Addendum: Victories

Victories is a poem based on a journal entry from last year, mixed with thoughts and emotions from journal entries this year, about the worst of my depression. I sought help and am here today to share my story because of that. In posting these poems that might seem urgent or dark, as if I’m in crisis, I’m really just trying to share my story because so often the stories of the mentally ill are left in darkness. I want to be vulnerable, because for so long I believed any indication of vulnerability would break me.

I believe some people in my life will be shocked to learn that I’ve struggled with suicide ideation quite frequently since I was sixteen. I would like to assure everyone that I have never self-harmed and don’t believe I will. However, I don’t believe self-harming is something to be ashamed of, even though it is a violence against yourself and your body. I’m not condemning those that do, those who have, or those who will.

I have tried to kill myself and I failed. I was eighteen. I have not tried since. I will not go into the details and I will probably never share that story on an open platform.

I still have days where the saying, “The best thing I can say about myself is I didn’t kill myself” is true. I will continue to have those days unless my brain is magically given a “normal” potion – whatever that would mean. I don’t say this to alarm anyone. I say this to be truthful, to be open. To be vulnerable and to maybe, just maybe, show someone else struggling with a similar situation that their feelings and thoughts aren’t shameful or something to hide.

I say this because this is my life, for better or worse. And while the dark periods can be so, so dark, the light periods are always coming. The darkness never lasts in perpetuity.