I feel like we all have those “this isn’t how I thought my life would turn out” moments. My most recent one found me as I made a boca burger at 10pm then climbed the stairs back to my room to wait for the results of a flash fiction contest.
I turn 20 in 9 days. This is something that I didn’t think would happen.
Over winter break last year (end of 2015, beginning of 2016), I began writing letters to some of my favorite people here at university. See, I was born on the 19th, so 2016 was supposed to be my golden year–the year that’s supposed to by magical just because your age matches the day of your birth. But I like neatness, and what better time to kill yourself than at the precise moment you were born at the dawn of your golden year? At least, that’s what I thought.
But I didn’t.
Because about three months before, I walked into the room I shared with my best friend and found that she had committed suicide. And it happened while I was out at dinner with my boyfriend. And I couldn’t do that to someone, couldn’t make them walk in and find me after I’d done that to myself. I couldn’t make my parents and my friends know what it feels like to have to explain to people that someone close to them decided to kill herself.
I will never say that Sydnah was selfish. I can only regret that I left her in her time of need. It’s been over a year, but just yesterday I had to rush out of class because I was reminded of the fact that I failed her. I worry that people will think that I’m using her for attention, that I’m just being a baby.
But I’m sitting here, still waiting for the results, hoping that my parents will never read this (but they’ve subscribed, so there’s no stopping them now). This is just the sort of thing you need to get out of you, whether through writing or talking or running–whatever works for you.
It’s being able to reflect back on those moments and offer comfort to people that doesn’t just sound like “it’s only temporary” because there is absolutely nothing more infuriating than hearing those words from someone who knows damn well that time is a relative thing, and mental illnesses have a weird way of toying with you in that respect. Just know that I’m right there with you.
It’s the simplest moments, man.