Hi. I am suicidal. Now before you go getting on your hobby high horse declaring me a monster, heretic, and an uncaring b*t*h let us talk about how I feel.
Not a day goes by that I don’t consider suicide. It’s not because I want to hurt every living creature that ever met me, but it’s because… I. AM. IN. PAIN. Every single day I endure the pain of not being good enough, not having everything I’d hoped for, not being a good enough mother or wife or friend, not performing well at work… Taking every error in my life - responsible or not - and engulfing it into my soul to create this everlasting loop of pain.
Does this seem too heavy for you? Welcome to the club.
Unfortunately, disjointed mental images are the only thing I have to describe what goes on in my head during an episode of Major Depression, Severe and Recurrent. At least I have a “name” to put on my affliction. I just refer to it as “The Nanobots.”
The Nanobots didn’t win yesterday; or the day before, or the day before that. When the Nanobots rise to take control, I truly felt as if I am under attack; under attack from an unseen and not fully understood foe. I felt as though my body and mind were not my own and any attempt at control would only result in additional fortification by the enemy. For hours – at times days, I endured mental and physical anguish indescribable in human tongue with respites too short to gain purchase. I cannot even begin to detail the darkness my soul inhabited over the two years. The terrible journey into darkness so dank only those trapped in a hell eternal can fully grasp. Nothing familiar. Nothing safe. No salvation. Only the dark recesses of my mind to ponder and engross my thoughts.
My first memory of depression is when I was about 18 years old. If I try to equate the experience, I may be able to pull out a few earlier memories; none of which is similar to what I experience as an adult. My illness comes in “episodes” and on August 18, 2013, my latest episode will have been going on for two years. Two years of working with my psychiatrist to find medications that would ease my mental anguish.
Enduring through an episode is much like any other person experiencing a debilitating illness. I have good days. I have bad days. I can’t tell you when either will happen. I can just hope for a good day. A day when I can take care of the house, cook, clean, play with the dog, garden, and enjoy my life. A day when I can participate in the things I like to do, a day when I can be a spouse, a day when I can be a friend, and a day when I can go to bed and sleep well.
Recently, as is usual with people who suffer from Major Depression, I developed Anxiety Disorder. I have panic attacks in situations where I feel trapped. This new development is akin to the Post Traumatic Stress Disorder garnered from years of child abuse at the hand of my mother. She’s the one that beat into me that I wasn’t good enough, didn’t do what I was “supposed” to do, and just generally didn’t please HER.
I’ve always had slight social anxiety, but recently the panic attacks are acute. The first occurrence was a month and a half ago and I had to remain trapped in rolling panic attacks because I could not leave the situation. The second was about four weeks ago when I was starting an intensive outpatient program for my “issues.” I was so thankful my husband was there to gather me into his arms and ward off those who would “harm” me. That attack resulted in an emergency appointment with a psych counselor and a psychiatrist for medication to help the panic attacks.
Now my struggle is not to become agoraphobic – which I’m finding to be a slight problem. Agoraphobia would solve everything… I wouldn’t need to be around other people and nothing bad would happen to me. However, I do like going out with my husband on our little “adventures.” I even like going out on my own. It’s a happy time for me. I guess agoraphobia isn’t an option for me.
I try to find the pattern to my episodes – what was the trigger? In the recent episode, the beginning of the pattern is what everyone takes for granted – confidence in one’s self. Confidence that I am able to be as good as I think myself to be. Just when I’m gaining headway, something happens that brings all the demons back up and down into the depths I go. Yes, I see the psychiatrist’s view of this problem. I see the connection. Now it’s just a matter of how to solve that piece of the problem. Stress seems to be an issue too. Again, this is directly linked to the abuse I suffered as a child. Stress to get the housework/laundry/cooking done before SHE came home so I wouldn’t get beat.
As I get to this point of my story, that’s all I have. I’m trying to get better. I’m trying to get through this episode. I’m trying. It’s complicated. Most of the time, none of this makes sense. None of this is wanted. I just have to keep trying to get through this for me, for my children, for my husband, for my friends, and for my life as I want it to be.