Light at the end of the Tunnel

I was curled on the bathroom floor, holding my knees up to my chest as I cried so much that my vision was blurred. I couldn’t even see. I was trying to stop the hole that seemed to grow in my heart from getting any bigger; it felt like a force that was stretching outwards. The pain was unbearable. Eventually, I found the strength to stand up and face myself in the mirror. The person looking back at me was a mess, my nose was red, my eyes were so swollen that I looked like a frog, my skin looked discolored, my hair disheveled. I decided to take a shower thinking it would make me feel better. So I turned on the water and made it so hot that my skin was as red as my nose, but the pain of my skin burning felt good, it made me not think of the pain that my heart was feeling.

I sat in the bathtub, letting the burning water continue to fall on me, and I wanted nothing more than to disappear and die. I felt worthless, a piece of shit as he would call me, “I was used goods and nobody wanted me” were his exact words. I had given him so much of myself; I had given him my heart, my soul, my life. I had loved him for so long, more than I loved myself. I had accepted abuse from him every single day of our relationship; I had let him control everything from whom my friends were to how I dressed. I had separated myself from my family because of him and still it was not good enough for him, I was not good enough for him. What was I doing wrong?

That night was the lowest moment of my life, I was convinced that I had been fighting depression for a long time, but it was solidified that night. I had taken my razor to shave the stubble on my leg, and had accidentally cut myself, I enjoyed watching the blood drip down my leg and go down the drain. I told myself that I wanted to see how much blood I could lose and how long it would take for all of it to leave my body.

When I was 16 years old, I used to cut myself with blades every time I got upset, I did not know how to handle my emotions. But suicide was never the end goal. I liked how it felt when the blade would cut my skin. The pain I felt when I would shower and the water would sting would be satisfying and better than dealing with my emotions. My parents never knew I did this, I always did it in places that were too private for anyone to see. Therefore, I never got the help that I needed. I did this on and off until I had my princess. She saved me. How could I hurt myself when I had to care for another human being? Whenever I felt the urges to do it, I would distract myself by playing with her, her smile and giggles would make any worries feel so small.

However, that night, I couldn’t fight the urges. For the first time in over 10 years, I slit my wrists; I cut my arms, my legs, my stomach, my thighs, and my breasts. I wanted to die. Lucky for me that the cuts I made were not deep enough for a substantial amount of blood loss to kill me. After the fact, I felt so ashamed. How stupid was I to be trying to take my life when I still have a daughter that needs me? What would her life be without me? Where would she live? Who would teach her what to do when she gets her period? Who would do her hair for prom? Who would dry her tears and buy her ice cream as she goes through her first heartbreak? I dried myself, went into the room where she laid asleep and cuddled her. She will never know how much more I have needed her than she has needed me.  She has been sent to save me from the darkness of my own mind.

Why do I share this very intimate story that possibly no one has ever known about? I share it because mental health is a real thing, because a lot of people are silently going through their own depressions and feelings of unworthiness. I share it because this happened 5 years ago, and everyday since then I had to fight with myself to choose to want to live. I had to choose to laugh over crying. I had to choose to want to better myself over letting myself wallow in self-pity. I had to choose to be strong and not let my weaknesses consume me. I had help because I had a beam of light in my life that I woke up to everyday. But when you practice something everyday, it becomes part of your life. You wake up one day and you feel happy, the sun looks different, the colors are more vivid, and the flowers smell better. You eventually start to love yourself, you look in the mirror and the reflection of a broken self is replaced with the reflection of royalty. You start to feel unstoppable and when you are faced with others that belittle you, frustrate you, or bring you sadness, you are strong enough to walk away from it. You have grown and you no longer cater to negative energy, you choose to surround yourself with higher vibrations that align with you.

The road to recovery is not easy. It will be hard at first. But if you surround yourself and accept the love from the people that love you, it will help. Every morning I used to force myself to say 5 things that I loved about myself, and say 5 things that I was grateful for. At first, I struggled with being able to say even 1 thing that I loved about myself. I hated everything. Now I have to force myself to ONLY say 5 things I love about myself, because the list is too long and it would take too much of my time. Building your self-esteem and self-love is like exercise. When you first start, you can’t even do one push up, and after 3 weeks, you can do 10 in a row without a problem! Be gentle to yourself if you are feeling this way, confide in someone you trust, see a therapist (it’s okay no one has to know), take it one day at a time, and practice self-love.

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