Trigger Warning For Suicide Discussion:
This is it.
It would be this easy to end it.
It would be this easy to take a life.
He stood against the cold metal looking straight ahead into the scarce clouds that dotted the city skyline. The sounds of engines combusting gasoline and turning pistons filled in the gaps behind him that reflected the back of his eyes with imagery. But this what just background noise.
Just like his mind on a constant basis.
He slowly looked down to the waters below. It was so far down. Is this what I truly want? He fought back to look in his mind for any reason not to step forward the six inches between life and death. But he found none. He heard footsteps of people walking down the sidewalk on the side of the bridge. But no one stopped. No one asked.
No one cared.
His eyes began to water as the breeze from the river brushed into his reaming emotions. How did it come to this? How did it come to the point where he wanted to die? Where each day he went to sleep hoping he wouldn’t wake up?
He looked up as if he were looking for a sign from God himself. But again was met with silence. More clouds rolled in, the cars continued to drive, the people continued to walk.
Time stood still as he took a last breath and released the bar behind him, shifting his gaze from the sky to the sea.
His weight shifted forward and awaited the waves to crash into him below.
But just before gravity got ahold of him arms wrapped around his waist and pulled him back onto the railing.
Don’t do this.
He turned to see a middle aged man who had been out on a jog holding him to the railing. He collapsed into his arms, sobbing.
He cried out between his gasps for air.
“Thank you so much.”
The day before he sat in his bed motionless. The last month had been really rough on him. His depression and anxiety ate at the inside of every cell floating through his body. Carrying less and less blood, leaving less and less motivation to do anything. Anything at all.
Everything hurt. His head pounded. His heart had fallen through his stomach. The energy from every finger and foot had withdrawn to his center, only to slowly disappear into a small mist above him. Leaving him observing from the outside of himself. Alone.
A 23 year old shouldn’t feel like this. I should be out working and making a life for myself. I should care about my life. I shouldn’t be this broken.
At least that’s what his parents called it. He rolled over in bed to look at his phone and see if anyone had texted him, but saw nothing. He had a few good friends he had confided in about how he was feeling, but how could they understand? They don’t have a mental illness. They don’t know what it’s like.
As he continued to look through his phone he saw text messages he had gotten from his mother a few days prior. He seldom tells her about what’s going on mentally. Ever since he started having these problems in high school she always told him to get over it. That he needed to be tougher.
“You need to stop being such a baby about things.”
He opened a new message to his mother and stared at the screen, vaguely seeing the reflection of his hair standing in several directions. He contemplated for several minutes, typing out a few words and deleting them again. What would she think if her own son told her he wanted to die? She’d be heart broken.
She’d tell me to stop being so dramatic.
He closed his phone and threw it back on his desk. Frustrated with the hand that life had dealt him. How he longed to be normal. He didn’t ask for this. He didn’t ask to be broken.
But what was he to do now? He had exhausted all of his friends with his stories of what it was like when he was in his depression phases. They’ve understood all they could. When he was checked into the hospital last year they didn’t know what to say. If anything things have been strained between the whole group since. Mental illness still such a taboo subject.No one wants to talk about it. They just kept telling him to take the medicine he was prescribed to help. Anti-deppresents can fix anything.
This was his fifth medication he was on currently. They told him it may take a long time to find one that works, and to patient, but it’s been a year. How much longer was he supposed to wait? He went to therapy for the first few months after he was released, but the doctor was so disconnected. He was just another patient. The doctor didn’t care if he had lived or died, as long as he was getting a paycheck.
The day had passed and he continued to sit in bed. He tossed and turned all night as he traced the shadows in his room. Mirroring the connections with the demons that lurked in his mind. He couldn’t sleep. Luckily for him his depression and anxieties combined to give him a nice side of insomnia. Going with out sleep started to become easy for him. But now because it felt good. He hated it.
He rolled over again around three in the morning to look at his phone. He still didn’t have the strength to text anyone.
Please let me sleep. I just want to sleep and feel better.
The hours continued to crawl by until it was morning again and he stood up to go to the bathroom. Looking around his apartment he realized how much of his life that he once loved had gone away. A keyboard sat in the corner he lost the inspiration to play. A stack of video games he used to play with friends gathered dust. Pictures of his older sister he hadn’t talked to in almost a year.
What have I got left?
He left the apartment to go for a walk, hoping maybe it would clear his head.
He walked by people and felt like the entire world was looking at his failures. Their stares penetrated his soul. They knew he was a failure. They knew he was broken. They knew he wasn’t normal. And that’s when it hit him again. The pounding and the feedback. The little whispers of self doubt. The question that had been wandering in his head lost had finally found it’s way. You want to kill yourself.
I no longer want to be alive.
And in that moment he got a phone call from his friend who lived a state over, someone he hadn’t talked to in a long time. He immediately broke down because he couldn’t hold it in anymore. He fought back tears as long as he could as he walked back towards his apartment, describing his last month where he had been trapped inside himself. How it ate at him. How he didn’t want to be alive.
She was so taken back by it that she could only gasp after certain words. Her shock was expected, he hadn’t talked to her in so long. After a twenty minute conversation she had tried to convince him to go to a hospital, which he rejected after his questionable experience there last time. But they agreed that he should call a counselor and start therapy again. “Always call me if you need anything” she said as the phone call ended, feeling like the crisis had been averted.
Okay, I can do this. I can make this phone call.
He gathered the last remaining strength that was within his body, digging into the bone marrow that held his body together, and dialed the telephone after looking up a number.
“Hi, I need to book an appointment with a counselor.” he said.
After a few questions she asked what his availability was.
“As soon as possible. Any day.” He replied.
After some clicking and disruptive coughs between him and the operator he got his answer. “The next open appointment we have is in four weeks, the 23rd at 3 o’clock. Does that work?
How can there closest appointment be in four weeks?
“Yes, that will work. Thank you.”
He knew he wouldn’t make it four weeks. He was again flooded with self doubt. He looked at his phone and searched for another psychiatrist in town. Finding one he dialed the number.
“The soonest we can fit you in is sometime next month.”
He hung up the phone immediately and threw it onto the counter in his kitchen. Pacing back and forth he debated driving himself to the doctor. He could check himself into the hospital again. But anxiety riddled him over how poor his experience was last time, how it changed his relationships, and how it put him on medicine with more side effects than positive effects.
His mind was made up.
He grabbed his coat and walked out the door, leaving his phone behind him,
He turned right down the sidewalk and headed for the bridge.
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This is… perfect. I love it, I love it.
I especially love how you actually started off at the cliffhanger and then backtracked to how the male got there in the first place. The appointment part is unfortunately very accurate, even for appointments for other specialists. There is always a wait for at least three weeks, and I remember that sinking feeling, knowing I could possibly not make it another three weeks… A week at max.
I hope you can see your own personal strength in writing something like this – because it hits so close to home. It goes to show that you are able, even though still struggling, to help others through similar situations.
I wish though, that it didn’t come during a time where you should be sleeping! Haha. Although, our worst experiences usually bring out the best in our writing…
Please continue to write and spread your stories.
Have a good day, Paul (:
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Thanks for your kind words as always Cass! I tried to write a piece that would show how understaffed a lot of therapists offices are, I read too many posts on here about people questioning if they can make it or not. So this was showing the buildup with him going through all the “solutions” but showing those don’t always work, and sometimes you just need someone to talk to in person.