On May 21st it was 2 years since I was admitted to the teen ward at my local psych hospital. Let me tell you a little bit about what had happened.
Up to that point I had been depressed/suicidal for about a year. I couldn’t imagine a future past 14. To be honest that was kind of freaky, not knowing when your last straw would be. All that I knew was soon enough I’d kick the bucket. For months and months up to May 21st I had been planning to do something to off myself.
About a month before, my grandmother and namesake, had a stroke. My mother rushed across the country to go care for her. Those 10 days could have been the worst in my life. Every time my mother called, she was on the verge of tears and I felt as if I couldn’t talk to her about my world crashing down around me. While she was gone I would open up to my father about my self harming, how I felt as if I was developing an eating disorder, and how “sad” I felt to put it lightly. I was much more than sad at that point in time, it was as if I was stuck in an endless tunnel with no lights.
The day of May 21st, 2012, the school found out an alumni had passed away. My improv teacher was distraught, and seeing that man like that was horrible. See, ever since I entered that class, he has inspired me. He made me smile and laugh so hard I could barely breathe, even on my darkest days. He has inspired me since to just be myself and people will accept me and will be inspired to be themselves. I want to take a moment in this prompt to thank him for inspiring me so much, and inspiring so many important friends of mine.
After going to the cafe because the recital hall, where my improv class took place, was being used as a place of mourning and reflection, my friend pulled me out. She knew what I was planning on. So she told me we were going down to guidance so she could talk to our councelor about the death of the former student. So she talked with our councelor about his death and how she couldn’t believe it. As she walked out of the office without me, she causally stated that I wanted to kill myself. Then what felt like the fragmented pieces of my world fell apart. I spent the rest of the day in offices of various councelors and doctors with my father. The doctors would determine if I was sick enough to be admitted to a psych ward. By the end of the day, that’s what would happen.
The first 24 hours weren’t the worst, the second 24 hours were. Let me tell you why, for the first 24 hours I didn’t have to talk to anyone about anything. I didn’t want to talk to anyone, but some kids in the ward were kind enough to talk to me that first night. Getting out of bed the second morning was the bravest thing I ever did. I mean I didn’t want to be there, I wanted to be dead. But in the group therapy session that morning, we stated our name, mood, and goal for the day. “Ainslie. Irritated. To be less irritated by the end of the day.”
I met some fantastic kids in the ward. There were 2 boys, both in for detox. It was neither’s first time in the hospital. There was a girl who overdosed on sleeping pills who was the nicest creature on earth and you would never know something was wrong. There was also a girl, one of my roomies, who taught me how to play 5 Card Draw. There was also a girl who always did a British accent to cheer people up. A pair of girls were inseperable even though they had met in that particular hospital stay. I learned some damn important lessons through those kids.
One lesson I learned from them is life keeps going, even if you don’t want to. Life keeps going, even after you want to end it. It doesn’t stop for anybody, but you can grab ahold of it again, even after wanting to end your life. Even after your world crashing all around you. I’m glad I’m still alive, despite not knowing what the future holds for me. Despite being completely terrified of what will happen to me. I have surrounded myself with fantastic people and I hope I can help them the way they help me.