Back from the brink

TW: This post discusses depression and suicidal intent.

It’s been almost two months since my last post, so much for my daily blogging plans 😀 !

I laugh, but in truth I have been very ill.

There is a lot that I’d like to say and I hope to do this in a series of bite-sized posts, rather than in one overwhelmingly massive missive! These posts may appear daily, weekly, alone or in clusters. Who knows? I’m taking life one day at a time, and doing what I can each day. All I can say for sure is that I will be blogging, now that I’m able to function again.

I am happy that my capacity to function is restored to me and to be making progress, slowly but surely.

It was a strange feeling as I started to come out of the depths of the depression, to be able to feel something other than that I had to die.

I have a lot of knowledge about mental health and mental illness and I’m very self aware, but I became so ill that I lost all perspective. I am naturally relentlessly positive and have boundless enthusiasm. I’ve previously described myself as ‘a bit Tigger. Depression takes that from me. At its worst, it strips me of all capacity to function and to see anything other than suicide as a realistic option for me.

Glad though I was to emerge from those terrible depths, as the days progressed and my mood began to improve, I became aware just how bad things had been and I had to start to process the knowledge that I’d been dangerously ill. I hadn’t been able to wash, dress myself or clean my teeth. I either barely ate or ate poorly. I struggled to engage with anyone or anything. I couldn’t engage with my crisis plan or crisis support, for to do so seemed utterly futile. I experienced feelings of self loathing that I had thought were long behind me. I could see only that I had to die.

Indeed I did plan to die. I am immensely grateful that one friend became worried enough to contact my GP … on the day I planned to make a suicide attempt, although she wasn’t aware of that. It took persistence on the part of my doctor, repeated telephone calls and voice mail, before I could find the capacity to answer the phone to her that day, but all that gave me pause. Our eventual conversation was difficult but helpful and led to her visiting me at home the next day, as I was unable to get to the surgery. A new path unfurled before me. Things were going to change.





6 thoughts on “Back from the brink

  1. Your courage shines from you and inspires others and I am sure inspires you too each time you come through a cycle – and yes recognise that feeling of ‘I thought I was through this’ and how frightening and disheartening that can be. I have never been at the point of active intent/ planning, but can relate to the levels of despair and loathing and loss of perspective and self care you describe. Your writing – and I relate to this too – is full of hope even when writing about the most hopeless feeling spaces. Each time of coming through such an experience our compassion grows deeper I believe. We also build resources all the time – those within us and around us – like the resource of your dear friend who reached out at the right moment – and I for one am so glad they did. With love, Em


  2. Some sad news, and some positives, to start the new year for you. I am sorry to hear that things got so low, but happy to hear that you came out the other side. There is a big community out here that is on your side, and keen to help. Just ask. We may not always have all the answers, but somewhere in there, there might well be enough positives to get you through the bad times.
    My very best wishes for 2016, and many years to follow this one, Pete. x


    • Thanks so much for your comment, Pete. I always appreciate your thoughts. I’m in something of a state of flux at the moment, but the tide it seems has turned to flow in a positive direction. I do feel like people are really in my corner; this is a new but most welcome feeling. I’ll continue to blog as, among other things, it helps me to process my experiences. A very happy New Year to you and Julie x


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