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What I Realized After Almost Dying by Suicide This Christmas Eve

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Editor's Note

If you experience suicidal thoughts or have lost someone to suicide, the following post could be potentially triggering. You can contact the Crisis Text Line by texting “START” to 741741.

They say suicide is selfish. I can see why. However, one must keep in mind that suicide is done only when one is in the darkness so far that they can’t see what is directly in front of them.

Let me explain.

I always believed suicide was the answer to my suffering and pain. I always believed in the way out of the darkness, the thoughts telling me I wasn’t worthy and I’d never be enough, the way to end the immense pain I experienced day in, day out. I never saw suicide as selfish, and I stand by that. It’s not selfish; rather it hurts the ones who love you, the ones you leave behind.

I had nothing to leave behind before. Maybe my two dogs, but I had no individual in my life whom I could leave behind. I could always find a place for my two dogs. My service dog could be trained again and given to a more capable and deserving owner. My little girl could be given back to her rescue, or my friend could take her in. Then, I’d be free to leave this earth, because I believed I had nothing left to give in this life.

Since Thanksgiving, I haven’t been coping well. When I saw my best friend, I would put on a brave face for him and would tell him the little things bothering me — a conversation with my mother, somebody judging me when I’m at work with my service dog – but nothing major going on in my head. I didn’t want to “burden” him any more than I had already done. Then, Christmas Eve, when everyone was enjoying time with their families, I was alone in my apartment. I put a blanket on the floor, grabbed my weighted blanket, and prepared my suicide method. I texted my best friend that I was sorry, that I was sorry I had been a burden to him and he needed to have a friend in his life who didn’t put so much strain on him all the time. I was essentially saying goodbye.

For whatever reason, maybe because I’m not meant to leave this earth yet, my best friend texted back immediately. He knew something was up and because of the kindness in his heart, his heart of gold, the person he just is, he wouldn’t give up. He called and got it out of me that I had just gone through with my suicide plan.

While he was upset and frustrated, he knew he had to make sure I was safe. He told me what to do. He made me realize what I had done. I didn’t think of it much, because to me, I thought I was just going into a deep sleep.

After following his advice, I drove myself to the ER a few miles from my place. I left my two dogs with the light on, without taking them out or thinking things through. While my best friend was upset with me, he didn’t let me down. He texted me as often as he could, asking for updates and told me he would check on the pups in the morning.

I spent Christmas day in the ER on an involuntary psychiatric hold. I was then transported to a crisis stabilization unit where I was evaluated and finally discharged to go back to life, 48 hours after all this started.

Through this all, my best friend was by my side. I can’t stop apologizing to him, because I am sure I ruined Christmas for him. I’m sure I was more trouble than I am worth and I don’t deserve any of this.

I’ve lost the train of thought I had from the beginning of this post. However, I can say since being discharged, I ate two complete, well-rounded meals for the first time in as long as I can remember. I got back to my apartment, let my two dogs sniff me and make sure I’m me, in one piece, and sat down with my back against the futon. I realized something that hasn’t hit me, well, ever: Everything I need is right in front of me, staring me down, waiting for me to realize they are there for me, unconditionally. Chasing down approval and acceptance from people who aren’t ever going to change and are unwilling to see me as the individual I am only sets me up for disappointment, being let down, ultimately being hurt and in this case, almost costing my life.

photo of contributor's black labrador dog

Sometimes, it takes a wake-up call to make you realize that everything you need is in front of your eyes; all you have to do is open them and let them in. It’s an uphill battle from here, but it’s one I’m going to fight, because it’s not my time to go yet.

To my best friend: I love you more than I can ever tell you. I know you weren’t some stranger I happened upon one day. You were placed directly in my path for a reason and I’m indebted to you for the rest of my life, as I owe you my life. You saved me from myself this final time and I don’t know what else to say but I’m sorry. I’m so sorry for what I did. Just know, I love you and I mean it with my whole heart.

Photo by Alex Boyd on Unsplash

Originally published: January 3, 2019
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