Reflections: Dangling on a Literal Ledge

Updated: Sep 9, 2020

A part of me is telling me not to write about this yet because the wound is still so fresh, but writing is a critical instrument to any little part of healing and has kept me alive every day more so I think than a lot of other things. And, I am so stubborn that I feel that every dark story should come out from within the shadows eventually anyways, so that every person who feels like they are also in the shadows will too step out from the darkness one day when being positive does not feel as natural as it once did before.

And finally, I cannot stop thinking. I have to spew everything out as if it were a happy story, like everyone proudly spews out their happy story. I don't know how else. It is just who I am. I self-judge myself to pieces as I write this - because the truth is, I feel it comes off exhibitionist, but a person should have a right to tell their negative story just the same as a positive story - should they not?

Can me talking about feeling suicidal not be the same as me posting a happy picture of myself? It feels...automatic. The truth is, I let suicidal ideations almost get the best of me again a few days ago. A difficult reality, since I have not experienced those intense feelings since December. I had been almost four months 'clean'.

It was 19 minutes to 10PM on Friday. I knew, because when I looked across the street at St. Lawrence Hall, I maybe imagined the seconds on the clock hands moving; and all I could feel was my head spinning in tune with each exact tick and each exact tock. My head had been swirling intensely all day after days and days of tough words, complex conversations and the building of residual dark thoughts. But, only in the few moments leading up to the exact moment where I left my home and slowly walked upstairs did I feel intense suicidal ideations again, the kind of dark ideations I had not felt since December, or even more intensely so, in over a year when I last entered and left St. Mike’s. Unlike other times where my suicidal ideations did not line up, they did at this moment.

I saw myself fall exactly from the ledge where I stood frozen. I felt the impact of hitting the ground grab hold of me so strongly until I suffocated and it felt like I could breathe no longer. I saw my head split open. I saw myself die. I took one look, two looks, three looks over the ledge, and I saw it all.

There was rain, but it was not pouring. As I sat there, inching back and forth, closer then further, on the literal ledge of my building a few too many stories up, my clothes and shoes became wet, and my hands started to shake from the overwhelming anxiety. I was scared, and then suddenly I was not scared. I looked down and it felt like it could happen at any second..I would let go, inch too much further, and finish it all. Five hundred thoughts filtered through my mind from all different directions, but with no actual direction. That’s what I willfully remember. I remember looking downwards. I remember positioning myself so it would be an even harder fall, as I likely would have hit the fence in the courtyard that separates my building from the commercial building next door. I remember feeling how incredibly quiet the street felt. It amplified all the seconds that passed….the minutes that passed….everything that passed.

I remember the brief second where I almost blacked out because I may have literally busted open my brain, as my demons taunted and whispered all the right words to me, and at the same time, shrouded and covered me. And then I remember screaming out loud, allowing my body to absorb the pain, the tears, the shock, until the literal next second occurred, and then I felt completely numb and dead. Maybe, not completely dead because of what happened next.

And then, I remembered. I remembered I needed to pull myself back, climb back over the balcony fence, go downstairs, and say goodbye to everything and everyone properly, because in one brief moment, without really remembering all the moments surrounding that one exact pivotal moment, I had decided at exactly 9:35PM on Friday to head upstairs without a plan, and without a concrete thought to back that decision. I remembered finally in between the blurriness of my tears and foregone mind, that I left someone behind. I scrambled around, looking for the phone I left behind only to discover panicked messages and calls from him, asking where I was. He went out to chase me, but he chose the other direction. He would later say to me painstaking words about the right and wrong choices of direction had 'everything' become a reality in that near 10-minute time frame. And the truth is, it would have only taken a few seconds to occur once I reached that ledge if the demons, in what I wish in some moments, were just a bit stronger. 10 minutes would never have been enough. Choosing the right direction might not have been enough...[I am literally shaking as I write this right now.]

I should have went to the hospital that night. I know I should have went to the hospital that night. But, I refused; it’s not that I do not want to get help, but in that moment, I could not go back there…to that mental asylum...for them to prescribe yet more tell me to see yet another professional. I wanted to let the demons win. Shame on me. I still do not want to go to the hospital even though it may be time.

And the next day, I felt what I usually feel after I want to commit suicide willfully. I forced myself to 'pretend to feel', because the demons came so close to taking it all away. I went to Easter lunch with his family the day after that, and laughed and spoke about regular things like nothing really happened. I went about the days to follow as if nothing really happened, like I did not try to kill my self. The truth is, I couldn’t actually feel really for the next 24 hours. The truth stretches further - I have felt like a stoic robot for the past few days - pretending that absolutely nothing has actually happened, going through the motions absolutely blind. I blurred out, and whatever has become of me the past few days is an auto-pilot of fear, regret, guilt, sadness, and agony in consistent over-drive.

It’s really hard to actually write all this, so my words today will be short. I didn’t actually want to re-live all this at all, but sometimes you battle and axe down your demons by talking about them out loud as much as possible...screaming about them as much as possible.