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TW: Mention of suicide. National Suicide Prevention Lifeline: 1-800-273-8255
Saturday, September 26th 2015:
The air felt cold as the wind blew around me. I looked down from the ledge and saw the water crashing against the rocks. Do you think it would hurt? They say that people die instantly and there would be no suffering but you know when you are in a boring class or when something bad is happening and it feels like a minute is an hour? What if “instantly” still feels like that? What if the pain is what kills you more than the fall itself? I was high above the river on the bridge. No cars were passing by and even if they were I doubt that they would stop. I kept thinking “this would be quick and clean.” I wanted it to be quick and clean. I also want someone else to find me instead of my parents. I was on my way to Ryder’s house for another fire and I just wanted to see what it felt like for a minute to be inching close to death and I’m not going to lie it felt…peaceful. The wind blew through the trees. The steady sound of the water below was tranquil and I thought I would just drift until my feet were no longer touching ground. It was the most peaceful feeling I have ever experienced. But as my phone buzzed in my pocket I knew that it was time to come back to this reality.
At the fire Ryder and I sat on opposite sides. Talking as the amber glow of the flame reflected off of our faces. His friends sat closer to him than they did me. The weird thing about small towns is even if you don’t tell anyone what happened to you everyone finds out. Not from Ryder, not from my parents but because the paramedic is someone’s sister, and the cop was someone’s dad and the nurse at the hospital was someone’s uncle and it all gets back. I was no longer Gray to these people I was the kid who tried to commit suicide.
I felt two hands cup my eyes. They felt soft and warm. I slowly pulled them off of my eyes and turned to see her standing there. I stood up and she lunged in for a hug. Her smile said she missed me but I was confused, I hadn’t heard from her in so long.
As the night went on she told me that her phone got disconnected until this morning. She called Ryder to make sure I was going to be here. I didn’t know if I believed her but I had no reason not to. She pulled me away from Ryder and his friends. Under the moonlight in the woods, her lips pressed against mine and I felt all the pain lift away from me if only for a minute. Her lips were so soft, her breath tasted like winter mint and I never wanted to move from that spot.
Sunday, September 27th 2015:
Alia was texting me again. Maybe her phone really did die. Each message she sent me made me feel warm and smile so hard that it started to hurt. Something still just didn’t feel right. Not with Alia but inside me. I was nervous to see Dr. Tyngsburg tomorrow. She promised she wouldn’t read you and it was just for me. I take you everywhere because I don’t want my parents to see. I’m sure if she reads you tomorrow, we’re going into code red and I don’t think anyone needs that much attention.
Monday, September 28th 2015:
Alia and I made plans for Wednesday but I didn’t know if it was enough to make me feel okay. School was awful and my meeting with Dr. Tyngsburg was “normal”. A lot of her asking me how my friends and my family made me feel. How I was doing, which I knew meant “have you thought about killing yourself?” I knew she saw through me. I mean it was her job to see through me but if at the end of the session she didn’t call my parents into the office I knew that I faked it enough to get out of here. I’m texting Alia and it just doesn’t feel right. She made me feel warm but it didn’t feel right. She made me feel wanted, but I didn’t want myself anymore. I wondered what would happen if I just went to bed and never woke up.
To my parents: You did everything right. I was fucked up and there was no fixing me. I hope the pain leaves you soon because I know this will be hard but I am better where I am now. It wasn’t because of a lack of love, I don’t know what it was but this world just wasn’t going to ever be what I needed to be happy.
To Ryder: Thank you for always being there and trying. You tried harder than anyone else and you were always the first to be by my side. Don’t feel like if you would’ve called me at 11:59 pm I would be here tomorrow. No matter what, I wouldn’t have made it.
To Alia: Thank you for trying to love me.
To you: My book of dead trees. You gave it your best shot but I can’t feel like this anymore.
I am sorry I wasn’t stronger.