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Mental Health

The Life I Got to Live Because I Didn’t Kill Myself

TW: discussion of suicide and suicidal ideations

Less than a year ago, I was the most suicidal I’d ever been. It was no longer a matter of if, but when. If it wasn’t for my support system and a doctor who cared, I’d most likely be six feet under, but I’m not. I’m alive and kicking, and I feel better than I have in a long while. Life is still hard, and some days are worse than others, but suicide no longer feels like the only answer.

I’m happy and I’d like to think my past self would be proud.

Since we’re nearing the one-year anniversary of when I nearly killed myself, I’ve been thinking more and more about everything I would have missed out on. Though we’ve spent the better part of the year in COVID mode, my life has changed and progressed in ways my suicidal self would have never imagined.

Now, I have a diagnosis and a treatment plan. I have medication I take daily that helps keep my emotions stabilized so I never fall back into the dark pit I found myself in. I go to therapy weekly and while I don’t always enjoy it, I recognize it as an important part of my life. Instead of facing my mental illness alone, I’m actively seeking treatment and support, something my past self never fully did.

Now, I have a different major and a better outlook on my university experience. I’m focused on studying what I enjoy, not what I think others expect me to do. I’m learning about what interests me. My past self struggled a lot with being selfish and knowing what she wanted to do. While I may not be a hundred percent certain of where I want to go in life, I’m also a lot more confident that I can and will figure it out.

Now, I have a kitten who is an absolutely chaotic being. She gets along with my dog swimmingly and seeing them curled up together reminds me that there is good in the world. Every morning she meows at me until she gets her attention, even if I’m focusing on my dog. I had never thought I’d be a cat person because, for the longest time, my dog was my everything. He still is, but now there’s a sweet little kitty as well.

In less than a year, my life has changed drastically, and I have changed drastically. When I look back on who I was and what could have been, I can only be grateful. I survived and because I survived, I get to live this life. I still have ups and downs and days where I want to quit fighting. There are days where I think nothing can ever get better. I still suffer. But those days end and new days come, and I experience happiness once again.

I nearly killed myself last year, but because I didn’t, I got the chance to find happiness again.

Her Campus at Wilfrid Laurier University
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