our suicide prevention resources page.

If you need support right now, call the Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-8255. You can reach the Crisis Text Line by texting “START” to 741-741.

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Image via Thinkstock.