Today, September 10, 2016 is World Suicide Prevention Day. According to the organization Take 5 To Save Lives,
More people in the world die from suicide than by war and murder combined.
That is a chilling fact to behold.
When I was diagnosed with epilepsy just over seven years ago, an unsettling sea of emotions whirled about within me. As if I were experiencing the five stages of grief. Denial, anger, bargaining, depression and eventually acceptance.
However, even though I had accepted the fact that I had this neurological condition, it didn’t fully eliminate all of the feelings as years went by. I’m human. I’m not super human. Though I wish that I were. I experienced battles with anger, depression, frustration, seclusion, and yes even thoughts of ending my life. My inner-voice saying, “I don’t want to burden my family, my husband with my condition.”
The side effects of my epilepsy medications didn’t help in these areas, as many epilepsy medication side effects will tell you that there are risks of changes in mood and behavior, suicidal thoughts, and depression.
Many believe that others’ lives, their own lives, would be better off without them being alive. That the problem will be immediately solved. This is the greatest grandest lie to become tangled into. As if trapped in a spiders web.
Ending your life doesn’t solve the problem that you face. Ending your life doesn’t take away the pain. Ending your life would only pass it along to each and every person who loves and cares about you.
I’d fallen into that great grand lie with a heavy heart and most likely with the help of medication side effects.
My heart feeling like a boulder within me, I reached out to my husband and my mother, after no longer wanting to carry such a heavy weight another moment, letting them know the thoughts that had been clinging onto me like Velcro. With much reassurance and prayer, I was reminded, of my worth. All of the wonderful blessings I have to live for and the blessings yet to come. How struggle can refine strength. All of this empowered me and stripped the power from any thoughts of ending my life.
What are 5 signs that might mean someone is in emotional distress and needs help?
- Personality change
- Poor Self-Care
If you recognize that yourself or someone in your life is experiencing emotional distress, you can break away the tangled web. How do you go about doing this?
- Reach out
- Instill hope
- Offer help
Showing genuine compassion and care, an active desire to help those who are experiencing emotional pain can make a world of difference.
Being open and honest about suicidal ideation or attempts is crucial because it begins the process of healing, building a dialogue of positivity and shattering thoughts and attempts which are harmful and not beneficial. It presents an opportunity to prevent pain and distress for yourself and others who may be thinking and feeling the same way too!
Like a breath of fresh air, what a freeing feeling it was to have the weight of all the negativity that I carried lifted from me. I could stand with confidence, loving life, having broken away from the tangled web I’d once been wrapped within. Looking upon the challenge that I face, my chronic condition epilepsy and knowing that I can and that I will overcome. In fact, I will live my life to the fullest.
You can too! Whatever challenge it is that you’re facing, you can, you will overcome. Know that in fact, you will live your life to the fullest. Refined stronger.
Always remember, God is the author of your story. He holds the pen. Whatever trials or tribulations come your way, it is not the end of your story.
If you or someone you know is in need of support, help is available 24/7!