The first time I planned to kill myself I was 12. I have struggled with Major Depressive Disorder ever since.
At least, that’s my opinion.
When my parents found out, my mom sat me down and demanded to know why I would think about that. Being the wise old age of 12, I of course had no idea why I felt that way, so I made up a story and then she told me the line about suicide being a permanent solution to a temporary problem.
We never spoke about it again.
The next time I remember being depressed was when I was 16. I wasn’t actually diagnosed until I was in college though and that was the first time I was ever told what was “wrong” with me one night when the RA in my dorm hauled me off to the local emergency room. I was allowed to go back to room at school as long as I followed up with the school psychologist. Well, he was a bit more harsh and direct than I could take and I did my required 3 sessions and never looked back.
The last three and a half years were about the longest and the most clear break I’ve ever had from the symptoms. A month ago I could feel it sneaking up. Like when your body starts to alert you to down the vitamin C and take a few cat naps to thwart the cold that’s trying to take hold…. a few weeks later I suddenly realized that those same thoughts of suicide were popping up. That’s when I knew…it’s back. Even though I tried to write it off, this morning confirmed it when I woke up and I felt like I couldn’t get my brain out of the fog long enough to get out of bed. Let alone try to keep up with work, zumba class and two kids.
Even though I’m angry and frustrated and fighting guilt over this… the truth thing is that this doesn’t define me. I used to believe that it did. Especially on nights that I laid on the couch and literally held the side of the cushion with all my might for fear that if I were to let go I wouldn’t be able to keep from taking a bottle of pills. And although the very thought of ever feeling that way again terrifies me, it’s still a bit different this time.
There was this thought in my mind a few days ago that pushed out the darkness. Maybe, just maybe, feeling like this isn’t the worse thing ever. I mean, it makes everything harder – these horrible stress headaches, no energy, cranky, crying spells – I know it’s not pretty, but if the answer is concentrating a little more on my relationship with God, on searching out His truth…. maybe, just maybe, I’ll learn a thing or two… we’ll see how it goes…