Sitting on the bathroom floor puking my guts out, I made a resolution that I intended to keep: I would never ever try to commit suicide again. At the time I didn’t know if I had been successful at stopping the pills from killing me, but I had the sudden realization that I didn’t really want to die. No one was worth dying for, not even someone whom I loved with all my heart. So I stopped, hid the suicide note under the bed, and went to the hospital in the morning to get my stomach pumped.
It all started at age 14 when I met someone that I fell madly in love with. At the time I thought I knew it all and after seven years of dating, I found out that I didn’t. Suffice it to say that I married for love and purposefully turned a blind eye to what everyone was telling me: that he wasn’t the right person for me. To make a long story short, after one week of marriage I was wrongfully accused of cheating and before it had even started, my marriage had effectively ended.
Ultimately I decided to take my life because I had bought into the words that my husband threw at me: that I wasn’t worthy, that I was trash, that I didn’t deserve to be alive. After storming out of the house vowing to find a gun to come and kill me, I decided that I would rather do it myself. I gathered all the pills in the house and took as many as I could before my body reacted and started expelling them from my system.
I had already taken quite a bit of pills before I began questioning what I was doing. From somewhere deep within me, my rational mind kicked in and I realized that what I was doing wasn’t the answer. I wanted the pain and the situation to stop. I didn’t want to die. Not really. And if I didn’t want to die then no one was going to kill me either.
To make a long story short, my husband drove me to the hospital, I went immediately to a psychiatrist who declared me mentally healthy, and one month later I had my freedom. He went to jail and I went back to college.
It took a while to piece myself back together, but I did and now I’m that much stronger for having had the experience. So how did I do it? What did I do to get me out of the depression and to gain back some of the self love that I had lost?
1. I sat still but kept my hands busy. I kept myself occupied at work during the day and in the evening I took up painting ceramics. I didn’t want to talk to anyone and so I didn’t. I started by painting a crucifix, then angels. Next came a mermaid followed by a dragon. I didn’t put too much thought into what I would paint, I just picked what called out to me. Each piece that I painted healed me in a way that no psychiatrist ever could. The crucifix represented suffering and sacrifice. The angels meant softness and smiles. The mermaid represented the beauty that I had lost. The dragon represented strength and determination. By the time I got halfway through the dragon, I was ready to pick up my life where I had left off.
2. I made sure to never be alone. Whether I wanted to speak to anyone or not, I felt it necessary and wise to surround myself with people. If I couldn’t sleep at night I would find someone who was still up and I’d quietly sit nearby. Or I would simply wake up my roommate. Everyone respected my silence but they were also quick to offer a hug and a loving word whenever I needed it. Strangers just thought I was shy and went the extra mile to make me feel welcome around them.
3. I pursued one of my life’s goals. I was on a year-long leave of absence from college and I decided that I needed to go back. Obtaining as much learning as I can has always been my passion and graduating from college had always been one of many goals. It turned out to be perfect. Between classes and homework and work, I had very little time to be depressed.
4. I surrounded myself with happy people that didn’t know my story. I didn’t want any pity and I didn’t want to discuss what had happened. I made sure that I hung out with people who knew nothing about me and this gave me the chance to reinvent myself. This helped me immensely to quickly become who I wanted to be.
5. I never saw him again. It’s been over 10 years and I have not seen him once. I kept hearing stories of people who had gone back to damaging relationships and I didn’t want to be tempted in any way. So I disappeared from his life and he disappeared from mine.
6. I read about other people’s experiences. I picked up every book I could find and felt inspiration by people who had had similar experiences but had pulled themselves out of it. I realized that I wasn’t alone. I made a mental note of the ways in which the characters in the books were able to pull themselves out of depressions and back into the land of self love, and I implemented them slowly.
Have I ever been tempted to take my life again? Sure. I think we’ve all experienced these thoughts at one time or another, especially at the darkest hours. However, all I have to do is remember what it actually felt like to be one inch from losing your life and this stops me in my tracks. I also read somewhere something that has helped me greatly. I don’t remember the source but it said that if we commit suicide we are destined to keep coming back and repeating the exact same life until we are able to complete it. I don’t know about you but the thought of having to go through some of those moments again is enough for me to want to finish it the right way now. I don’t know if it’s true or not but I definitely don’t want to find out.
So why am I sharing this story now? Soulgineering is about growth and self love. It is about sharing stories so that others can be inspired and encouraged by them. Something whispered in my ear tonight and told me that my story needs to be told because someone out there really needs it. So whoever you are, if my story helps you in any way, then it was all worth it.