*****WARNING: THIS POST TALKS ABOUT SUICIDAL IDEATION. IT COULD BE A TRIGGER FOR SOME PEOPLE. PROCEED WITH CAUTION.*****
The horror of suicidal feelinngs doesn’t come on suddenly like a ton of bricks for me. It sort of occurs in varying waves of intensity.
At first, I may barely note the arrival of the waves. They may be spread very far apart in time and consist of very low intensity fleeting thoughts as I’m driving, slicing cheese, taking my evening meds, cleaning, anything where I realize I’m exposed to something harmful honestly.
Gradually, the waves come faster and they come with more urgent feelings about not wanting to Continue on. They become more intense and far more distracting. I start to feel upset each time one of the waves goes by.
If I can’t get things under control by that previous stage, the waves come hard and fast like labor pains and I kind of end up sitting somewhere on my hands crying, too afraid to move because everything feels dangerous.
The above usually coincides with a bipolar mixed state (sometimes referred to as dysphoric mania). My thoughts are flooding my head so quickly that I cannot pull out anything but snippets of streams. It’s like seventeen radio stations blaring on full blast inside of my head and I can’t really focus on even one of them. I blast any kind of external noise trying to cut the internal noise to even half. It’s not audible in the way you hear a car horn or a piece of music, but it’s “loud” and intrusive and consumes all in my head. Everything is black and ugly and twisted. I can’t sleep, I can’t think, I can’t bear one more day of the pain… and yet I continue on.
I continue on because I have seen the aftermath of sudden death. I have seen the toll it takes on people. I continue on because I know how much it costs to bury or cremate someone. I continue on because I love my parents and my family and friends. I continue on because my providers have invested time and energy into seeing a recovery and I don’t want to disappoint people. I am nothing if I am not a people pleaser. I continue on because there seem to be little pinpoints of light in th darkness when I least expect it and I would hate to miss one of those.
If you are in the darkness and you can’t find any light, please keep searching. Hold on for one more day, one more hour, one more minute. Use your phone or computer or your voice and ask someone for help. It can be a crisis line, emergency services, your local hospital, a friend, a family member, a pastor, a coach, a teacher, anyone. Just reach out and tell someone you are in trouble. Keep telling people until you get help. Do not give up. Don’t slide into that darkness.
There is a place for you in the light. If I can find mine, so can you.