Archive for ‘Chapter 4 Crash and burn, either get up or die!’

March 5, 2011

No one should be so hurt

that they are broken.  But it happens.  People break other people.  People hurt other people.  Parents hurt their children.  Siblings hurt each other.  Friends hurt each other.  Strangers hurt each other.

Most say they want revenge or justice for the hurt they have suffered.  But I believe what people really want is to hear I am sorry, I love you and I hate that I hurt you!

So what can you do if that is just never going to happen?  You tell them.  You tell them, even if they are not there to hear you, you hurt me, I want you to love me and I want you to be sorry that you hurt me.

Then you say: even though you hurt me, even though I am broken now, I am stronger than you ever thought I could be, you will no longer keep my power, and despite you I am going to be OK.  Better than OK!

Then you work your ass off to do just that!

It is time to heal….

It is the end of 2003… and it is time to heal!  To be better than OK!  No more surviving, no more almost dying… it is time to live!

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March 2, 2011

“The Shovel” (To you)

I have recently acquired some new readers and for some of you this is to you!

For those consumed with thoughts of suicide, I will never know exactly how you feel and I will never pretend that I do, but I have felt hopeless and I have obviously been suicidal.

This is how my hopeless felt:

I have a shovel, and I start to dig a hole.  At first it is a hole to hide in. To hide shame and fear. But once I climb in dirt seems to be dumping in.  At first it just covers my feet, I can still move my feet and legs so I stay in that hole where I feel safe.  Then the dirt moves up to my knees and I tell myself I am OK, I can still dig out if I need to.  But then the dirt comes up to my chest and soon I am buried and there is no way for me to get out of the hole  without help.  At this point I have a choice, I can either stay and be buried alive and die or I can reach out to someone (like a therapist) or to something (like medication) to help me climb back out of the hole.

The bad part is the hole is still there.  Oh sure I might start to fill it up but I never fill it all the way to the top because I never know when I might need to start digging and climb back in.

Today that hole is not only completely filled but no longer visible.  There are beautiful flowers planted where the hole in my life was.  There is sunshine most days, not all – but most!  And when the temptation comes to start digging I just plant more flowers instead!

We all have a shovel.  Learning that you have one is the first step.  Then learning how to use it is next.  The shovel represents tools we all have to create a beautiful life or to tear it apart.

March 1, 2011

Part 4 Not my story

Since I was in a coma for several days and only remember the last couple of days I was in the hospital I will tell Mike’s story instead.

I asked Mike the other night to help me write this and here is what he said: “I got home around 12:30 and the house was surrounded by police and an ambulance was in the driveway.  Rhonda was there. (Rhonda was a friend of mine from work and had not been able to reach me so she left work to come and check on me.  She broke a window to get in the back door. She is who called an ambulance.)  At first I thought you were dead.  But the ambulance guy said you were stable but critical, whatever that meant.  I followed the ambulance to the hospital but they would not let me stay with you.  When I tried to find out what was going on no one wanted to give me any information.  Finally they told me you were in a coma and in ICU.  When I arrived at the ICU there were cops standing by your bed and they would not let me be with you alone.  They thought I had done that to you.  Your face was bruised and cut and your right side was bruised bad!  There were burns on your hands.  After they talked to Rhonda and figured out what happened the police left.  For two days you laid in bed staring at the ceiling.  Finally on the third day you could answer simple questions like your name and the year.  By the fourth day they moved you to a private room.  You were still out of it and I asked if you were going to get any better.  The doctor said you would but he was not sure how much better.  After a couple of days they tried to get you out of bed.  You could not walk so they brought in a neurologist and a physical therapist.  Apparently when you fell you did some kind of nerve damage to your right leg.  As you did better you no longer wanted to see me.  I was crushed but stopped coming around much.  And you know the rest!”

February 28, 2011

Part 3 I had a plan

I had a plan.

I took a cocktail of meds that would numb the pain.  Not the pain of life but the pain of death.  I waited for awhile to make sure they were working.

I had a plan.

I took Maddie (my dog) outside and I  fell.  I did not feel it.  That was good.  It took me a moment to get back to my feet.  I left her outside so she would be safe.

I had a plan.

I went to the bathroom and found the blades.  I began to cut in the bend of my arm.  Deep.  I laid on my bed and the smoke made me cough.

