World Suicide Prevention Day: What It Means To Me

Today, September 10th, is World Suicide Prevention Day. Of all causes out there in the world, this is one of the very closest to my heart, as someone who has both battled with severe depression, and lost a family member to suicide.

It is also particularly prominent to me as it is 5 years ago this week, on the 13th, since my life was turned upside down, and my depression entirely took over my life. To say these 5 years have been a roller coaster would be a complete understatement.

I have been lower than I ever knew to be humanly possible. I have lived inside the darkness, where for months on end I simply could not see a possible future past that day, that week, and certainly not that year. I have had times where I have been unable to get out of bed, let alone leave the house. Over this time I have punished myself by starving myself for days on end, purging every single thing I ate, and slicing hundreds, possibly thousands, of cuts into my body. I have weighed less than a child, seen my bones, and still hated myself for being ‘fat.’ I have carved into my wrist drunkenly with a kitchen knife, and taken two overdoses which hospitalised me, each time feeling even more broken for failing.

While I have been on the slow and treacherous road to recovery over the last couple of years, never once did I actually think I’d be where I have arrived in the last few months. For the first time in my entire life, I can look in a mirror and not despise what I see. In fact, there are times I actually think I look nice. Yes, there are lumps and bumps there that I don’t like, but for the first time, I’m still gonna eat that damn pizza, or that whole tub of ice cream, if I damn well feel like it. Or whatever the hell I want. And maybe I’ll go for a run tomorrow to compensate, but maybe I won’t. But I’m not gonna torture myself either way.

For the first time, I do not feel guilty for simply being me. I no longer have an overwhelming sense that I am a horrible, pathetic person, who is worthless, and nothing but a burden to those around me.

In fact, I know myself to be a loving, loyal and caring person. I will go above and beyond for my friends and family. I am someone who is, or at least can be, fun to be around. Hell, at times I think I’m damn right hilarious! I also finally know that I deserve to be loved and cared for too. I have skills and talents. I am able to set myself goals for my future, like writing my book, like getting married and having a family, because I can finally see myself actually having a future, one where I am happy and loved and deserve to be so.

I am also no longer ashamed to talk about where I was, because I am proud of how far I have come. I see the scars on my body and they are a reminder that I was stronger than what tried to destroy me. They are my battle scars and they remind me that I won the battle.

I am not what happened to me. I am not what you made me and I am not what you did. I am what I choose to be. And I choose to be happy, and fearless, and beautiful, and loved; just the way I am.

And right now? Sure, I’m not where I thought I’d be when I mapped out my life as a kid, or at school. Hell, I’m freshly single at 24, with barely a clue what the hell I wanna do in life. But I feel strong, and fearless, and empowered and amazing. There are so many things I want to do and see and read and taste in this crazy, beautiful world we live in, and I am excited to get out there and do it all. For the first time I can hand on heart say: I love my life. I have an incredible family and network of friends, as well as this unbelievable online community, all of whom mean the world to me, and I can count on for support. I am lucky enough to live on this absolutely amazing little island, surrounded by beaches and beauty. I don’t know where I’m going yet, or exactly what I’m doing, and that is so totally okay. Because it’s going to be an amazing journey getting there, and I plan to have one hell of a ride!

To any one who is still going through that darkness:

When you are not able to see a way out, I promise you it is still there. Believe me, I know, I know – it’s almost impossible to believe someone who says it – I used to think the same. ‘That’s great for you, but it’s just not gonna happen for me,’ was what I thought when I read stories of recovery and coming out the other side. But I promise you, it is 100% within your grasp. It is going to be difficult, and long and there are times you will slip but that is totally okay. You’ll get there. And even when you are there, you may still have bad days, but again: that is totally okay. You’re human. We are fragile, and we are allowed to feel down, and weak and sad at times. Even without reason. More than anything, I urge you to talk to someone. A friend, a family member, a therapist or a helpline. Sometimes it’s easier talking to a total stranger.
Here’s the number for the Samaritans: 08457 909090, or alternatively please feel free to email me here, and I promise I will always be there to talk or listen.

Just don’t go through this on your own. You are not alone, not ever, no matter how much it feels that way.

And no matter how much you can’t see it, the following things never cease to be true:

  • You are beautiful.
  • You matter.
  • You are unique.
  • No one else can play your part.
  • You are loved.
  • You would be missed.
  • Life goes on.

I’ll see you tomorrow xxx

Tomorrow15-ProfileImageRIP Dusty, you are forever missed xxxxx

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26 thoughts on “World Suicide Prevention Day: What It Means To Me

  1. Dammit Paris you made me cry!!!! What a completely and utterly beautiful and honest post. I so admire you for sharing all of that and I have no doubt that there’s someone reading it and feeling that tiny little bit better knowing they’re not alone.

    As you know, I’ve suffered from and still do suffer from anxiety and I know anxiety and depression are very different things and I can’t begin to image the types of feelings you’ve had, I can relate and I know how it feels to be in a constant battle with yourself. I’ve had days where I can’t leave the house, days where every tiny little thing makes me feel like my heart is going to burst out my chest and days where I genuinely don’t feel I can cope with anything but I’ve learnt not to let those feelings override the beautiful days.

