My Living Attempt

This was posted by my friend Caitlin on October 22, 2013 on her site What Was Left Behind.

This is testimony of her attempt to take her own life. I wasn’t startled by the fact that she considered herself an atheist and I wasn’t shocked by the roller coaster of mood swings that she wrote about. Honestly, I could, at one time, relate.

I wasn’t surprised at the handful of the drugs she consumed or the wine she washed them all down with and I wasn’t shocked, reading about the hours she spent throwing up all the toxins she so willingly fed her body.

I could relate to all of it. I could also relate to the grip that Satan and the world had on her life.

But what you will find in this story is so more than an atheist. It’s more than mood swings, drugs, suicide and vomit. What you will find is a desperate girl, a non-believer, on her knees, with a thread of hope in her hands and remnant of a prayer under her breath. What you will find is a girl, that God kissed life into, even though she’d never ever considered him before.

My Living Attempt

I wrote this post a while ago but it didn’t feel right to post it until now.

In early October I tried to kill myself. Now before we all jump to assumptions I am not writing this post for sympathy or for any reasons like that, I think this is a place that a lot of my followers have been in and do not feel the need for sympathy because of my actions. Obviously, seeing as I am writing this, it didn’t quite work. The reason I am writing this post, however, is to share my thoughts on the experience and hopefully prevent something similar happening to someone else, or at the very least, sharing some of the lessons I have learned so they do not have to learn them themselves.

The first thing to know about me before reading this post is that I am very moody. I don’t come across this way, but I am up and down and all over the place, always. One second everything is great and I am insanely happy and the next thing I am suicidal and want to die. Sometimes there is an in between, and yes, if you are thinking this sounds a lot like bipolar, well you are right. I haven’t been diagnosed because of my age but all the same it isn’t looking good.

So I was experiencing one of those mood swings. Up and down. But this time it was up and really down. So down that I was dissociating heavily, and wasn’t thinking clearly. And I don’t mean that in the ‘I did something impulsive’ way, I mean I was having an out-of-body experience and couldn’t control my own actions. It was late at night. I don’t remember much. But what I do remember that I wanted to be unconscious. Forever. So I foolishly (and this really proves I wasn’t thinking) finished off about 3/4 of an opened bottle oof wine and took 20 panadol tablets, along with some temezapam and Valium so I would fall straight asleep. I also remember listening to this recording on Youtube of Sylvia Plath reading Lady Lazarus, I remember bitterly spitting these words out with her as she read

“Dying, like anything, is an art. I do it exceptionally well. I do it so it feels like hell. I do it so it feels real.”

I also remember thinking about whether I would wake up in the morning or not. If I did, there would just be another day. If I didn’t, there would be nothing. Nothing is something I didn’t know, nothing was mysterious; nothing was scary and comforting and necessary all at the same time.

See this is where I was particularly stupid. Although fasting and the consumption of alcohol makes the damage done to the liver by the one of the metabolites N-acetyl-p-benzoquinoneimine (yes I do my research) much more severe, that affect is counteracted when you begin to throw up. So day 2 of my suicide mission was spent throwing up bile. Not recommended. 0 out of 10. But then the strangest thing happened. I started to panic. Not enough to do the responsible thing and go to the hospital, but desperate enough… to pray. I don’t mean to cause offence by saying that it is desperation that led me to prayer, but I have never took much interest in the practice of religion, and would even go so far as to say that I am an atheist, so it was incredibly surprising to find myself on my knees in the middle of the night issuing what I at least hoped resembled a pray to a lord that I had never taken much notice of, let alone believed in. After that prayer I feel like I could never dismiss religion like I did before, like I have a small but significant tie with it. I wouldn’t go so far to say that I have had a spiritual awakening or anything of the sort, but something changed something I can’t quite describe.

It was my desperation, at that point, to live, that made me realize about my mood swings. I mean, really realize. You know how things can just kind of be there and you acknowledge them without really processing or evaluating them? I did that with my mood because I have never had great cause to realize that there was something abnormal about it. But going from where I was that night, to where I was a mere 24 hours later, well there is something quite wrong with that. I was so grateful at the very concept of life and all that it brought, and was disappointed at the future that I had jeopardized

This experience made me look twice at what I was throwing away, for sure, but I actually haven’t yet stopped looking at the reason this even happened in the first place. I panicked about it. I am panicking about it. I know that when I am myself, properly, one hundred percent present, I would never kill myself, so who is this person that took over me? Do I have multiple personalities? Do I have bipolar? How can I explain these dramatic mood swings that have happened since I was old enough to remember? But essentially it is irrelevant. For now at least. There is little I can do to change the state of my mind right now. I have to learn how to not do that again. I have to remember how desperately I wanted to live.

I spent three days where I had no idea whether I was going to live or die. As horrible as the whole thing is, I wouldn’t change it. I learned so much. I paid attention to my every thought about life and my living it. And yes the good thoughts were outweighed by the bad. But there are good ones. That is something I managed to completely overlook. I hope I never do something like that again. And the fact that I hope that is extremely hopeful. And so now, I embark on another type of attempt. My attempt at life. I shall leave you with one of my favorite words of wisdom about suicide- I tried to kill myself last night. Never doing that again. I almost died.