My heart broke into pieces as i picked up an incoming call from the mother of someone dear to my heart.
“Please call Helen. She’s on 24 hours watch at the hospital because she tried to kill herself”, she said.
I was speechless. This was someone i knew and loved with all my heart. She had been with me when i was in the same position 5 years ago. Feeling alone, not good enough, neglected, unloved, like the world would be better without me. I knew exactly where her head was. How much easier it felt to end your own life.
I immediately dropped everything i was doing and called her phone. I had to hold my tears back because i knew i had to be strong for her. She picked up the phone and said, “Hey sis, how are you today?”, Like nothing happened and without a care in the world. I couldn’t help myself and i bursted out crying, “Why Helen? Why didn’t you call me? Out of everyone, you know i understand”. She paused on the phone for 2 minutes then said,
“I have two bags. Sometimes I carry one without the other. Sometimes I carry both even when I don’t want to. I feel completely free when I am not carrying them. Almost weightless. But when I don’t carry them, I feel guilty for not having them. I get scared, what if they’ve left me and have a new owner? They come back and I wish they could just go and not come back. The bags I am talking about are my depression and anxiety. Although I am their owner I have no control over them. They are constantly hanging over my shoulder or neck or my arms. Confusing me. I can’t think or do anything with their weight pulling me down. You know that if people see these bags, it will be seen as a sign of weakness and then you do everything in your power to hide them. When you are around people, you put them in the boot of your care so no one sees them or hide it in your closet if friends visit you at home. You isolate yourself, wanting to be alone with them. You want to be the only one to carry them.
The weight of the bags become the deciding factor to everything you do. They take over your life and your time. You push everyone away because you don’t want them to see that part of you. If someone does, they tell you the bags are ugly then you immediately get defensive and tell them, ‘They are beautiful, you just don’t understand the style’.
All the things you used to enjoy are now pointless. You are distracted. You don’t want anyone to be affected by carrying those bags around everywhere. This is why you hide. You become secluded. The only way to end the misery is to end my life. Permanently being put to sleep became the only solution”
I immediately lost my mind. i started screaming at her, “Don’t ever say that again. what do you mean by that”.
At that very moment, i felt her pain. The feeling of wanting it to all end. No longer seeing life as an option. Death being the only way out.
I asked myself, “Where can she go from here?”