I had a plan.

February 15, 2011

Part 2 Hopeless

I believe it is human nature to want immediate results.  I wanted to be normal, healed or even if not healed – just to be OK!  But you cannot heal a lifetime of hurt in a year.  I realize that now.  But at the time the thought of one more day just made me feel hopeless.

Remember normal?  A person’s normal is not necessarily a good thing, especially when your normal is insanity.  But what happens when the insanity starts to change, to become sane?  Nothing feels normal.  And until you become comfortable with sanity your life feels strange.  The hard part is recognizing sanity when you have never seen it.

Mike and I were fighting constantly.  Mike had become more dysfunctional by the day.   And Jake had started having behavior problems.  I felt like a failure. The two most important people in my life seemed to be fighting me.  Almost like they did not want me to get better.   Or at least that is how I felt.

The truth was they both were reacting.  Reacting to the changes in their lives.  Reacting to the changes in my life.

It seemed just as I started making progress, getting off of my meds and leaving the house, all hell was breaking loose inside my home.  The one place I had felt completely safe.

I was so sad.  I had such high hopes.  I really thought if I worked hard to get better everything would be OK.  We all would be OK.  We were all in individual therapy.  We were all doing the right thing to get on track.

But the train derailed!

So I sent Jake to school one day and asked Mike when he would be home from work.  He said about 2.  That was good, he would be home before Jake.

 

 

 

 

February 14, 2011

Part 1 God

I had started working myself off of my meds.  But I had not made much progress in leaving home!  Sinead encouraged me to leave the house on “safe” trips.  I would go to the grocery store at first, but only if Mike drove and of course went with me.  Later, and as a part of my recovery, I started going to church.  I figured it would be safe and Mike (who drove) and Jake went with me so it was a family affair.  I went to several different churches close to home.

I read the bible and studied.  I tried to understand.  To feel God.  I even started praying.

From church to church I went…

But I never felt God.  The best way I can explain it is it would be as if someone who was blind was being told what they should be seeing.  As if they weren’t blind.  I have now come to realize that I was not born with a faith gene.  It is not that I do not want to believe in God (I have desperately tried), but there is nothing there.

After months and  much effort I felt like a failure.  Like something was so wrong with me – that God hated me.  So many people had faith, where I had none.

One night (it was on a Friday and Jake was at his Dad’s) Mike left (we were having arguments constantly), only days before I attempted suicide, and out of complete desperation and in a manic rage I got into my car and drove!  I drove all the way to Shepherd, TX.  Why you ask?  That is where Phil and Sherry lived, the Pentecostal preacher and his wife I had known since I was a child.  I went to their church and found them.  They took me out to dinner and that night I asked them to pray for me.  Pray so hard that I would be saved.  They prayed over me for hours!  The next morning I drove back home with no sleep.

Nothing!

Nothing!

Nothing!

What was wrong with me?

If you believe in God, I bet you are asking the same thing! You are not the first and will certainly not be the last!

Nothing!  I know that now!  But then, I thought everything was!  And I was surely doomed to hell.

 

February 9, 2011

Stuck

I have been having issues with continuing my blog.  I purposely left out a very important event in my life because it is so incredibly painful to retell.

Right before Mike and I separated I attempted suicide.

I am working on retelling the story but I am choosing to be patient with myself.

I think it is important for me to share my full survival story.  Sadly, many do not survive suicide attempts.  It is not that I believe I know what they felt, because I don’t.   But maybe my story will help loved ones to begin to understand what despair a person who either attempts or commits suicide is dealing with.

I will add that, in my experience and opinion, there are two types of deaths from a suicide.  Accidental and purposeful.  Some people attempt suicide to gain attention or to get help and die accidentally. Others just want to die because it hurts to much to live and has hurt for a very long time!

!

January 26, 2011

Every Choice You Make

Me in 2003affects the people around you.  I chose to overwhelm myself.  I chose to place others needs in front of my own.  I chose to lock myself away from those that I blamed for my dissent into a chaotic world.  For part of 2001 and 2002 I made choices that not only affected my mental health, but the mental health of everyone around me. To prove the gravity of my self-destruction, one of the many effects for me was a weight loss of almost 75 lbs.  The effect it had on others is unmeasurable!  Some say that people inherently know right from wrong, I agree with that statement, however, I have witnessed what one person’s insanity can do to another.   How it can change a person.  And although they realize their actions are not “right”, the line of right and wrong becomes fuzzy, skewed.  My line had been that way since childhood, Mike’s line became that way in adulthood.

