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Friends Forever - a true story

Best Friends Forever - a true story

Today, like many days, mental health is really on my mind. I’d like to tell you the story of a friend I had a few years ago. (It’s long, but it would mean the world to me if you read it.)

You can skip directly to the TL:DR (too long:didn’t read) at the very end if you want.

I met “Sarah” when we both joined an online mental health support group. From her profile picture, I could tell she’d been through a lot for a 36 year old. Sarah was bald, very overweight and she used oxygen. She also now had a bipolar disorder diagnosis and so did I (I was diagnosed in 1999).

I didn’t expect that Sarah would feel up to posting much, but she did, and she was wickedly funny. We hit it off right away. It wasn’t long before we exchanged phone numbers and soon we were chatting nearly every day. Often we’d FaceTime so we could see each other’s faces and share our lives.

We became so close so fast that I felt like I had known Sarah all my life. I learned that she had diabetes, an underactive thyroid, scarred lungs and she had beaten a battle with breast cancer. I was amazed by her and her strength. I began confiding in her and it wasn’t long before I was planning a trip to her city.

One day Sarah didn’t show up to post in our support group, like she had every day. I left her several messages there and later tried her phone but got no answer. I figured she’d contact me when she had a moment.

Two days went by with no word from her. I got worried, but since we’d met online and she lived about 1000 miles away from me, I hadn’t had a chance to visit. I had no one from her family to contact or any other friends who knew her.

I never heard from Sarah again. I missed her terribly and couldn’t quite believe she had ghosted me, but eventually of course I went on with my life.

Three months later, I got a call from a strange number. I don’t usually answer those, but this time something (God?) told me to answer. It was a woman who asked my name and then asked me if I knew her daughter Sarah.

I told her absolutely I did and that I was so glad she’d called because Sarah and I had lost touch. I asked her how she had gotten my number and she told me from Sarah. She then started crying and my heart fell to the floor.

“Sarah’s cancer has come back, hasn’t it.” I was so upset that I started shaking.

“No. Sarah died by suicide a month ago,” her mom finally choked out.

I was stunned. I couldn’t form words. Sure, Sarah and I were both bipolar, and had talked about her other illnesses too, but she was so strong and funny and friendly!

I said, “I thought you told me Sarah had given you my number.” She said, “she did, in a roundabout way. I found it in her phone when I got it back from Verizon and got access to it. I read through your messages and realized you were a close friend.” I confirmed I was and gave her a brief rundown of our friendship.

She then said, “Please tell me about my daughter.”

I spent the next hour and a half telling her everything her daughter and I had shared. We both cried. There were a lot of things she didn’t know about her life in recent years (after all, Sarah was 36 and living on her own).

As Sarah’s mental health apparently declined, she had withdrawn from her family. I was completely surprised because Sarah told me she was close to her family. Plus she was always smiling and funny and upbeat when we spoke or FaceTimed. Her mother explained to me that Sarah had always hidden the worst parts of her mental and physical illnesses and she had even died quietly by overdosing on her insulin.

Sarah’s mom told me, “we do have reason to believe she tried to change her mind at the last minute. She was found with an unlit cigarette in her mouth just steps from the outside door to her apartment building. We think she was going to ask someone for help by getting a light from them outside and asking for them to call 911. But her blood sugar bottomed out and she collapsed.”

When I hung up the phone, I was so heartbroken. I couldn’t believe that such a vibrant soul was gone from the world. I looked back at our messages, still in shock. I couldn’t believe that my life had been touched again by suicide when I myself was bipolar and also a crisis counselor. This was the third suicide among my friends, which is part of the reason I am a crisis counselor and certified in Psychological First Aid.

I decided I needed to do something, anything to remember her by. At that time I ran a Facebook page called the Empathetrix on which I posted my inspirational collage art for my 16,000 followers. I decided to do one for Sarah. It is attached.

The picture shows a little girl headed towards a white light. She’s carrying a backpack and on it is “I am in pain.” There is an angel crying, and she is carrying a teddy bear. Sarah slept with one every night. The quote by CS Lewis reads, “To love at all is to be vulnerable.”

