**TW: contains mention of suicidal thoughts and behaviour**
About a week ago, I gave myself a fright by writing a suicide note. I believe a large part of what drove me to write something so disturbing was down to recent feelings of detachment and dissociation. To be clear, I am not currently suicidal, nor do I (relatively speaking) pose much a threat to myself. So you can understand my confusion when I realised what I’d written. Having spoken to a couple of people, I realise now that I was simply trying to make sense of things as they stand. If you read my previous post, Climbing Mountains,
I was speaking to a (very wise) friend last night, who reassured me that a suicide note can only really exist in my absence, the truth being so painful for me that I only intend for it to be read when I’m no longer around. In fact, I chose to share the details of some of ‘the letter’ with my Cousin. I didn’t disclose any of the more emotional content, but if we work through the practical stuff, the unpleasant emotions might eventually be redundant, right?
Strangely, since writing the letter I’ve felt a bit more positive. Maybe because I’ve offloaded some subconscious worries, and I have realised (or had it pointed out to me) that there are reasons for me to stick around. I thought, without getting too cheesy, I’d list a few here:
My Cousin has said: “…I think if you keep going the way you are, you could achieve things that you might never have thought possible. I want to help you through this and see you achieve these things, whatever they might be…we’re going to continue working as a team to fight this illness…it’s not going to beat us…”. I’ve never had such unconditional support from a (real-life) friend, and we also happen to be related.
Last Monday, I went to the Chemist to collect my prescription, and the Pharmacist appeared from the back of the shop to let me know that she was moving on, and that she wished me ‘all the best’. She also said she’d continue to hear from the remaining staff how I’m doing. Just to clarify, there was a time when I had to go into the Chemist every day and take my medication in front of the Pharmacist, so we have built up a relationship over the years. She has always been patient (my meds and dosages have changed A LOT!) and never judgemental.
The Practice Nurse at my surgery has been, quite frankly, extraordinarily helpful. I’m now over three weeks clean of any major SH incidents, yet she still happily sees me each week, knowing that having that appointment gives me a focus and reduces the probability of a recurrence.
So people are rooting for me. Somehow, people have deemed me ‘worth it’ and I owe it to them to do my best. Lots of people (professional and otherwise) have invested a lot of time and energy in me, so the least I can do is keep fighting.
There are other people who have less to do with the messy details of my illness, but whom I love anyway.
I am slowly starting to enjoy some things again. I like writing, and would be interested in taking it somewhere other than this blog. I like drawing (idrawtoforget.wordpress.com). I am reading (albeit laboriously). I have the opportunity to resume my studies with the Open University, but as a ‘Disabled Student’ and with measures in place to make it a little easier for me.
That’s enough to be getting on with, right? I mean, I still struggle daily with urges and my thinking can quickly become muddled, and even spiral. But I’m blaming some of that on the feelings of detachment I mentioned at the beginning of this post, and hoping I can discuss it with my Psychiatrist at our next appointment in a couple of weeks time. In the mean time, I plan to just plod on, one day at a time…oh, and keep using the mantras #wecandohardthings and #notfornothing…!