The first attempt

I didn’t think I would be talking about this today. It’s certainly not the greatest way to kick off the morning, but I guess I’m not as uncomfortable about bringing this topic up now.

My thursday morning starts with an hour-long visit to Dr. A. She has been my Dr. Melfi for almost six years now. We talked mostly about the events and thoughts that happened over the last week, much of which are already committed to this journal. She wrote me some refill prescriptions at some point.  Near the end, we began to discuss my parents (lots to say, but always hard to write out, something I’ll do when I feel like it). In this discussion, we talked about my father’s CEA numbers (the tumor marker) that are coming up quite high. Though my mother had hinted at this result a few months ago, I haven’t been told yet exactly why that may be or if my father’s been checked for any cancer. The thing is that my father is a physician and my mother, a former midwife, so you’d think we would be a bit more upfront about our health conditions. Maybe it’s the culture, but I think my family’s moved beyond that cultural boundary, too.

Dr. A said she’s come to understand why I had such a hard time telling my parents anything, especially when it came to be about my health. As the time wound down, I mentioned how I will probably never tell them about my second suicide attempt simply because at this point, it just adds to their self-blame for my own illness. Then,  I began to speak for a minute about the very first suicide attempt, the one I told them about over a fax – a week after the fact.

When I bring up a story about my suicide attempt now, it is usually about the one that happened in August 2004. That attempt in 2003 hasn’t been on my mind lately, so it actually caught me by surprise.  I really don’t remember much of what happened because I was ‘caught’ in the middle of it by my college suitemates. I must have taken some pills and cannot recall making that trip to the ER. What I do remember is being told that I had to go straight from the ER to the psychiatric hospital. The stay at the hospital wasn’t very long, but I was pretty determined to not act like a ‘typical’ patient. I convinced my attending psychiatrist that I wasn’t trying to die. After the psych stay, I remember my therapist at the university counseling center telling me that she was mad at me for not telling her about how I felt. I remember that conversation making me feel like I wanted to die more than before the first attempt. It wasn’t like no one knew that I had suicidal ideations prior to the fact. For a good month, she and other therapists at the counseling center knew. To this day, I don’t think they thought I really meant it.

It’s odd to be remembering the night I “crossed the line” from just thinking about suicide to actually trying it. It’s a time I cannot take back; something in you just changes. I suppose I can write more about February 16, 2003, and the time surrounding it, but I stop here for now because I don’t need to be consumed by it for the rest of the day. In small doses, I can take this story. Maybe this is why I don’t think about this day that often.

I need to go to Target and buy conditioner.

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