A Bandage Won’t Work For That

Please note, this has content that may not be suitable for everyone. It involves self harm.

There they are again. The sirens someone called out for. Wailing into the night diffused by nothing but the sky. They’re intertwined with the roar of the sirens that no one could mistake. An ambulance. Here to help you and take you to the nearest hospital where the staff will then take care of you. But how do they take care of us mental illness patients? I ask. What do I do if I have no where else to turn except for options on the outside for my own demise? How can I stop the mind metaphorically bleeding and literally bound with screams of terror. I imagine myself in a crowd looking up to the sky and screaming as loud as I can. No one can hear it but me, but it hurts so much you’d think everyone could have felt it. What am I going to do? I don’t want to have these thoughts. Morbid as could be, these don’t belong here. This wasn’t always my way of thinking, what happened? I scream to let it out, I beg in my head to get it to stop. I wail inside my mind. I imagine things I won’t even say, but the terrors ring true and through and through each day. I’m going to break. No, I can’t, I’m strong enough to deal with this….right? I’ve dealt with bad things before only then I knew it would be ok. Now, suddenly like a light switch it flipped the other way. Omigod, my mind won’t stop thinking these thoughts. Thoughts of ways to try and make it better, and thoughts of ways I thought would make it better but see now it was just the opposite. *Scream*….always in my head I scream. People talk to me these days and don’t realize how deep in thought I always am. Screaming myself to sleep. I toss and I turn not knowing what to do, as my mind races with fantasies of how I could get it all to stop for once and for all. I’m going to do it, I have to. I need the release more than I can take in air at this point. But I can’t. It’s not healthy, it’s not smart and it’ll leave me with scars deeper than the wounds in my heart. I did it earlier though, that day I pulled off the road. I did it then because I’d heard of other people doing it and I wondered if it helped, not even to ease the pain, but to ease something. And it did for a moment. But alas, the death of you and it’s will for your taking can be the strongest thing you’ve ever encountered. It just leaves me with another reason to feel ashamed. Another thing I’ve failed at, and didn’t take the healthy route. And for just a second everything on the inside is physically real and the same on the outside, which almost makes me feel more normal again. But it all comes back just as instantaneously, and I am wading around in the depression again, only now it’s worse. Because depression carries with it such significance of guilt and shame that you think it couldn’t grow any more. But then you do something that you know other people would look down on and realize your hole just dug a little deeper. But make my mind stop, please. Make the echoes into the night not sound like the sirens of tornadoes coming. Let the screams stop and the morbid visions take a break. I’m already in a mental hell that no one really believes, all I feel is alone and all I want is to feel whole again. But was I ever whole? I think back to the days in school where I’d have a bad one and just cry. Another thing I always do…..cry myself to sleep. And I hate it because my mom can always tell when my eyes are puffy so I never have a good enough excuse. What do I tell her now?

I tell the Dr. about what’s going on. I show him the aftermath of it all. “Andrea, I think I’d like you to go to the hospital,” he says. “But what can they do for me there?” I ask him. “Well, they have ways of helping people that are in this dire of need, and I think you’re there.” He points out. Suddenly, my father’s face flashes before me. He’d come home early from work and bolted into my room ripping my sheets off while I was napping. “Andrea, mom says you’ve done something to yourself, are you ok?!” As he gives me a once over. He looks frantic. “I don’t know what I’m doing anymore,” I tell him. “I just don’t know.” Earlier that day, I’d come home from the Dr. and tried to hide everything that had just happened with my cheery attitude. An attitude that everyone can see right through but I’d have no idea until the haze of all this doom would wear a little more thinly.

“Ok,” I tell the Dr. with a big sigh like this is never going to work. And so I head to the hospital. One thing about the depression is that it leaves an anger inside of you. Not overtaking you, but enough so that you are bothered by the things that you see more so now than ever. I’ve never liked too much attention and am kind of always the one hiding in the corner, coming out when my comfort zone has arrived, so when I went to the hospital, I was depending on some secrecy about the whole thing. I mean that’s what they give patients right, is privacy? But that day they didn’t. The stripped me of my clothes and took out anything from the room that I could hurt myself with, then made sure the door was wide open and left it and me there for the next six hours. People would walk by, looking in and staring at me just long enough for me to grasp what it was they were thinking? I wonder what she’s in here for? Or, the judgmental looks. I was utterly humiliated and finally grabbed my clothes that were in a bag and walked out. This would be the thing I would become best at…running away. You take a young girl, feeling vulnerable and exposed as it was, then take her clothes, strip her of her dignity and make sure the door is open wide for all to see, the suicidal one, and I’ll give you a pissed off person once so strong, who still to this day feels the exposure of that moment, seeing the eyes of the judgments walking passed.

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