It’s been 3 years

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Cute picture for the start of a very personal post.

It’s August and as most of my followers know, August is never a good month for me. I’ve debated what to write for a few days now. Do I write the nitty-gritty and personal so people see what it’s like, or do I sugar coat it so people don’t get upset reading it? I’ve decided to do a mix of both. I want to write a quick disclaimer first, I am working closely with my medical team and family so I am safe. I don’t want anyone to read this and worry about my safety. Secondly I will be talking about suicide so this is a trigger warning to some of my friends. And Third, per usual, I am not looking for sympathy, I am hoping to help others reach understanding. So here it goes.

A great example of Bellas work when we have to go to the hospital.

A great example of Bellas work when we have to go to the hospital.

It’s been three years since I decided to go off my medication. Three years since I hoarded pain pills and muscle relaxers and wrote a letter to my family. It’s been 3 years since I planned my suicide. I would like to be able to say that it has been 3 years since I had suicidal thoughts, but that’s not true, I still have them frequently, I always will. Earlier, I posted an article about passive suicidal thoughts and it’s what led me to write this. People always seem to think that if a person gets put on medication and goes to therapy or has a service dog, that magically they are fixed. I wish that was the case, and I know my family does too.

But here is the harsh reality, Depression never leaves you. Anxiety, Panic, Bipolar and Borderline Never leave you. They hang out and ebb and flow like the oceans tide. Sometimes you can see ground and other times you feel like your drowning. All of the treatments can help, they act like a buoy that can help keep your head above water, but sometimes you slip. Sometimes the fighting and the swimming gets so tiring that you just want to stop fighting. There are days that I am so tired of living this way. I have mental illness and chronic pain issues, I never “feel good”. Some days are better than others and some I lay in bed unable to get out of my covers because it’s just safer and less tiring to stay in bed.

When you're always sick, you know to bring books to the hospital

When you’re always sick, you know to bring books to the hospital

Right now I am exhausted, but I continue to fight. Luckily I have people willing to hold me up sometimes. It’s hard to talk to someone when they say they think about suicide, but somehow, I have found amazing friends and family that listen even when it is hard. This week I think I have told 5 people how tired I am, but each and every one is supportive and there, whether it is to listen, give advice, or just hold me tight when all my pieces are falling apart.

I have also come to terms with the fact that life is hard enough as is so being sick makes it harder. I have found role models who don’t let their limitations or illness change them and it has inspired me to help others too. I found out some doctors are stupid and others are brilliant, and that having a good medical team makes life better. Best of all, I found out that no matter how broken I feel, I am still loved and worth keeping around. That it is okay to be sad and sick as long as you love the good days too and man have I had good days.

So happy to call this wonderful man mine.

So happy to call this wonderful man mine.

It’s been three years since I planned my suicide, and in those three years I learned something I didn’t know how to do, I learned how to truly live. Maybe it’s the residual effects of being sick, but I take huge risks now. In the last 3 years, I have lived on my own, I got a service dog, I met two incredibly strong women that I call my therapists. I worked an amazing job and I left that amazing job to move and get a new really fantastic job. I met my now husband, I gave him a chance even when everything in me said run and save this amazing man the trouble of living with me, a broken person. I found out that, that incredible man would show me love in a way I had never known and will never end. I connected with old friends and gained new ones. I found out what it means to be a family and that one of the best parts of getting married is that you get more family. I found out that another set of parents and siblings could love me like their own. I realized that the love of my family is endless. No matter what happens I can count on my parents and my brother and sister-in-law and countless others. I got engaged, bought a house, got married, got another dog and got even had a huge wedding I never thought I would have to a man who holds my heart. Most importantly I have learned how to love myself.

Always watching my back for me.

Always watching my back for me. With her by my side, everything will be okay

It has been three years since I planned my suicide and I plan on adding a number to that every year, because I have never felt more like living then I do now.

 

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13 thoughts on “It’s been 3 years

  1. Your post left tears in my eyes. I know exactly how you are feeling. You could of been writing about me, except for the dog and husband.

  2. It’s your blog. You should write whatever you feel. But I do respect your caution and consideration of others.

    I know what you mean about the ebb and flow of the darkness. I am currently in my second month of respite from my serious depression. (I have dips, and suicidal idea is NEVER far from my mind), but I am grateful for the relief even as I am fearful of the return of the darkness.

    Your story sounds as though it is taking a good turn. I hope it last for, let’s say, one hundred years.

    • Thank you, it turned out more uplifting then I thought it would. I’m in a serious depression right now but writing helps. I hope you find light in your dark times right now too

  3. Incredible post. I’ve been thinking along the same lines-as August is a hard month for me also. I’m so thankful you’ve gained and learned so much in three years. You give me hope for a better tomorrow and a better future. Hugs to you!!!

  4. Val you have a wonderful support system. You know we’re here for you always.Going down that dark road and thinking that there isn’t going to be a light, and then just as you’re thinking it will never get better a Gilmour of a light seeps through and then begins to get brighter just know we are that light for you. You know my story so I do how you feel. it truly never goes away, it’s always under the surface lurking ready to lift its ugly head,but you find that strength to rise above one day at a time. I love you, and you are to precious to lose.
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  5. I loved your article! June is a hard month for me and I’m not sure why. I struggle with suicidal thoughts as well. But with my dogs who are rescues not service dogs and therapy it helps me keep going even in the worst of times. I applause your courage to write about it and share your story. Here’s to us and staying in the light and out of the darkness!!!!

    Deena

  6. I felt compelled to reach out to you after reading some of your entries, because I have been where you are in many ways. I’ve struggled with anxiety, depression, and chronic headaches since adolescence. I also had severe growing pains, musculoskeletal knee and ankle syndromes. I was, as we called it back in the day, “double-jointed”. As the years passed my diagnoses increased. I began having Irritable bowel syndrome, heart arrythmias, and a lot of muscle tension and pain. My muscles were always hard knots, and always sore. Especially my neck and base of my skull. Along with all of that came exhaustion. Throughout my adult life I questioned what the heck was wrong with me. I felt like a hypochondriac with all of these problems and doctors. All the while I dragged myself through life, went to school, became a doctor, got married, and had two lovely children. About 10 years ago, at age 40, I was diagnosed with fibromyalgia, but something told me that wasn’t really it. Finally when I was 48 it all came together. Who knew that all of these, seemingly unrelated problems, were all caused by one genetic condition called Ehlers-Danlos syndrome. The revelation was life altering for me. I finally had an answer. I wasn’t “crazy”, lazy, or imagining any of this. The paradigm shift was so relieving and validating. I wish I had known sooner, I wouldn’t have been so hard on myself for so many years. Thankfully I know now, as both my children have inherited the condition from me. They will know why they feel like they do and I will teach them the fine balance between self care and pushing yourself through despite the difficulty.
    You may read that EDS is a rare condition, but that is not so. Our healthcare system is so fragmented that one doesn’t waste the precious 5 minutes with the GI Doctor talking about your headaches. Thus, no one sees the whole picture and puts it all together. A recent study showed that 34% of patients diagnosed with fibromyalgia have other symptoms of EDS. Not so rare after all.
    I’ve come to a place now where I feel compelled to spread the word about EDS to help solve this puzzle for others. I hope just one person reading this will recognize themselves and it will help them put it all together. EDS can present differently in different people, and not everyone exhibits the same complications.
    If any of this resonates with you please click on the link to the National Institute of Health’s page below. It describes EDS and its diagnostic criteria. If you meet the criteria, your quest has begun. There is a lot to learn, and while it’s not all good , at least you’ve found an explanation.
    https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/books/NBK1279/

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