All that was in the house was percocet. Someone else’s. I realized much later that there was something off about the excuse for those being in the house but, that is a different story for a different day. He was out of the house. Looking back, he was probably out living that 2nd or 3rd life I realized years later he was so adept at keeping. Again, another story.
I was in my early 20’s and not living the life I imagined after graduating college. My parents had moved back to the island the summer after my graduation. Dad wasn’t happy I had held my ground and decided not to go with them. He basically disowned me. That decision changed so much of my life.
I don’t know how many pills I took, don’t remember how many were in the bottle. I didn’t want to necessarily leave this earth, I just wanted the pain to stop. The aching, the voices in my head that told me I was doing it all wrong. That I wasn’t able to move as I wanted to, do what I wanted to. Unbeknownst to me, there was someone attempting to control me and when that clashed with my own free will, I found myself unable to decide. Unable to get myself out of all the messes I thought I’d gotten myself in. But, I didn’t know that then.
And the mess in my head, I couldn’t clean up. I couldn’t silence the voice. The one that told me I was a bad daughter. A bad sister. A bad person. The one that whispered that everyone would be better off if I wasn’t around.
I hadn’t yet really started to live. And though, deep down I didn’t really want to die, I just wanted to sleep. Wanted everything to go away so that someone else could speak up, someone else could fix it and bring a resolution forth. I could not. I was filled with shame. Filled with the disappointment I felt others would experience.
As I laid there waiting, I didn’t really want to go. I didn’t want my mother to experience the death of another child. I was so torn. In so much pain. Lying in my bed. Waiting for someone. The reaper? For him to find me? I don’t know.
I still believe, as with so many other times in my life, that the spirit of my brother kept me here. The next day was a haze. Y’all, I never said a word to him about what I had done though a part of me has always felt he knew but didnt necessarily care because this man was a narcissistic sociopath (yeah, I can pick ’em, right?).
I don’t remember much. I remember feeling so sick. My stomach was NOT happy. I think I threw up. And I just wanted to close my eyes. But I was alive. I felt such shame afterward. Because I hadn’t been found. Because if I started to tell my story, it would be of yet another failure. And I wasn’t ready to admit anything to anyone. I wanted someone to know without me saying the words. It never happened.
I think I’ve alluded to this over the years but, I’ve never said the words. Has it really been 20+ years?
I tried to end my life because I could not cope with everything I was going through and no one had ever given me the lexicon to be able to speak on my emotions in that way. I was also severely depressed because I was isolated and with someone that used my love against me and did the kind of damage that would make for a great movie. There are still blank spots in my memory from that time. I heard it’s caused by the trauma.
So many years ago, but I can still pull up those feelings. Sometimes those feelings come out from around the corner all on their own.
I understand so much more now. About my own brain, about my spiritual center, about the way I am wrapped and protected by my ancestors. And yet, I get it. I am glad that girl that would shut down at the sight of confrontation survived. I wish I could jump in a time machine and see her face to face. I would explain to her that she is sooo special and important. That she should speak as soon as possible and let her mom know what was happening because she would definitely understand.
I would tell her that she is a lot stronger than she ever thought. That she will ride all the waves in the ocean of life and make it out on the other end.
I would tell that girl that she doesn’t need to be ashamed. That she could call someone for help. Get the therapy she needs to make it through. That there might not be a million people in her corner but that a handful works best.
My name is Sili. I want to live. I no longer want to go. I am no longer afraid of what you might think of depression or my mental health. I’m an amazing mom, advocate, sister, lover & friend. And I’m still here. For myself, my family and yes, for you.
If you are, please reach out to someone. The National Suicide Hotline is open 24/7 and can be reached at 1-800-273-8255.
There’s also a way to reach them without calling. You can text HOME to 741741 to chat with someone at the Crisis Text Line.
If you need a list of resources, check out Luvvie’s awesome post.
And remember, you’re not alone.
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