Suicide

Today is World Suicide Prevention Day.  I don’t know how this day and the emphasis provided is supposed to keep people from committing suicide, but it’s an important cause and a good dream.  I know very little about what they do today to help prevent suicides.  Unless it’s to call attention to the fact that way too many people attempt it and far too many of those are successful in their mission.  It’s a taboo, to be sure.  People don’t like to talk about mental health issues any more than they like to talk about abuse issues, particularly incest.  Yucky subject matter.  And if said yucky subject matter happened to us as a child and as a result we are contemplating suicide, we are supposed to keep that and all of the rest of our yuckiness to ourselves.  Yuckiness is not socially acceptable.  Trust me on this one.
 
I tend to break the rules.
 
I have seriously attempted suicide once, just before Christmas of 2006.  I was jobless and out of money, living on credit cards and had no hope and no one to turn to.  My Schnauzer, Maddie, who was 12 years old, had died a couple of months earlier.  I was utterly alone.  It was dark and dreary.  I couldn’t see any way out and had lost all hope.  I swallowed 300 – 20 mg. Adderall pills, having researched and found that about 60 pills was the maximum dose anyone had ever survived previously, per the internet gods.  I figured 300 would be overkill, but I wanted to make sure it would work.  Nine hours later, in a state that wasn’t exactly normal, I started feeling bad that I was going to be the first patient my counselor would lose.  I stupidly called him on his cell phone in the middle of the night to apologize for his soon to be loss.  He, of course, called 911.  I was transported to the hospital by ambulance, a ride I barely remember, and because I didn’t cooperate fully, I was intubated and the most horrible black substance was forced down into my stomach.  All I really remember with clarity is throwing up black goop, repeatedly.  It went everywhere.  All over me. All over the nurses.  All over the floor.  Everywhere. I had no control, nor did I care at the moment.
 
At some point, I was moved to ICU where I spent the next 2 to 3 (?) days. My memory of this time is also patchy.  I think I had some visitors, but I don’t remember things in any sequence and I’m not sure what I said, did, or didn’t do.   When I was finally stable, the powers that be agreed to release me only if I would agree to be admitted to the psychiatric hospital.  This was what I classified as a true low point in my life.  I was angry at having survived.  I was still kind of out of it.  Confused.  Scared.  And now, I was to be a patient in a mental hospital.  Going to the loony bin.
 
I spent a week there.  It was wasted time.  Nothing productive happened.  They basically took everything away, including my cell phone and even my makeup, supposedly so I couldn’t hurt myself.  As if I could somehow kill myself with mascara.  They watched me eat and monitored my position every 15 minutes.  Took my blood pressure.  Gave me necessary medication.  I talked to a counselor of some kind who was trying to determine if I was going to attempt suicide again if they let me out.  My regular counselor worked with them and finally got me released.  I was in therapy twice a week with him for several months to come.  I wasn’t allowed to go home.  One of the requirements of my release was that I live with friends for at least 2 weeks…talk about being a burden…at Christmas.  And another friend brought me my medication twice a day.  I wasn’t allowed to have more than the one dose in my possession at a time.  It was horrid.  I felt like absolute crap.  Crap that wasn’t supposed to be in the picture any more.  Such a failure, I couldn’t even kill myself properly.
 
Amazingly, I got a job the following April.  So I decided to keep trying a little longer, just to see if something good might possibly come my way.  
 
In the meantime, my eating disorder took control of my life.  I went from 256 lbs. to 100 lbs. in about a year.  I was still losing when I started collapsing in the yard, in the bathroom, trying to get out of bed, trying to walk into the grocery store.  I went to the doctor.  He wasn’t available, but his nurse practitioner put 2 and 2 together and came up with ED.  They wanted me to go inpatient, but I had just started a new job the year before, so I resisted and was placed in the outpatient program.  That roller coaster ride continues to this day.
 
Now, I’m unemployed again.  The job was a godsend in that it paid bills, but I was never able to get out of the vast hole of debt I had dug myself into.  And the job was far from fulfilling because I wasn’t allowed to have much of an impact or be a part of things in the way I had hoped.  I was not accepted.  Probably because I’m not acceptable.  I’m a nut case, right?  I continued to try to act like a “normal” person and fulfill the role I was hired to fill, but it was a facade.  When the company sold this January, they reorganized me out the door at the end of June.  
 
Having any job, even an unfulfilling one, was better than where I am now.
 
I’m back in that dark place.  No job.  This time, because of my past unemployment, my eating disorder, several surgeries and a series of bad luck, I’m $30,000 in the hole with no savings.  I’m so close to going over the edge, I feel nothing but sheer terror, the kind that takes my breath away almost all day long.  It makes me sick to my stomach.  It keeps me from sleeping.  Am I contemplating suicide again?  If I knew how to do it to ascertain the desired outcome and if I knew my dogs (I have 2 Miniature Schnauzers now) would be loved and well cared for, well, all bets would be off.  I don’t know if I can get through the next few days, much less months.  Terror paralyzes.  Depression does that too.  But today, on World Suicide Prevention Day, during National Suicide Prevention Week, I don’t know of any way out…of my dilemma or out of the world.  I feel stuck.  I don’t know what I’m going to do.
 
I wonder what they would suggest, those people who man the helplines and who are trying to keep people like me from doing something permanent?  I wonder if they would care?  I wonder if there are any answers for someone as hopeless, broken and empty as me?  Other than to become a statistic.  

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