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September 11, 2020

A Message for those who have Struggled with Suicidal Thoughts.

It’s okay to feel like you don’t want to be here. 

It’s hard being here sometimes. 

Human-ing is hard.

I want you to know that you’re not alone. A lot of people struggle with these types of thoughtsI used to think I was the only one.

It was a chilly November, and I lay in the bathtub sobbing. I had been in there for hours, and the once-hot bath had gone cold. I felt numb and lifeless. All I wanted to do was figure out how to leave this world, and no one, not one person in my life, would ever have guessed it. 

I was the one who listened to everyone else. The helper. The strong one. 

After the loss of miscarriages, doctors told me I would probably never have a child, and I felt broken. I was continually mourning the dream of the life I thought I would live. My marriage was falling apart, I was exhausted, and I didn’t want to be here anymore.

In the bath that morning, one by one, I began to picture leaving everyone I loved. I envisioned what would happen after I was gone.

One thought kept me here. Only one. I could justify leaving every other person I knew, but my Nana, what about my Nana? She was the one person I felt unconditionally loved by in my life. When I visualized my funeral and life after I was gone, it was the heartbreak in my Nana’s eyes that woke me up to my soul. Her love brought me back, and she doesn’t even know it. 

I thought of my grandmother and her life path. It occurred to me that my very existence was a part of her prayer for a better life. Maybe we’re all the prayers and dreams of our ancestors, here for a reason.

As I lay there in the cold mix of water and tears, the sun started to shine in through a crack in the blinds. It was so bright that it snapped me out of my trance. I closed my eyes, and I felt the warmth of the sun on my face. I stood up, and I opened the blinds. I saw the sunlight sparkling through the vibrant autumn leaves, and I took a deep breath. 

I felt myself coming back into my body again, and I heard my ancestors’ whispers telling me to hold on.

“Don’t miss it,” they said.

I stared out the window in awe of the breathtaking colours of fall. It felt as though I was seeing them all for the first time. Another deep breath and the decision to stay. Maybe for my Nana, maybe for the sun’s warmth—or maybe because my mind was finally quiet enough to let my heart hear the truth: I was worthy of love and worthy of living.

I was hope, and I was prayer, and my story wasn’t over. 

I didn’t know it yet, but my life’s biggest miracles were on their way to me, and I almost missed them. I almost missed so much. I would have missed my son’s birth after 10 years of trying and my daughter’s birth six years later. I would have missed the friends I had yet to meet, the dreams I had yet to dream, and the many lives I had yet to change and be changed by. 

On that chilly November day, something needed to die in my life, but it wasn’t me. It was the old stories I had about myself. The thoughts of my unworthiness. The belief that I was broken. 

I was feeling stuck in my life, and day after day, I was going through the motions. I was abandoning myself, shaming myself, and feeling less than. I was letting the noise of the world be louder than the voice of my soul. All of that needed to die, but I did not. 

It is a resilient spirit who chooses to stay here and live—in the pain, in the unknowing, in the doubt. And we are resilient, you and I. Look at all that you’ve been through so far, and here you are today, now. Here, with the opportunity to write a new story—a beautiful story—a story that changes your entire life and ripples out to change and touch the lives of everyone you meet. 

What is it in your life that needs to die, so that you can fully live? 

It’s not you. 

I promise you that. It wasn’t me, and it’s not you. 

If you are running low on hope, borrow mine. 

You’re not broken; you’re just being broken open. Maybe if we can talk about this, we can let the light in and shine out the shame that sits in the silence of all of these things that we feel we can’t talk about. 

You and I are still here. We don’t have to miss anything. 

I am writing this today because love brought me back to myself, and it can bring you back too.

When times are hard, and fear is high, I close my eyes, and I feel the strength, the prayers, and the dreams of my ancestors in every cell of my being. 

Give voice to your pain and your struggles. Talk to someone you trust. Reach out for support. You don’t have to carry them alone. Shine the light of love on them and know that they are not signs of weakness; they are evidence of your resilience.

You are the hope and prayer of your ancestors, and you are worthy of love and worthy of living.

The sun will rise tomorrow, and it will shine through the leaves for another day.

There is beauty waiting, and it’s worth staying for.

You are worthy of being here and experiencing that beauty. Don’t miss it. 

~

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