I am 30 and I survived Suicide
When I was younger I had people in my life that caused great emotional pain with their words and actions that they chose. Though the intent was never to cause hurt and pain, they did not realize that negative words coming from someone you love, when directed at you, can be one of the most damaging things.
The pains of my childhood, feeling like I couldn’t always express who I was and feeling as if every time I let someone get close I would get hurt or we would grow apart, left me not wanting to let anyone in. The few times that I did let someone in, I would end up trusting the wrong person and end up being manipulated; this led me to become even more closed off.
I created a rude, angry shell and didn’t allow many to see that I was actually one of the biggest sweethearts you would ever meet. Not feeling that I could be myself created a very lonely life for me, a life that I didn’t feel was worth living.
Between the ages of fifteen and twenty, I wrote three letters to my family saying my goodbyes. Of the three letters they received one. I remember the feelings I had every time I wrote a letter. Tired of being in tears and in pain and ready to give up because I didn’t feel that I had a life worth living. There were countless number of days that I thought about slitting my wrists, driving into cinder block walls and overdosing. If you name it, I probably thought about it at some point. I felt alone, felt that there was something wrong with me for feeling the way I did. I thought no one would ever understand what I was going through and I felt too ashamed and afraid to ask for help.
The last time I tried to take my own life was when I was twenty. I look at that day now as the lowest point in my life, but also my second chance at life. I will never forget being in the hospital taking the chance to express some things I held inside for so long. I will never forget the pain that I put on a loved face for trying to take my own live.
There were words that were said that saved me and turned my life in a new direction. At that moment I vowed to never again try to take my own life and to do everything that I could to heal. Because I never wanted to put the look of hurt and pain on a loved ones face again.
Unfortunately, going to a therapist and taking medication didn’t work for me. I had to find other things that helped to keep my promise to myself; here are some of them:
· I bought a poster identical to one that I saw in the hospital and put it on wall and swore I wouldn’t take it down until the suicidal thoughts went away. It had a wave and said “Change. If you are not riding the wave of change… you’ll find yourself beneath it”.
· I had my daddy make me a little princess ring that says “Daddy’s Girl” so every time I would feel I needed a little reminder of who I was, I could look down and remember that I have the strength to keep going.
· Putting myself through college: Every step of the way I was proving to myself that I am worth it and I can do anything. I forced myself to join a student organization and let people get to know me even though it was completely terrifying. I was able to get comfortable being who I was.
Over the years I learned some valuable lessons as well. These lessons were some of the most healing:
· I learned to realize that forgiving people for the hurt that they cause isn’t always for them. Forgiving is a way to heal yourself. When you stop holding on to anger and pain you can move on.
· Loving someone else more than I loved myself kept me alive for many years, but I wasn’t truly happy until I learned to love myself, be proud of who I am, and realize that all we can do is be the best version of ourselves, continuing to learn and grow everyday.
· I learned to lean on loved ones when I was going through a hard time and ask for help when I needed support or needed a reminder that I’m a “badass that can do anything.”
Even though I have tools and the strength to keep going and keep healing, for years my greatest fear was one day something or someone would do or say something to hurt me to the point that I didn’t want to keep living.
About a year and a half ago that fear came to life. There was someone that I leaned on for years when I was going through a hard time. Somehow, whenever I got upset, they knew exactly what to say to make me feel better. I loved this person so much for helping to keep me safe from myself. One day, they said the worst thing possible during a flight. Basically, they said I was totally and completely “replaceable.” In that moment I felt more pain than I had in years and extremely hurt. Of all the people in my life, and all the hurtful things I’d experienced, this was without a doubt one of the worst. How could someone, that claimed to love you and knows about all about your past and your battles with suicide, look at you straight in the face and basically say you are “replaceable?”
Going through this was painful but I’m grateful that these things were said. It made me realized that if I can hear that I’m replaceable by someone that I loved, the person that helped heal many wounds, and still continue to love myself despite what was said, I could get through anything. I don’t need to fear myself and fear that one day I might not be strong enough and take my own life. I am invincible.
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