I miss you, Sarah. I’m sorry that I didn’t know you were in such pain. I’m sorry you didn’t feel like you could tell anyone. I won’t forget you.

[TL:DR: I had a friend I met online in a mental health support group who ghosted me after several months and I didn’t know why until her mother called me and told me she died by suicide by overdosing on insulin. I made the attached collage for her.]

#MentalHealth #SuicidePrevention #BipolarDisorder #Friendship #MightyTogether #mightywriters #MightyStories #ChronicIllness #CheckInWithMe #BipolarDepression #Depression

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How do i forget you?

How do I forget you?
How do I forget your smile when the thought of it brings me so much joy?
How do I forget the way you laughed when the memory of it makes me so happy?
How do I forget the way you mocked my accent when i still laugh about it.
How do I forget the way we held each other when it's all I feel at night?
How do I forget the way you looked at us in the mirror when I can't help but see your reflection when you're not there.
How do I forget the girl who brought me unimaginable joy by just being in your presence.
It's been months since we said goodbye, we still talk but the memories of us haunt me every night.
I want to forget how I feel , but I could never forget you....
You will always have that spot in my heart.

#missher #missus #Depression #Memories #longdistancelove #forgetyou #WritingThroughIt #mightywriters

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Follow me to read the full article. 🥰

I wrote this today in hopes to post it here on The Mighty, it happens to be a little too long so this is page one of three. If you'd like to read the entire article please come follow my page and tell me what you think of the first real thing I have written in a long time. I hope to hear all of your feedback. ✨

#ComplexPTSD #Anxiety #PathtoHealing #coping #Outlet #mightywriters #heal #Failinghealthcare #mentalhealthwarrior

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I need support going through a really hard time with anxiety and dealing with several health issues a pinched nerve in my neck and shoulder and a t

Thrown out back with sinus infection. Who will support me and leave me positive uplifting messages of care love support and healing? #PinchedNerve #DistractMe #Upallnight #BipolarDisorder #Bipolar2Disorder #BipolarDepression #PTSD #CPTSD #CPTSDinrelationships #DBT #Fibromyaliga #Fibromyalgia #Spoonie #SpoonieProblems #spoonielife #Spoonies #HashimotosThyroiditis #MyalgicEncephalomyelitis #VocalCordDysfunction #PolycysticOvarySyndrome #MyalgicEncephalomyelitis #Yoga #Photography #Friends #Love #Hugs #CheckInWithMe #52SmallThings #Selfcare #Selflove #Sports #walks #PhysicalTherapy #ObsessiveCompulsiveDisorder #ADHD #HypothyroidismUnderactiveThyroidDisease #ChronicPain #ChronicIllness #DatingWithAChronicIllness #Disability #Depression #Hope #Volunteer #MightyQuestions #MightyTogether #MightyMusic #MightyPoets #mightywarriors #mightywriters #MightyBookClub #TheMighty #TheMightyTakeaway #Chatspace back story is my ptsd is high bc my neighbor killed themselves in my building a year ago and my anxiety is high


Having meltdown please help anxiety cage sleep accidentally ate hummus from fridge before o saw the date on it was august 2020 now I’m nauseous and

I’m freaking out stomach nausea from eating old hummus ok had croutons and 3 vegi crackers to settle stomach am I ok from eating the old hummus my worries are there and I can’t ca myself down enough to sleep will I be ok or do u die from accidentally eating hummus from late aug I can’t sleep and am scared bc of nausea #PTSD #Selfcare #CPTSD #CPTSDinrelationships #CheckInWithMe #checkinginwithme #Upallnight #Chatspace #Hugs #Friends #BorderlinePersonalityDisorder #bpdawareness #BPDDiagnosis #CPTSDinrelationships #help #BipolarDisorder #Disability #Chat #PinchedNerve #PTSDSupportAndRecovery #PTSDawareness #Fibromyaliga #Fibromyalgia #MyalgicEncephalomyelitis #PolycysticOvarySyndrome #Aspergers #AspergersSyndrome #Spoonie #SpoonieProblems #Spoonies #Aspie #Art #Anxiety #GeneralizedAnxietyDisorder #GastroesophagealRefluxDisease #HashimotosThyroiditis #HypothyroidismUnderactiveThyroidDisease #MightyQuestions #TheMightyTakeaway #MightyTogether #MightyMusic #mightymen #mightywarriors #mightywriters #MightyMoms #MightyMail #mightytoghter #DBT #DatingWithAChronicIllness #ChronicIllness #ChronicPain #Dating #Depression #datingdisabilities #Disabililty #disablity #checkinonme #Walking #52SmallThings #30Days30Stories #30daysofteal #Healthy #SaveMe #Company

