Posted in This Is Real Life

Suicide Prevention Day

Yesterday was World Suicide Prevention Day.

What many of you don’t know is that 6 years ago next month, I lost my little brother to suicide and life has been a struggle since—for my entire family.

What none of you know is that for a few years, I hated him for doing it because he took that option away from me. I had always assumed that at some point I was going to be my family’s monumental tragedy, that of any of us, I was going to be the one they’d lose. I’ve struggled with major depression since I was 4, and it only got harder as I got older. When I lost my brother, it put me in a very hard position because it meant that no matter how hard it got for me, no matter what happened or how desolate I felt, I had to go on. Losing Matthew destroyed us, and I couldn’t do that to my family again. Not again.

So I fought to make my life better. I fought until my present looked better than my past, until I thought I had a future worth working toward. Until I thought I had a life worth living. I have fought so hard to get here, and I continue to fight because my brain chemistry makes me want to fold up and call it a day. My body is imbalanced and it makes everything harder. But still I fight. Why? Because I choose to. Because I have a family that loves me, even when they don’t understand me. Because I have people who need me, and age has allowed me the knowledge that I am not as easily replaced as I used to think I was.

If you are struggling, it’s okay. If today you are losing your battle, that’s okay. Life is hard. It has always been, and will always be hard, but frankly, it’s worth it. The world is a beautiful place, despite being filled with horrible things, and you have a future worth working toward. You are deeply loved even if you can’t see it. You have worth, even if you don’t feel it. It takes time and effort and frustration, but when you get to a better place, it’s worth it. It’s so worth it. To look back on your struggle, even if you are still struggling, and to know that you had the strength and the will to get through all of that and make it to where you are now—it’s empowering. We are all stronger than we give ourselves credit for.

So far your track record for getting through bad days is 100%, and I think that’s pretty awesome.