One of my 2 favorite known nieces lost a fellow classmate this week to suicide. This has caused a bunch of feelings and such to come back to surface. I didn’t even know the kid so I have no idea what he was going through. I imagine that everyone experience it differently but maybe if I share my experience it will help someone else.
I had been taking Depakote for years. Over time this medication is supposed to get less effective so I went to a doctor, went over my history with them and they decided to switch me to what I believe was call Lamotrigine. Lamotrigine is a drug that you have to slowly ramp up because it can have some strange side effects.
But for whatever reason the side effects were the least of my problems on this medication. Over the course of several weeks as I ramped up the drugs my rage ramped up as well.
Rage is kind of a funny thing, at least in me. Most people I’ve talked to expect rage is related to anger. In my case rage is related to fear and self-loathing. Once things start to ramp up everything goes into hyper mode. I don’t mean bouncing off the wall hyper, I mean that everything that is said to you is multiplied exponentially. The first little drop of water hits and soon it’s a flood. Your rage is you’re only defense as it tries to boil the deluge of water that is self-doubt, self-loathing, and despair.
You use the rage to try and keep people at bay. If they don’t want to talk to you then they can’t hurt you. But keeping people at bay keeps them from helping too. Something said in passing pushes your head underwater and you fight to get to the surface. You just pray that you can survive the flood long enough to wash to any shore.
But the last time it happened to me it had been going on for the better part of a month. And you just want it to stop. Anything to make it stop. By this time you’ve already made a plan on how to make it stop. I don’t enjoy pain so my plans usually are more convoluted. It always amazes me how simple this stuff could end.
Then the day came, the day it all fell apart. I couldn’t take it anymore and I was ready to stop it all. I was in bed with my instruments of destruction on the night stand. I was fighting with all my strength to hold out and I didn’t have it me. For anyone who knows me they should be aware that I don’t consider myself religious. Do I believe in a higher power? Maybe, do I believe it listens? Doubtful. Ghosts? Maybe. But I’m in bed and I start praying and asking for help. Help to keep me from doing this. Help to help me hang on for another day, a few more hours, to let this pass. I feel arms wrap around me and pull me out of bed and I feel myself bathed in love. I get dressed, get in my car and drive myself to the hospital where I check myself in while the drugs work out of my system and the new/old drugs get started.
I don’t know what would have happened if something hadn’t helped me that day. And I wish I knew why I survived and others don’t. But I can tell you it is a dark place where there is very little light and you feel like the entire world is against you. There is no tomorrow, there is no 5 minutes from now. It is trying to survive the next second and then the one after that. The sad thing in my limited experience is once you get to that point it too late to call some 800 number. Those are good things to have but those are for when you can ask for help. Once you’re this far down, at least for me, you feel like you don’t deserve help.
If you feel yourself going down this path. Get help sooner not later.