    Posts like these are SO important, thank you for sharing and next time you’re in London, we are DEFINITELY meeting up and heck let’s have a massive sleepover 🙌🏻💖 xxxx

    Liked by 2 people

    • Aha I’m sorry for making you cry!!
      Thank you so much. I have dealt with bouts of anxiety, but obviously nothing like you have, but I completely know what you mean. You are so right – it’s about not letting those bad times override the good ones. stay strong, beautiful.
      Yes, we must! I’m over in a few weeks for Holly Martin’s party, we must have a chat on Facebook and sort something out.
      Much love, darling xxxxxx

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Big hugs to you Paris for sharing your story. You are a beautiful person inside & out and incredibly brave to share your experiences.

    Touch wood I don’t seem to suffer from the black moods that have hampered my brother since his teens but I do know only too well the effect his numerous disappearances (and suicide attempts) have had for him and our family. Touch wood he is now 2 years down the line from last bad bout and is in a really happy place with a fantastic new life and girlfriend.

    You CAN be whoever and whatever you want to be, I have no doubt that you will achieve your goals big and small.

    Take care and see you on the 2nd when I can give you a hug in person.

    Sharon x

    Liked by 1 person

    • Aw thank you Sharon. Sorry to hear about your brother, but so pleased he too seems to be in a much better place now.
      Thank you for your constant support and friendship. I can’t wait to see you in a few weeks! Xxx

      Like

  3. Such a beautiful post! And when I see your photos I see someone really pretty. I think it’s the most awful feeling in the world to be that depressed and admire you for finding a way out. A big hug from me and I think it’s amazing you’ve written this honest post. xxx

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Hi Paris, I’ve just read your post and had to tell you how moved I was. I have never been through depression myself but my husband went through it about 3 yrs ago, and unfortunately has had a bit of a relapse recently. I can’t say I understand how you’re feeling but I can sympathize with your family and friends. My husband told me that he needs our support, and it’s very difficult to know what to do. I think we just have to be patient and give him time. He said me and my four children (16 and upwards) were a big help in his recovery. I’m sorry I’m sure you don’t need me rambling on like this but once I started writing I found it hard to stop. I just felt you would understand a bit of what he’s going through. Thanks so much if you’ve took time to read this message.You sound like such a strong young woman(probably stronger than you think you are) and I would really appreciate any thoughts you have . xx

    Like

    • Hi Leigh.
      Thank you for reaching out, I’m so sorry to hear about your husband. It is so difficult for friends and family of those affected too, but it sounds like you’re being so supportive. You are totally right – patience is absolutely key. Unfortunately, there is no magic formula or ‘how to’ guide. Each case is different, but it’s really about patience and being there for him how and when he needs it. Whether that means being there to listen, or talk, or inspire and encourage, or also giving him space when needed. Just make sure he knows he’s loved and supported, which I’m sure you do – I’m sure having you and your children in itself must be a big motivation for him. You obviously have a very strong relationship, and I think it’s wonderful you’re being so supportive of him. My ex walked out on me three years a go because he couldn’t deal with the depression, so I know it is not easy! Much love, if you ever want to talk, you know where I am xxxx

      Like

      • Hi Paris, thanks so much for your kind words. You don’t know what it means to hear such words of support. You’re right we just have to show him lots of love and support and be patient. I’m so sorry your ex couldn’t handle it. Its his loss. I’ve only just met you and I can see what a strong and wise woman you seem to be. Thank you so much again for your kindness. I wish you all the best with your journey to recovery.
        Hopefully we’ll stay in touch
        Leigh xx

        Like

  5. Hey Paris.
    New reader here, it’s brave and reassuring to see you talk about all the struggles. I have lost people in my life to suicide and am still overwhelmed at what they might have went through in silence.
    It’s about keeping your chin up and never loosing hope even if it’s just a minor ray of sunshine, gotta hold on to it.

    Keep smiling, we are worth it 😘

    Like

  6. Hey Paris.
    New reader here, it’s brave and reassuring to see you talk about all the struggles. I come from a culture where talking about it openly makes people shun you and push you into silence suffering.
    I have lost people in my life to suicide and am still overwhelmed at what they might have went through in silence.
    It’s about keeping your chin up and never loosing hope even if it’s just a minor ray of sunshine, gotta hold on to it.

    Keep smiling, we are worth it 😘

    Liked by 1 person

    • Hi lovely.
      It both saddens and angers me that in a world so very advanced in so many ways, we are still so backwards when it comes to mental health, and that there is still so much stigma surrounding it.
      I’m sorry to hear you have been through the loss of suicide, it is a heartbreaking and unfathomable experience. you clearly have a wonderful attitude though, and I wish you every happiness.
      We are absolutely worth it, you’re so right ❤️ xxx

      Liked by 1 person

  7. Pingback: World Suicide Prevention Day: What It Means To Me | Tabytha's Universe

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