Still Alive


I have been having a particularly horrible week. So much has gone wrong in the last seven days that I am tempted to just call this the worst week I’ve had, in memory. Family members are ill, I’ve got no money, and a friend who I thought would always have my back were actually just waiting for the right opportunity for the knife.

As someone with quite severe depression, this has all led to me having some pretty horrible thoughts about self harm and suicide. As you can probably guess, I haven’t killed myself and I think the largest factors towards my not having committed or attempted suicide boil down to a couple of things.

First and foremost, Chris. Even with my incredibly low self-esteem, I know beyond any doubt that if I killed myself, Chris would be devastated. He loves me and cares for me more than I ever thought anyone would. I stop and think about it sometimes and I’m blown away. I really can’t understand it but Chris is not the kind of guy who would ever or could ever fake these kinds of emotions. He’s not particularly open, emotionally, and I think that his love for me is the only extreme or intense emotion I’ve ever seen him display. How could I inflict something like me committing suicide on him? A fine way to repay all of his kindness and generosity.

How To Save A Life – The Frey – this video can speak to anyone who has lost someone and subsequently wished they could have done something to prevent it.

Leading neatly on from that is the fact that I could never do it to any of my friends or family, either. No parent should have to outlive their child, and no friend should ever be made to feel that they couldn’t intervene, that their friendship wasn’t enough to help convince a person to stay alive. It would be left to someone I love and care about to clear out my bedroom, too, and I can’t think of anything worse for someone who is grieving to have to do, especially with a bedroom as personal as mine. Every thing on every shelf is some outward display of a memory or an emotion or an aspect of my personality. I attach huge amounts of sentimentality to objects that have no real worth, and there will be someone out there who will understand something about each item. I still have a small heart made of tinfoil that Karl made me in the lower sixth. No worth to anyone but him and me, and while it might seem easy for someone to throw it away, what if you knew that it held some kind of memory, some little part of the person who used to own it, even if you don’t know what the memory is? I wouldn’t find it easy.

Thirdly, as much as there are things I hate about myself and my life, there are so many things that aren’t shit. I love music. I love reading. I love video games. I love spending whole evenings with people who I love, watching TV shows and talking. I love my friends, my family and my boyfriend more than anything. I love my cats and my dog. I love nature and all the amazing, breathtaking things she is capable of. I love ingenuity and capabilities of mankind (even if I don’t always approve of the uses they’re put to). I love the way it feels when Chris looks me in the eyes and tells me that he loves me, and the way his hands feel when he holds me.

What I think the most important factor is more of the how than the why. I’ve already expressed concern for whoever gets stuck with the horrible job of emptying my bedroom, but what about the person who would find the body? I can’t imagine much that would be more awful than finding someone like that. If I were to do it in my house, the most likely candidate for finding the body would be someone I care about whichever of my housemates was to find it. Worst case scenario would involve Chris finding me – he’s had to deal with that once in his life already, and if there is anyone who doesn’t deserve something horrible to happen to them, it’s Chris. He is kind, generous, shy, polite and would never do anyone any harm without severe provocation.

I could never do it in a way that impacts another person, either. I just think it so selfish, the people who commit suicide by throwing themselves under trains. I wonder if they’ve ever given a thought to just how really, seriously traumatic that would be for the train driver? I used to fantasize about jumping off the train bridge in Lancaster as a non-stop train sped through, but I just can’t bring myself to subject anyone to that, let alone a random stranger just trying to do their job. On top of that, imagine the chaos – it takes so little to disrupt train service, there would be many people inconvenienced just because of me.

Lastly, no matter how bad it feels when I am usurped by the oppressive certainty that everything is shit, I’m not worth anything to anyone, and nothing will ever be ok again, when I am lucid and rational and only mildly convinced of the world’s hostility to me, I hope.

I hope that one day I will be healthy and whole and happy again, that one day Chris and I will have a place of our own that I can fill with clutter and colourful rugs with blankets and throws over all the chairs and a welcoming front door. I can hope that in the future I’ll start each day with a smile and be the person I’ve promised myself I can be.

