The sound of stumbling

Posted on Updated on

20131215-183403.jpg

Some stories have an effect on us. The following story stayed with me. 

Remember, life is precious

What You Learn When You Attempt Suicide DEC. 6, 2013 By

NATALIA CASTELLS-ESQUIVEL

I learned that dying is hard. You wouldn’t think so, but it really is.

There’s all these options, you know? And you Google them because
you want to learn but Google keeps telling you not to do it. And
even after you do all the research, there’s such a huge chance that
you’ll fail miserably at it. That you’ll survive. And then you’ll
really be screwed. I learned that I really, really don’t like
Mountain Dew. I bought a can of it at the gas station to wash down
two bottles of pills. I’d never tried it before, honestly. I’m not
one to drink sodas—the gas hurts my throat as it goes down, the
bubbles piercing my throat, but I remember thinking, ‘Hey, might as
well try something new while I can.’ I learned that the
Chattahoochee River is a wonderland in the rain. Fat drops of water
burst on the rippled surface like the bubbles in my soda, spitting
out tiny splinters of mud in every direction when they hit the
ground. The water beat against the shore like one giant heart, its
color the perfect combination of burnt umber and ultramarine blue.
I learned that time is not linear, and the race between the rain
drops sliding across the car window is most definitely not a fair
fight. All of a sudden, I’m seven years old again, and it is
Christmas Eve and my parents are in the front of the car, driving
us back home. It’s pouring out. I pick my favorite raindrop—it’s
huge, as swollen as my belly (because, God, I ate so much red
jello), and the biggest raindrop of the bunch. It’s sliding fast,
beating every other pathetic little druplet, and then…not fair. It
split up into tenths of tiny pearls in the wind. It lost. Suddenly,
time warps and I’ve finished swallowing all the pills. I learned
that even trying to kill yourself will leave permanent wounds on
the people who love you. That your parents will know to call the
one person who might know where you are when you phone goes
straight to voicemail and they’re worried out of their minds. I
learned he knew I’d be at the river. As I dove in and out of
consciousness, I saw his blue shoes on the shiny pavement. They
were the ones I helped him pick out during Black Friday. Man, that
line was the longest one of our lives. I saw his hands dial 911. I
saw his face, wet from the rain. I learned there are some things
people will never forgive you for doing. For even trying to do. I
learned what charcoal tastes like, what hospitals smell like, what
a mother’s desperate grip feels like. When I was little, she would
sometimes grab my wrist instead of my hand to cross the street. I
always asked if she was mad when she did this. She never was. It’s
more than a decade later, and her hand is on my wrist. It feels
just as terrifying as it did then. I asked her if she was mad. She
said, “I love you.” I learned to pee with the door open. To have
nurses sitting in my room through sunrises and sunsets, each and
every one of them as kind and wonderful as the next, each and every
one of them as unwilling to let me close the damn door. But I
learned to live with it, to get over it. I learned that I really
love The Lion King and cheese pizza with ranch dressing. I wasn’t
allowed to eat pizza. I wasn’t allowed to eat anything that didn’t
taste like yellowed, wrinkled hospital sheets. But boy, the pizza
on all the TV commercials on the hospital screens looked like
steamy heaven. So I promised myself, as I watched Disney’s
best-movie-ever on repeat, that I would eat all of the pizza when I
got out. All of it. I learned about religion. I walked into my
apartment to find that my mostly atheist parents had set up an
altar for me. There was a picture of me in the middle, fifteen
pounds heavier that my current ghostly self, surrounded by
mismatched candles, angel statuettes, and a wooden sign painted
with the words “Today: Begin”. They prayed to a God I’m not sure
they even believe in. As the door slowly shut behind me, I learned
about love and heavy, heavy stomachfuls of regret. I learned that
living is hard. That my depression would constantly make me feel
like my lungs were filled with dark water and my legs made out of
melting wax. That I was going to have to try harder than most,
every single day of my life. But I also learned that the fight is
worth it. I mean, life is cheese pizza, rain drop races, and
fathers with hearts coated in gold. It is love and faith, and
though there might not be much we can do about how horrible
Mountain Dew is, life is worth sticking around for a second or two.
I learned that living is hard. But I learned that dying is much,
much harder. You should like Thought Catalog on Facebook here.
Tagged Depression, Raindrops, Recovery, Suicide Natalia
Castells-Esquivel Natalia Castells-Esquivel is a native of Mexico,
currently living with four (currently alive) plants in Atlanta. She

20131215-183344.jpg

20131215-183424.jpg

Advertisements

5 thoughts on “The sound of stumbling

    songtothesirens said:
    December 15, 2013 at 20:55

    I made a vow to the Universe about 5.5 years ago that I would never attempt suicide again no matter how bad things got. You see, my last attempt really came close to being my first and only success. I was paralyzed from the neck down, and could not even wiggle a finger or a toe. I was hallucinating, and had become psychotic. Eventually, after what seemed to be days, I was able to wiggle a toe, and finally a foot. I knew then and there that if I made it through this with little consequence physically and mentally, this was it; the last try. I came so close to dying, I am even grateful that I was given a second chance to be depressed.

      mirrorgirl responded:
      December 18, 2013 at 11:39

      I am so glad it was your last and that you survived. Sometimes the result can be that we really appreciate life, even when it means living with tough emotions and situations. How is it going today with the physical symptoms?

        songtothesirens said:
        December 18, 2013 at 16:32

        Doing better….. Advil seems to be helping. And, I think the reduction in the anti-depressant has helped too.

        But, yep, you survive something like my last, near fatal attempt, and you will even appreciate a bad day or week. Its hard though because the old thought patterns emerge, and you have remind yourself what happened the last time, and that you may not be so lucky this time. The point is to remember, and just leave that idea alone.

    suzjones said:
    December 16, 2013 at 19:59

    Such powerful words. The only things that have ever stopped me was the faces of those of I love.

    awax1217 said:
    January 8, 2014 at 12:09

    I have yet to receive your new email. Worried. Are you okay?

Your thoughts matter:

Please log in using one of these methods to post your comment:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s