Six Words.

“Are you going to kill yourself?”

Those six words dropped on me like a ton of bricks.
I was floored, and completely speechless.
I sat in silence across from Murr, hoping that he would forget that he’d asked me that.
He didn’t.

“You haven’t answered my question yet.”

My quick response was, “I don’t know.”
“Sure you do,” was his even quicker response.

And in that moment I sat there and pondered the question.
Was I going to kill myself?
I had already tried twice in the previous 48 hours leading up to that conversation, only to be interrupted by frantic text messages from Murr and Kristina.

That weekend I had all but disappeared from radar, leading to a host of people calling and texting each other to try and find me almost everyday.
At that moment in time I was okay. Well, as okay as I could be.

Saturday night I made the choice that my Refuge family wouldn’t be seeing me anytime soon.
I had made plans with friends for Sunday and had no intentions of letting anyone at church knowing.
That Sunday, I was a no call no show, which was the first red flag for some.
The fact that I wasn’t replying to messages and no one could reach me was the second.

“Okay now I’m worried. What’s up??”

No response to the 1:45 text from Murr.

“Hey, let’s go to the lake!”

No response to the 7:15 text from Aaron.

Murr texts again at 8:45 sending me the same message he’d sent earlier in the day, immediately followed by a second one:
“Please text something back so I know you are okay. It’s very unlike you to not reply at all.”

I sat there in the grass behind my apartment and read it over and over.
I didn’t want to reply.

Half an hour later, I finally did.
I wasn’t okay, but I was still there.
We proceded to have an hour and a half conversation via text message, until he felt that I was okay enough to not do anything.

I didn’t that night.
I told myself that I would give it one more day.

The thing about depression is that your body loves to stay awake all night and sleep all day.
And that’s exactly what my Monday consisted of.

3am depressive thoughts aren’t good for anyone.
They especially aren’t good for someone that is suicidal and has a razor blade and a bottle of pills at their disposal.

Monday, I was done.
I sent out what I was expecting to be one of the last text messages to Kristina, asking her in the midst of our conversation to tell all the other interns thanks for the laughs.
I wrote out a note, saying goodbye to specific people: Refuge, my intern family, my best friend, and Murr.

Lucky for me, Kristina is just as stubborn, if not more, as I am.
She kept me talking until she showed up at my house.
She stayed with me. She made sure that I didn’t do something that deep down, I knew I would regret.

Now that you’re caught up, back to Murr’s question:

“Are you going to kill yourself?”

As I mentioned already, my initial answer was that I didn’t know.
So Murr did what he does best, he asked more questions.
I changed my answer to “I don’t think so,” which as you could already guess led to more questions.
“So, if you don’t feel like it, you won’t? But if you do, you will?”

Once again, I sat in silence.
I didn’t know what to say.
I didn’t really want to say anything.

He went on to give me an analogy to ponder, that really put everything in perspective.
He began to tell me that when he married Jenn, he made a commitment to her, and that the commitment he made to her was not contingent on how he might feel at some point down the road.
He vowed to love and honor her forever, til death do us part, not until he didn’t feel like it anymore.

So again, he asked me the question I had been dancing around for the past twenty or so minutes:

“Are you going to kill yourself?”

Long pause.

“No.”

He then went on to ask me to list all the reasons why I shouldn’t stay and a list of why I should.
The second list was much longer.

When Catalyst rolled around on Wednesday, I sat with my back against the stage during prayer and just watched our students actively pray and journal and seek after Jesus, and it hit me: I had tried twice in the previous four days to take my life and leave them behind.
Tears slowly started to roll down my face.
How could I have done that to them?
I have a group of eight 14 year olds that have become attached to me at the hip.
That have shared some heavy things with me and so many laughs.
And here I was about to take that away from them.

“You are not alone in this.”

Six more words that dropped in my lap.

“We are all here for you.”

God’s grace and His goodness has been oh so evident these past couple of weeks.
Do I still have a lot of healing to do? Yes.
Do I have to do it alone? No.

I am a firm believer that people need other people.
That we are called to be the hopeful and to bind up the wounds of a broken world.
We are called to be the light that pierces the darkness.
We all have a story to tell.
We are perfectly imperfect stories still being written.
There are pages left to be written in, not only by us, but those that are a part of our stories.
And I have so many wonderful people writing in mine.

Last week I placed the second semicolon in my story; I almost chose to end my story.
I’m so glad I didn’t.

To be continued;

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4 thoughts on “Six Words.

  1. Wonderful. I have found your writing so poignant–and clear. Your lists are simple, but filled with so much thought and substance. Much for me to read and review. Golly, I always thought the Three Little Words were the most important ones–until that time came when even those three (I love you) would not be enough to overpower “Six Words.”

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