Not many of you know that I tried to commit suicide two weeks ago but I didn’t. In the instant I tried to breathe in water, I was reminded of everything I loved, of every person I loved. It was their voices, faces, the memory of their hugs and words encouragement against my depression that really pulled my head above water. They have always been the ones that have kept me going no matter how low on fuel I am.
“You are my best friend.”
“You are amazing. You are incredible. You are worth a bazillion everything.”
“I’ve heard of you and I don’t know who Norman Reedus is so in my imaginary world you’re way more famous than he is.”
“It’ll be okay.”
“You are intelligent and talented and beautiful. In short, you are amazing. Never forget that.”
These people believe I am amazing but the truth is, they are more amazing than I will every be. They have been my wings when I needed them the most. They have never feared my depression, self-hatred, or my lack of belief in their words. However, from this point onward I will believe, like you do, that I am worth bazillion everything, I am amazing, I am intelligent, and that it will be okay and that I am loved.
Later, I decided I would share my story last November with My friend, Dese’Rae L. Stage. During this interview for Live Through This, I was having trouble remembering things I wanted to say and she said, “You’ll remember it when we’re done.” She was right, I remembered more what of what I wished I had said. I remembered what I was afraid to say because it might be triggering for some. I remembered the feelings I had the night I tried to kill myself.
I have always thought that depression felt like ice wrapping itself around my shoulders and knife in my chest. Except the knife would never reach my heart nor would the ice fully cover me even though I wanted them to.
I didn’t want to be alive. I didn’t want to have other people’s thoughts and wishes in my head anymore. I didn’t want to think of the hundreds of ways that I failed. I didn’t want to let people know just how badly my rape had hurt me. I had felt that way for a while but that night was the final straw.
Everything ached and I was having trouble breathing. I was convincing myself out of hurting myself, like I had promised my family. I promised I wouldn’t cut. What I decided to do was far worse: I began to fill my bathtub with only one motive. I was going to drown myself in the one place I often sought comfort. What was ironic was that as I watch the bathtub fill, I tried talking myself out of doing it but I was failing because of memories. Memories of bad test scores, disappointment from my parents and teachers, my embarrassment, and being raped by someone I thought loved me thus making me unworthy of love of that kind. All of them at once like a very ugly movie. It was enough. I was done. I pulled myself above the water and here I am.
I wish I had remembered to say that.