An Open Letter To Suicide Survivors: You Are Not Alone

Joshua Earle
Joshua Earle

Hey,

The fact that you’ve bothered to read this means you’re alive. I know you don’t give yourself much credit for it but allow me just this once to tell you “You’ve made the right choice”. You’ve made the right choice when you choose to fight for yourself.

You’ve made the right choice when you choose to get out of bed no matter how much you’d rather slip under the covers and not see the sun outside. You’ve made the right choice when you attended that counseling session you dread and obsess about every second. You’ve made the right choice when you talk to close friends and family about how screwed up you feel in and out and how they can maybe help. You’ve made the right choice when you chose you.

Choosing ourselves. Isn’t that one of many things we struggle with? We have issues with permission. We don’t allow ourselves to accept love because we think we don’t deserve it. We don’t allow ourselves to admit that we’re fucked up and it’s painful and we need someone to help us get out of the pit we’ve dug for ourselves. But you’ve made the choice. You chose you today. I know it isn’t a piece of cake to do that each freaking day but you did it. And I sincerely believe that you can do it tomorrow and the day after tomorrow because you’re worth it.

You’re worth fighting for. You’re worth loving. You’re worth choosing.

Yes. I know you struggle with believing in this words. That they’re sometimes hard to swallow (let alone embrace). But that’s okay. We all do. And we all know (although sometimes we’re not convinced) that the truth wins in the end. And the truth is the darkness can never trump the light. And here’s what the light is all about, in the wise words of Jon Foreman: “The shadow proves the sunshine”. We don’t see the sunshine yet because we’re still going to and fro the seemingly endless tunnel. We don’t feel the heat and the hope the sunshine brings because the seemingly endless tunnel is dark and scary and seemingly impenetrable, too.

But here’s the thing. There’s light at the end of that tunnel and you’re strong enough to get there. And you will no matter how impossible it may seem because your story is worth telling. Because there are other walking wounds who don’t believe in love, in hope, and in recovery and you’re going to be the one to tell them that they’re no myth because you’ve proven it yourself.

Yes, recovery is possible.

But the road to it isn’t smooth. To say it will be messy is an understatement. It will be chaotic. Nerve-racking. Painful AF. There are days you’ll want to throw in the towel and just be done. There are days you’ll be in relapse. There are days you’ll just want to give up on the process and forget how far you’ve been from where you used to be. But you’ll push through despite the unspeakable agony because you know that we all have parts in the bigger story and no one else can play yours better than you can. You’re irreplaceable.

Your recovery is worth looking forward to. And no, don’t rush. Who cares if it takes you years before you get there? Nobody has the right ever to put a timeline on your healing. You’ll get out of the tunnel and see the glorious sun one day and whichever day that is, it’s nobody’s business. So shut your ears stop giving a fuck about what others’ say. Open your ears (and your heart) only to those who can help you survive your pain.

Yes, you’re still struggling. But just because you’re still struggling does it mean that you’re not on your way to healing. You are. Just keep walking. Just keep on living. TC mark

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