Sunday, 14 October 2018

THREE REASONS WHY WE SHOULD ALL KEEP GOING | TW: DISCUSSION OF SUICIDE

We are search lights, we can see in the dark
We are rockets, pointed up at the stars
We are billions of beautiful heats
- P!NK - What About Us

For obvious (I think) reasons, there have been times in my relapse where I’ve felt reluctant to go on with life and have become determined to end it. And yes, sometimes; I’ve tried to. More recently (like literally the last four days) I’ve begun to see some changes in my mental health from the medication getting back in my system and one of these has been finding – and then clinging onto – all the reasons why I shouldn’t die. All the reasons I deserve life. Deserve my recovery.

And now that I’ve learnt these three important reasons, I thought it was time to share them with all my lovely readers in the hope that it inspires others to find their own reasons. Their own rationale to fight back against all of those feelings of depression and all of those suicidal thoughts…
I want you all to know though, that these three reasons aren’t my only reasons – just the main ones and I thought that if I condensed them into these three then perhaps people who feel that they may only be able to find  one or two reasons to be alive, don’t feel hopeless and pressured in thinking that they should have lots of reasons or feeling like their few reasons are inadequate. There’s no rule here. In my opinion, if you find anything that will motivate you, then it counts. It counts for something. For everything.

1.     YOUR PEOPLE

First thing I want to say about this is that I wouldn’t be able to count on all of my fingers the amount of times that I’ve had people say to me “you need to be alive for you, not for the sake of someone else." Sometimes, though, you feel like you aren’t enough of a reason. Feeling suicidal is usually a lot about feeling worthless so thinking like that doesn’t always work. I decided to use ‘your people’ to make it easier to include my family, my pets, my friends, the professionals who support me… everyone who matters in my life. And unlike lots of lists where people talk about how important their friends are compared to their family; I wanted to talk about why these people are a reason to stay alive. Family are mostly viewed as vital to a person’s mental health – whether that be through a positive or negative impact – and the fact that my immediate family is down to four members doesn’t diminish their significance in my life. In thinking about my family, my motivation is about ‘how could I do that to them?’ ’How could I leave them in that way?’ I think that this also applies to my friends. With my pets, it’s more about responsibility. I mean it’s not a case of ‘they wouldn’t be here without me.’ More that being without me would completely change them and the possibility of that being a negative change/impact makes me feel like it wouldn’t be fair on them. Almost as though I have that dreaded (in mental health) phrase: ‘a duty of care.’ Then there’s the professionals I have around me; they’re a motivation because I have so much respect for everyone (even when I sometimes don’t show it or in fact, make it look the opposite) that I’d hate the thought of any of them blaming themselves or thinking that there was something they should have or could have done. 

2.     YOUR POTENTIAL

This is obviously one of the trickiest things to recognize. Especially on your dark days and in your black moments - probably why I came up with this list and this particular point on a ‘good’ day. I currently have a huge, important project in the works that has the potential to change services for Service Users who are a trauma survivors and that, has been a huge influence on my recovery during this relapse. I’m not going to lie; there was an occasion after my idea for the project was successful, that I had it drilled into me by the auditory hallucinations that I didn’t deserve the success but now? In this moment? I can see that I
do. I worked my ass off to have my idea turned into a project so why shouldn’t I reap the rewards? The voices tell me that I don’t deserve it; that I deserved what happened to me what was done to me. And after spending years trying to fight this and convince them that I hadn’t, the way I’ve learnt to deal with it is to say ‘what if I did deserve it? Right. Well, it’s happened; now why do I deserve the rest?’ And they (the voices) have no rebuttal. I realise this is an individual thing and that not everyone who experiences auditory hallucinations will hear them say these things and the ways I cope with the voices I hear may not work for another person who hears voices but I thought it was worth putting it out there. In case it helps just one person. Another aid in learning that I have potential has been attending my first meeting as a Richmond Fellowship Working Together Committee Member. It was great to be in a room surrounded by people who confirmed my potential and encouraged me to exercise my… talents? Strengths? Capabilities?

3.     THE LITTLE THINGS

Like, the feeling I get when my bunny and cat are both eating at the same time. Or when I take my makeup off after spending a day with a full face of it. When I get a cold Diet Pepsi out of the fridge. Or receive a message from one of my best friend’s after being off the radar for weeks. Hugs from my Mum. Finishing a book (currently Everything Everything by Nicola Yoon). The reassurance of normality after watching Pretty Little Liars. Taking my pillow and duvet to the settee. When my hair backcombs just the way I want it to – and stays there all day! Professionals acknowledging they’ve made a mistake. Making it onto another disc in Grey’s Anatomy (I’ve only ever gotten up to season eight/nine!). Snapchats of friends’ cats. Finishing a blog post. The pride I get now from taking my medication. Having a healthy bank balance. When an ASOS delivery arrives. Getting rid of a headache. 
All those little things that give you even the smallest of smiles.