I said no, not yet, Sophie is in the middle of GCSEs and she reads my blog. She had her last one yesterday, said it was easy. Good girl!
Spencer. Every time I see his face RT’d into my TL I feel sad. Never met him, 10 years of online chat. From his social medial presence, he would’ve been one of the last people I would expect to take their own life. An intelligent, charming man with a loving partner and girls he adored. He was in constant pain, felt a burden to others and we tried to make light of our situations.
We never really know what’s going on inside others’ heads. The pain, the mental torture, the self-cruelty.
So here’s the blog he asked if I would write.
If I ever see someone tweet their depression or pain, especially when it sounds suicidal, I’ll always be in your DMs. I don’t want to sometimes (most times), but I can’t let a tweet like that sit there, especially if no one is responding. I have no magic words to take away the pain (IF ONLY!) but will try and provide distraction. And sometimes (although not every time) a brief few minutes of someone else distracting you for precious seconds away from the self-loathing can help a tiny bit. Wouldn’t wish it on my worst enemy.
About a month after my 10 months at the Head Injury Therapy Unit finished, Sophie was with her dad & I spent a weekend wondering how I could make my death look like an accident. Its hard for me to get back into that mindset now and explain it, (thankfully, long may it continue) but I’ll try.
I didn’t want to leave HITU. I was with people who understood how and why my brain now acted differently. The over-sharing (what, me?!), the heightened emotions, the fear, the rage, I felt safe. Now I was on my own, not the ‘survivor who could turn any problem around by chatting my way out of it’ person I once was.
At the last hour I’d found a home for us to live in (after losing job and being given 4 weeks to get out) which was miraculous really. The thought of having to live somewhere without Bailey and how it would affect Sophie was too much.
We moved in. I’d get lost and panicky in my new surroundings and sobbed every single day. Sometimes all day long. Every day for 2 years. And I really hate that 2 years of my life were spent feeling like that.
I was trying to hide it from Sophie. It was so hard. Trying to paste on a smile, to act ‘normal’, when my inner turmoil was crucifying me. Felt an absolute failure. A terrible person. I’d failed at my marriage, I’d failed at keeping a job and a roof over our heads. I would go back through every event in my life and list every single failure that had brought me to this place today. The physical pain was constant and relentless. I wasn’t sleeping or eating.
And I hated life. Really hated it. Angry that I was surviving, not living. What did I ever do to deserve life to be so cruel? How is it fair?
But I couldn’t because of Sophie. As much as I told myself she had a loving dad and step-mum and a much bigger bedroom at their house(!), I know how much she adores me and the pain it would cause. I’m the one person who understands her, she says. Yeah sorry about that, I understand because I gave you my shitty weird genes! Its been the two of us since she was 3 and she’s my world. But it still didn’t stop me wondering how to end it, anything to stop the constant physical and mental pain. My medical notes say Sophie was my protector (I think? can’t remember the word!), and that I wouldn’t take my life because of her. Truth.
I felt a burden to her. She still preps fruit and veg for me, carries shopping, but now I see it as teaching her life skills rather than ruining her life.
The death by accident wondering weekend – Sophie was with her dad, I was walking Bailey around the field listening to Last Goodbye by The Enemy and Sign of the Times by Harry Styles (DO NOT DO THIS) and I remember thinking surely there is no way I can sink any further. This is the low point of my entire life. Total misery. Everyone else has life all sussed, except for me. All I have is pain. Our brains are evil and hate us. I never want to feel like that ever again, surely at rock bottom the only way is up.
I was sent off to a Mental Health Unit Assessor. Turns out he went to the same school as me, few years older and the PE teacher we all thought was a paedo, WAS a paedo and was eventually charged, he said. Anyway(!) he gave me some relaxation CDs (still in their dusty cases) and said I needed to be put on the top notch, brand new, all singing & dancing new antidepressants. With zero side effects. And some CBT therapy. Which was an absolute waste of time – CBT therapist made me feel worse, not better. Its difficult to train your brain when its damaged and the wires are loose & scrambled.
Whether those glowing reports of the drugs I currently take acted as a placebo or not, I don’t care. They worked. Eventually. And as I started to perk up, I started finding other things to lift me. Taking that wrong turn and finding the woods – that was meant to be. I take such happiness from little things these days. Meet a happy friendly dog in the woods? Day made. Constantly marvel at the wonders of nature around me. And it all adds up. Okay, maybe rewarding myself with sugar isn’t always the best (meringues anyone?!) but its keeping me here. All these little things that I now appreciate are giving me hope and calm. Still the real fear of homelessness but now I’m telling myself that what will be will be, nothing is scarier & more harmful than your own thoughts, whatever happens we will get through it.
My Pursuit of Happiness blogs – The Secret – I’m trying that daily. When I remember(!) Trying to attract positive vibes. The bad vibes can jog on.
And life is short and I’m getting older fast. Every second spent worrying about things that haven’t happened yet is precious life time wasted. I feel SO lucky that I’ve reached this point & can see life this way again. I just wish I’d told Spencer he’d reach it too.