Once upon a time I was very unstable. I had suicidal thoughts. I don't know how I became that way. The tiniest problem would become the biggest drama, and rather than deal with it, my thoughts would turn to ending everything. It makes me shudder to think back on that time, because the problems were hardly worth a second glance in retrospect, and certainly not worth hurting myself over. The first time I remember being that way I was 14. My mom had dropped a friend and I off at the mall, and the friend's mom was supposed to pick us up. The friend's mom picked us up, but she had a myriad of errands to run and I was two hours late getting home. This was well before the time of cell phones, so I couldn't call my parents to let them know. My dad was so angry, and I got grounded. That was so unfair to me, because I had no control over it, and I reacted by taking half a bottle of aspirin. I ended up vomiting all night, but I was fine the next day. My parents never even knew. That's the only time I remember doing something like that in high school.
The other times were in very young adulthood. It was all relationship drama. Problem with boyfriend? I'd try to cut my wrist. Maybe my heart was never in it, because I'd do it with a disposable razor horizontally pulled across my wrist. It made lots of nasty little cuts, but thankfully never did what I thought I was trying to do. No one ever noticed the cuts, either. The last time I remember an incident like that was well over 10 years ago. I don't know exactly when my reaction to adversity changed, and became healthy rather than destructive, but I can tell you with one hundred percent certainty that I would never ever ponder doing that to myself. I can't explain why I ever did it in the first place. Desperation? Immaturity? Apathy? I have no idea. What I do know is that life is a gift, and I really don't know that person I was who used to do those things. I remember it as though I am watching a movie. I see it happening, but I can't recall the mindset that made me do such things.
I am reminded of this time in my life because someone told me about a young person who took his life recently. People in his life are blaming themselves. My first reaction for the boy is sadness...It didn't have to be that way. My second reaction is anger. Suicide, though a choice made in desperation, is such a selfish choice. The people who are left behind are left with pain, guilt and have to pick up the pieces that the person was trying to avoid picking up for themselves.
There are only two people in the world that know about that time in my life. An ex-boyfriend, who witnessed it firsthand, but who has probably long since forgotten me and that time, and my significant other, with whom I shared that information when talking about another suicide of a young person we had heard of. Basically I shared it as a way as saying I think that parents have to be very aware of their children, citing the aspirin incident. My parents should have somehow known about that. I could have been a story people were shaking their heads about and saying how sad it was, and how young I was. How thankful I am that I didn't become that story.
My signifcant other was shocked when I told him the story. It doesn't sound like me. I am vibrant, I love life, I value life. He could no better recognize this as someone I once was than I can recognize it in myself anymore.
May the amazing grace that saved me from myself all those years ago, and helped me to see life for the treasure that it truly is, help others from making a mistake they can never ever take back.