“I don’t want to . . .”
“It’s okay. Everything will be fine. You will get through this.”
My mind and I were talking to each other again. We had been talking for almost 1.5 years now—just the two of us. No outsiders allowed. Tonight, we were talking again. My mind pushing me on while I showed feeble resistance.
“You know you cannot win this right”, my mind went on.
“I do. I have tried everything possible.” I meekly replied.
“If something was going to work, it would have by now. Drugs haven’t worked. ECT hasn’t worked. Therapy hasn’t worked. Nothing is going to work. This is how you will be now. Is that what you want?”
“I don’t want this. What do I do now?”
“I will take you through this. I am the one in control. It’s time. You should give it another try.”
“But the last time didn’t work. And the one before that was even worse.”
“That’s okay. We all fail at times. You shouldn’t be afraid of going again.”
“But what if I fail?”
“If you succeed, this will end once and for all. No more pain. No more emptiness. You have been through too much already. You don’t deserve this. Nobody deserves this. You deserve to be at peace. Kill yourself and be done with it. You will make it this time.”
That was the conversation I had with my mind before my last suicide attempt. Nine hundred thirty-nine days to this day and I still remember what went on in my head on that night.
It was getting dark again. As it usually did. Not just in the sky but in my mind too. My mind was cooking up its fables of solitude once again. I was beginning to act out once again.
I made that attempt when I was alone in a room. My family was home, and yet it felt like no one was there. It wasn’t their fault. My mind had convinced me I was alone. What value does the observable reality have when the mind refuses to acknowledge it?
The attempt failed. It didn’t just fail, though. It failed spectacularly. It is one thing to be close to success and then fall just short. But this failure wasn’t like that. It was worse, much worse. I was no closer to death than I was on the day I was born. I had tried to die two times earlier as well, but at those times, I had gotten closer to death than this one. After the previous attempts, I either winced in the sharpest of pains or screamed at the top of my lungs. This time it was different. This time, I just lay there and let out a wry smile.
There was a moment of clarity in my mind at that time. I sucked at dying. I couldn’t do it. I just didn’t have the skills for it. My mind wasn’t talking to me anymore. It was silent as if silent out of pure embarrassment. Physically, I walked out of the room identical to what I went in as but psychologically; I came out a different person.
I shared a Facebook post about my struggles with severe clinical depression the very next day. The support of every one of my friends, old and older, put me on the path to recovery. My embarrassed mind continued to be silent.
That event put me on the path I am on today. It’s funny. The most emphatic failure of my life also became the greatest success. The moment where it was all meant to end was where it all began to begin. That beautiful failure taught me that our mind lies to us many times. I had believed its lies for 18 months. After that day, I finally got the courage to stand up to my bully. Not a physical bully but one in my mind. It was that day when I finally told my mind,
“I will take you through this. I am the one in control now.”
And the rest, as they say, is history.
This article was written for World Suicide Prevention Day, 2019. It was first published here.