For every action there is a reaction.  It is the domino effect.

Mike reacted.  He reacted by first trying to fix it!  It could be anything and everything.  And when he found he could not fix anything he turned on himself.  He started to self destruct.

Mike is one of the kindest, most gentle humans you will ever meet.

But he became explosive.  And our home took his wrath.  Windows, walls, etc….  but never me!  His self-destruction did not stop there, but out of respect for my darling husband I shall stop there!

Mike became afraid of who he had become.  And we decided to separate.  About a month later…. I filed for divorce!

And I emerged from my self-induced seclusion.

January 13, 2011

Just leave me alone!

Although I went back to work, I was not there long!

I filed a complaint with the company I worked for against my boss…

All hell broke loss!  It became unbearable… I took a leave of absence.

I went home, crawled into bed and stayed there for almost a year.  I did not drive, I did not go to the grocery store, I literally did not leave the house by myself!  The only trips I took outside of the house Mike drove me.  And the only places I went to were to Sinead’s office and my psychiatrist.

I locked myself away from the world.  As much as I wanted to be ok… I had just had it! Had it with humans and no longer cared if I saw another one… EVER! I shrank down my world to only a few people.  I just wanted to be left alone!

This placed an enormous strain on an already fragile marriage and a fragile Mike.  Both were suffering greatly! And soon both would fall apart!

January 12, 2011

911 what is your emergency?

“I can’t wake up my wife!”

“Sir, is she breathing?”

“I am not sure!”

“An ambulance is on the way.”

This is only a part of the conversation my husband, Mike, had with the 911 operator the week after the 4th of July in 2002.  I am sure if I pressed him he could tell me more but there is really no point.

At approximately 1 pm an ambulance arrived at our home to take me to the hospital.  I remember very little about the events of the next several days.  When I finally woke up a social worker came in to ask me questions.  Then a psychiatrist, several doctors and nurses followed. 

They all asked me similar questions, “Are you anorexic?” “Do you take illegal drugs?”  “Are you bulimic?” “Did you harm yourself?”  “What did you take?”  “Do you want to die?”

The answer to every questions was an emphatic NO!

Finally, a doctor came in to talk to me.  He told me I had been brought to the hospital by ambulance two days prior.  I was in ICU for 24 hrs and then moved to a room.  I was suffering from severe dehydration and was begining to show signs of malnutrition.  He told me if I had arrived at the hospital just a couple of hours later I would probably be dead.  He went on to tell me that my husband said I had not been sleeping, so when he left for work that morning and I was still asleep he decided not to wake me up.  But hours later, when he could not reach me by phone, he returned home to check on me.  Mike could not wake me up, so he called 911.  The doctor went on to tell me that my tox screen had came back negative, however, he would like to have me comitted for anorexcia.  I actually laughed.  Then I started to cry because I knew he was serious. 

When Mike returned to my room I was in tears.  I was scared to death.  I had no idea what in the hell was going on.  I had not realized I was not eating.  I had not realized how little I was sleeping.  And I did not want to go back to a crazy hospital. 

My darling husband advocated for me.  He convinced the doctor not to have me commited.  He promised I would get the help I needed.  The next day I was released in the care of my husband and already had an appointment with my psychiatrist. 

More meds, weekly psych visits, an eating program to get me back on solid foods, and a week off of work. 

Then the search for a therapist started… 

Mike came up with a list of about 8 therapist in our area.  And one by one they were eliminated after one visit. 

The interview: “I want to have a real life, I want to be ok, can you help me do that?”  They all said, “Yes, I can help you do that.”  Then I ask, “I want to eventually be ok without being on medication, can you help me do that?”  They all said no… all that is, but one!  And she said “Yes!” 

And so it began… my journey home.  As with any journey there were moments when I was not sure if I could keep moving forward, there were major setbacks, and major triumphs! 

I owe my life to Sinead.  Not the breathing, bleeding life I have.  But the happy, I love my life – life that I have!  She would tell you I don’t owe her anything because I was the one who did the work.  But she was my guide, my parent, and my muse…

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