• Alyse

Depression in Paradise

Let me talk about all of my problems while I sit in Hawaii... I'm going to go ahead and second guess this particular post, and feel guilty about it.

I've seen a lot of photos making their rounds across social media with similar captions along the lines of "the day before he/she killed himself..." or "this is what depression looks like..." The point being, here's a photo of a loved one who committed suicide, and this is what they looked like right before they made that decision. They're happy, they're living the good life. They don't look depressed. They most certainly don't look like someone who's having constant thoughts about ending their life. Yet, you know they are, because the caption hauntingly reminds you, their life is already over.

I'm in Hawaii right now, and only days ago I started having those thoughts again. Can I admit that on my own personal blog?

It seems I'm more likely to admit that here, then I am out loud. I wonder why that it is?! My point is, I get these posts, and I do believe that far too many of us relate.

How can I be sitting here in Hawaii, and be depressed? I am literally in paradise. I'm not allowed to have these feelings... or so I feel because of social pressures.

Personally I've been in my head too much lately, and in my book. Pretty much the same thing. I've repeatedly read the damn thing, and relived my past over and over again so I can catch last minute errors before we decide it's a finished product. It all started getting to me, how can it not. I was suicidal while it was happening, I write about that in my book, I've felt it a lot over the course of my life. This feels very important for me to share, especially while I sit here on this gorgeous island and everyone stares at me wondering "how can you feel that way, Alyse?" well, sometimes I do, does it matter how? I'm quite happy here. I recognize my blessings. I see clearly that I have a big wonderful family here with me and even more waiting for me to come visit on the mainland. I'm surrounded by people who love me. I have everything I could want and need and more. Why isn't that enough? Does it ever HAVE to be enough? Is ENOUGH really a thing to be accomplished? Is it this feeling of wondering when will it be enough, part of the problem? Now I feel guilt and shame over the other feelings I've had... compounding the issue... because despite what I have the people around me see me as someone who isn't grateful for what I have, or is that just my perception? What's real anymore?!

I am using my own emotions to illustrate how real this is for someone who hasn't yet acted on the thoughts. I've had the thoughts, and throughout my life I may always have the thoughts, and probably more often then anyone is comfortable with me admitting. My life will take me to both amazing and dark places. That is the reality for everyone suffering from suicidal thoughts. I have no advice to offer anyone who relates to this post, other then to be open an honest about how you feel. I try to be, here I am now. I'm being honest. The feeling comes and goes, and some days are much harder to get through then others. I tell my husband on those days. He hugs me and holds onto me until I feel like I can handle myself again. He sits next to me while I write posts like this to be a support. He gets me a glass of water, or warms up my coffee, because he knows that my writing is what gets me through my emotions, and I share with the world because I have no good reason not to. I have nothing to hide, or be ashamed of, or to prove about myself to the world. Someone needs to start sharing their problems, and I do it for that reason. Because the world seems to ask far too often, why do people do this?! So... well... here's at least one reason. You're not alone with these feelings. I'm not alone with these feelings. We don't have to be the people haunting our families with our smiles that are covering the pain we never shared, and they never understood.

Far too often I hear the stories of the people left behind who say "if only I had known..." "If only they had said something..." "If only I had read their journals..." If only...

Share. Open up. It's OK that you're not OK.

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