Tuesday, September 6, 2016

Suicide Prevention Awareness Week

Good day, darlings!

I wanted to pop into this sorely neglected bloggy of mine to talk a bit about a cause that's become important to me over the past half-decade. Someday I promise I'm going to get back into writing here as it's excellent therapy blowing word chunks all over the Interwebs. (How's that delightful mental image for you?) Maybe if I cut out the unnecessary things like putting on real pants I'll have more time to devote to this.

I like this plan. #pantsarestupidandihatethem

Business ownership in one meme.
Anyway ... I am not the same person I was five years ago. No one is, of course ... I hope - isn't the point of this life thing to grow? It's been particularly whirlwind-y for me, though. Five years ago, I was five months into parenting and just beginning to suffer some of the more serious side effects of a severe hormone imbalance.
Fast forward 1,827 days, three more kids, two moves, and yeah, you could say I'm a little bit different. I'm squishier, wrinkly-er, and so much more exhausted than I ever could have imagined. I'm a newly-minted part owner of a business that's been around since 1885 (!!! ... more on this later ... probably ... once the terror subsides a bit and I can think something besides SHITSHITSHITWHATAMIDOINGSHITSHITSHIT) ... so yeah, definitely don't want to fuck THAT up.
I'm also technically an "adult" (in a few months I'll no longer be able to select that "18-25" age bubble when doing surveys *GASP*). And I'm still terrible at life-ing but slowly getting more okay with the fact that I am TERRIBLE AT LIFE-ING.

The most profound thing I've experienced, besides becoming a parent, is going through four rounds of postpartum depression and premenstrual dysphoric disorder (which I guess is technically part of parenting. So yeah, PARENTING. HOLY CARP.) The hormone clusterfuck that accompanied pregnancy and post-pregnancy after each of my four kiddos was severe enough I ended up suicidal.

Thankfully, and ONLY by the grace of God, an amazing husband and family, and the hair of my chinny-chin-chin, I made it through.

I BARELY made it through.

Now that I'm back in my right-ish mind, it's terrifying to look back and see how close I was to the edge. What's worse is looking back and seeing how well I faked it. Nobody knew. Nobody knew that every time I took a bath all I could think about was drowning myself (which I gotta say kinda ruins the point of the whole relaxing aspect of THAT endeavor) or that every time I picked up a kitchen knife the urge to slit my wrists would be so strong I'd have to sit down and put my head between my knees or that I was terrified to go anywhere because I was wanted so very badly to just drive my car over the conveniently located cliff on the road to our house.


I would be going about my day doing regular human stuff and suddenly feel like I didn't deserve to be here anymore. The juxtaposition between how completely normal and fine life was and the horrible hurricane in my head was ridiculous.

But. I made it through. I survived. Why? Because I said something.

I told my husband.
And I told my mom.

And it scared the fucking bejeezus out of them and I owe them like 5 to 7 years of life and 1,480 gray hairs apiece. But I told them.

And that is the ONLY reason I'm here today to write this at my pear juice-encrusted kitchen table while Kellan (who is two and a half and HE KNOWS IT) smashes peanuts into the floor and I listen to my 80-something neighbor mow his ginormous lawn and pray like the dickens he doesn't keel over.

It's the reason I'm smelling the breeze blowing through the window with just a touch of fall in it and getting excited to see the leaves change upriver.

It's the reason I can still eat too much cake and drink too much wine and be horrible to my husband and have awful terrrrrrrrrible text message fights (SO not recommended) only to eventually remember that we love each other and that marriage is HARD, but that I still get to be here to work at it.

I said something.

And I know I talk about this a LOT and it's not exactly a warm fuzzy thing, but I'm going to keep saying something in the hopes that maybe I can help someone else.

So, in honor of National Suicide Prevention Week September 5-11, I ask that if any of what I just said resonates with you, tell somebody how you're feeling. If you don't have a person you can trust, call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-TALK (8255).

And if not, if you're one of the lucky few in a good place mentally, I ask that you check in with your loved ones. Ask them how they're doing, how they're REALLY doing. No judgment, no shame, just the truth.

As the saying goes, it will set you free. It will be scary as SHIT for everyone involved, but it will.

You can also change your social media profile pictures to a Suicide Awareness Ribbon this week. It's a small, and some would say stupid, gesture, but it's something.

Lastly, please, please, please remember that YOU MATTER. You are important and precious and special and beautiful and unique and no matter what that overwhelming darkness whispers to you, the solace it promises is a lie. There is NO ONE who can live your life better than you. Don't give up. Keep breathing. You can DO this.

All the good vibes, my friends. <3

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