Though I am quite open about living with bipolar, I do tend to use humor when talking or writing about it. Laughing through the crazy is a crucial coping mechanism for me, but I never want to undermine the disease. There are many days void of laughter - many days full of darkness. Six years ago yesterday, was my darkest day.
To write about it in much detail is still too painful and honestly too personal, but there is a story of hope within that day, and I believe it should be shared.
My reality is that I deal with suicidal thoughts often, but getting to the place of action is managed with medication and actively practicing cognitive therapy. On July 15, 2009, those methods failed me. Reaching the ultimate low and wanting to escape life, I took 60 Klonopin with 2 quick gulps of pink lemonade flavored Crystal Light. In what felt like an instant, everything went black.
Twenty-four hours later, I woke up in a hospital room surrounded by terrified, yet loving friends and family. I spent 4 days in the medical hospital and was then transferred to a mental hospital for an additional 3 days. To this day, they are by far the most surreal 7 days of my life. I learned more about myself in those days than in every other day combined.
There is not a day that goes by that I am not eternally grateful for living. I am blessed to say that I failed at suicide. With Brett and Olive by my side, my life is so full of joy, love, and laughter. It doesn't mean that I don't go to that dark place, as it will always be a a part of this illness, but the reminder of their love makes life worth living. And so, I choose to live.
July 15th holds a special place in my heart. It's my personal anniversary of living and in many ways, it means more to me than my actual birthday. Life is hard and we all struggle with our own set of demons and difficulties. But life is so good too. Celebrate it! Don't let it pass you by.