I hope that Sam will realise that in the classic “reason/season/lifetime” paradigm, he is supposed to be a lifetime friend. WE are supposed to be lifetime friends. I hope he’ll realise just how horrible this whole situation is, just how much we both lose from this. I hope he’ll realise that no-one will ever care about him like I do. Without him I have almost no doubt I wouldn’t have managed to make it through the last two years in Lancaster. I hope he’ll realise that the trust and loyalty he can get from a best friend is greater than that which he can expect from a girl to whom he is the other guy, the guy she’s cheating on her boyfriend with, the guy she kissed out of mild curiosity and swore blind she didn’t have any interest other than friendship.

I hope that someday I will actually be able to do what I want. I want people to like me. I want to do things that make their lives better and happier and richer, somehow. I want to be the woman who Chris deserves. I want to be the friend that my friends deserve.

I hope that one day, I can be my own person with no shadowy black dog lurking around every corner in my mind. I hope I’ll be free.

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6 thoughts on “Still Alive

  1. I so relate. This week has drowned me. I lost my best friend, my boyfriend is someone entirely different suddenly, I have no money, and no family to turn to. I always try to keep very still, and hope it would seem like strength from outside. But I am not doing well at all. Your post really helped.

  2. This post has made me equial parts sad/happy. Happy that you’re still here and still hoping. Sad that you have to go through so much pain. *huggles*

    Also I find your ideas on suicide interesting. They are summed up quite nicely in this song – Dans le sac vs Scroobius Pip – Magicians Assistant. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WVcuZBDu48I

    I really hope you find the happiness and joy and awesomeness you deserve.

    xx

  3. Hope things are going a little better now Alice. Again, those are feelings which are quite familiar to me, especially the thought on the bridge… many was a drunken night that I stopped on that bridge, just to think about things as I stumbled home. I was mostly considering going for the high voltage, rather than the impact, but in any case, it’s not good. There have always been things to stop me, of course, but these have changed over time. The first was a promise not to… odd, but very effective, given how hard I try not to break them. The next was basically flipping the way I was thinking… rather than trying to find something to live for, realising that it may be more effective to find something worth dying for. Until that time, it would be pointless (not that I don’t believe it’s pointless anyway these days 🙂 ). In any case, as long as you’re alive, there are always so many ways you can positively impact the world. I guess maybe that lead on partly to who I am now, I will always go out of my way to help a friend. Maybe that’s who I was all along, but too clouded to see it? The other thing was, a few years back, my brother’s best friend committed suicide. He’d often talked about it, and often disappeared… but this was the one and only time my brother didn’t go out to look for him, the only time he figured that he was just doing it for the attention, so he stayed in that night. The knowledge that he hadn’t done everything he could for his friend… it ate away at him. For the while, he was an alcoholic, and actually suicidal himself, claiming to hear Brian’s voice telling him to come away with him. At one point, he went to the same lake as Brian to drown himself, as Brian had, and was tackled by the police, biting one in the process. He got in all kinds of shit for that, but over a long, long time, he’s gotten back to normal. Brian’s gf, who had several kids (one of which was Brian’s), never got back to normal… she chose the lake eventually too, abandoning her kids in the process. I think it was around then that I really started to understand at a visceral level, rather than just intellectual, how that kind of event can have a deeper impact on those around you than you would ever imagine, and often IN that kind of state, COULD even conceive. Consequently, since then, it’s never been something I’ve really allowed myself to consider in any serious way.

    Without realising it, we each set up a complex web of interconnections between ourselves and those around us, links which we may not even expect to be strong enough to hold a part of our troubles we can suddenly realise can take our whole weight, and in the end, the loss of a single node can change the shape of the whole structure, and generally not for the better. I guess all we can try to do is make sure as many of our interactions as possible are positive ones, right? 🙂

    (I feel like I’ve come a little off topic… seems to happen a lot :-/ )

    • I have no idea what to say other than ‘thank you’ for this. Who’d have ever thought that the comments that make me feel this blog is more than just a spout of self obsession would be from an annonymous person?

      “I guess all we can try to do is make sure as many of our interactions as possible are positive ones, right?”
      This is going to be incorperated into my life. I think it’s something I’ve always strived towards but have never had the words for. Now I know why – you had them!

      As for being off topic, I don’t think you were. In any case it was a natural progression from A to B.

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