It wasn’t even six months ago. I was at my lowest point. I’ve been in and out of depression for the majority of my life so it wasn’t a big deal. But this time, the depression was worse than I could have ever imagined and I couldn’t handle it. I got my dad’s 45 caliber gun and shot myself in the stomach.
I thought the worst was over. I was waiting to pass out and bleed to death. I was so naïve to think that I could just bleed to death. The thing was, I didn’t even pass out at all; less than five minutes after shooting myself, our house help came and saw me screaming and wondered why I was constantly moving and screaming in pain on my bed. She didn’t realize what had happened, even after seeing blood on both my stomach and my back (yes, the bullet had exited near my spine). She kept yelling, asking me what I had done. I couldn’t exactly answer since I was still screaming in pain. But even during the aftermath, I still couldn’t give an answer as to what I had done. Five months later, I’m still crying over recapping what I thought were my last moments.
You see, it’s not like in the movies. In the movies, you see some guy get shot in the chest or in the stomach or in the leg. But you still see them moving, being able to stand, even walking. I thought the pain would have been bearable, but it’s not.
Most people don’t know what it’s like to get shot. Even more so, most people don’t know what it feels like to shoot yourself. Drunkenly holding that 45 caliber and thinking, “Okay, this is it. Have I forgotten to say anything in my letters to my loved ones? Am I ready for the consequences to come in the after life?” the more I looked at the gun, the more cowardly I grew. I love so much of my life to leave it all behind, but during that time, the bad aspects of my life took over. I let them rule me and let me think that there was nothing more to look forward to, no purpose left in what I had to do. I had just lost the first man I ever learned to love; the man I thought I was going to spend the rest of my life with. I had slowly lost my family; we drifted further apart from each other, barely saying exchanging word even though we lived under one household. I hated my job and I hated who I’d become. I couldn’t bear to shoot myself elsewhere. I hid the gun under the blanket and pulled the trigger. But nothing came out. I fixed the magazine, cocked the gun, and pulled the trigger again. This time I knew it hit. At the initial impact, the first thing that hits you is the difficulty of breathing. The second is the pain. And then, along with the pain, all you hear is an eerie ringing in your ear from the deafening gun fire that silences the whole room.
As I laid there in pain, I could hear our house help calling my sisters, trying to reach my dad. Even calling my then ex boyfriend (as of two days). I just stayed where I was as I closed my eyes, trying to drift away.
I wish I could have just drifted away from everything. Drifted away, towards death.
To my luck, I was rushed to the hospital, hearing my sister’s hysterical screams and cries in the car the whole way. After two days in the ICU and a week in the hospital, I slowly got better and was released.
My parents are separated. I had lived with my dad, who was one of the driving factors of my depression. I’ve been living at my mom’s since that night of February 27, 2014 and I hope I don’t have to go back to living with my dad, but I know it’s inevitable.
I’m still not okay. I’m still a depressed being, on antidepressants and constantly seeing a psychiatrist. I haven’t fully made amends with my family, although my boyfriend and I promised to have a clean slate after that night. My life is not okay, nor is it back on track. But after what happened, one thing I was sure of was that I couldn’t throw my life away again like that.
I’ve realized that more people have it worse than me and they’re still fighting, without even so much a thought about ending their lives. And here I was, just a depressed 22-year-old who couldn’t handle the struggles of a normal 20-something-year-old life.
But after surviving, and many tears later, I’ve found a new way of looking at life in spite of my overwhelming depression. I’ve decided not to waste my life away anymore. I’m sure that I don’t want to try to commit suicide again, to put all my loved ones at the risk of trauma and depression again. I learned that it’s important to always make yourself happy, and even more important not to throw away your life, much like the way I tried to.
So for those of you suffering from depression and wanting to just give up on life, I say take a minute to pause. Is it worth the pain your loved ones will feel? Is it worth damaging the life and the hearts of the people around you? Are you going to let life’s struggles win this battle over your own life? Because you shouldn’t. It’s only fair to fight back and win in the end. Don’t let life overthrow you. You’re worth a lot more than that. You just have to look at the better things in life; look at your friends, look at your family. Take a good look and see if your death is worth the pain they’ll endure. You are worth more than you think. The impact you make in your life is a lot bigger than you expect it to be. You might think you’re worthless, but you’re not. You’re simply choosing to let your depression win over your life. And, as I’ve learned, nothing is worth ending your own life.