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Your Mess is Welcome Here #MentalHealth #Depression

The truth is something that can be heavy, yet it can truly free you in ways beyond what you imagine. When the truth is hidden, it can tear apart families, trust, homes and happiness.

There is something about telling the truth—to yourself, to others—for the first time that really has an ability to cleanse the cobwebs from your heart. There is a freedom in knowing the truth, accepting it, and moving on. It no longer has a hold on you. It can no longer define you.

longer define you.

I was sexually assaulted as a child. That truth is horrible, hurtful, and heavy, but it is not one that keeps me cowering in the shadows any longer. John 8:32 tells us that the truth will set you free. And the very first time I found myself admitting the truth to myself and to someone else, I felt freer than I had ever felt.

The first time I told the story of my abuse was five years ago. And in the last five years, I’ve seen God do incredible things.

I’ve learned to trust again.

I’ve learned the difference between good touch and bad touch, and how to ask for and receive good touch from my husband.

I’ve learned that my value is not in the things that were done to me, but in who I am in Christ.

I’ve learned who that little girl inside of me is, and how to listen to her and take care of her.

I’ve learned that healing is a priority; seeking help is not only good but necessary.

I’ve learned who to talk to about my experiences, and how to talk to them about it.

And oh my gosh, healing is not easy.

I still struggle with depression and anxiety.

I fight to reclaim my self-worth on a daily basis.

I cry, I pray, I regress.

But I don’t stop. I won’t stop. This is the most important journey I’ve ever embarked on.

Your journey is different, I’m sure. There may be some similarities in our stories, though. If there are, I am truly sorry for the pain you have experienced.

It is not your fault, nor was it ever your fault.

My desire is for this blog to be a safe place for you and for others who carry the burden of a horrible injustice or a crippling stigma. This is a place of acceptance and peace, where stigmas and labels are pushed aside and we can be ourselves.

Here, I hope and pray you will learn three of the most important truths I’ve learned in my healing journey.

Read the rest here: heardbelievedloved.com/blog/the-hbl-journey-your-mess-is-welcome-here

Love & prayers
#Anxiety #mentalhealthjourney #mightywriters #blogger #Christian #Christianity #encouragement #CheerMeOn #adolescent sexual molestation trauma #SexualAbuseSurvivors #SexualTrauma

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Join me for a journing workshop, today @ 5 pm PST/8 pm EST

Hey Mighties, join me today for a journaling session! Let’s get some of this tension and anxiety OUT (I know I need it too.)

Make sure you download Zoom beforehand if you haven’t already. Here’s the link we’ll be using: zoom.us/j/6413387979

^please don’t click until it’s time to start!

#COVID19 #Anxiety #Depression #MentalHealth #ChronicIllness #Disability #Autism #mightywriters


To my new #WritingThroughIt family!

Thank you to the small but Mighty group of writers who showed up for today's writing workshop! You all inspire me. I'm excited to chat more this week with our daily challenges for those who want to participate. ✨ You can use this hashtag to workshop writing ideas and share frustrations + dreams. Talk to everyone soon!

#Writing #mightywriters


What stories do you want to see our #mightycontributors write about?

Our wonderful contributors are always looking for ideas so they can bring you stories about topics and themes you care about. What do you want to see more posts about on The Mighty?

#MentalHealth #ChronicIllness #Depression #RareDisease #Disability #ChronicPain #MightyTogether #MightyPoets #ThisIsMyStory #mightywriters