With all the terrible thoughts that began running through my head, I still had no idea what was happening to me. I began to get violent to those I love. I went on very expensive spending sprees. It was dangerous.
I kept most of what was happening in my mind private. Had I known what was happening I would have gotten help. I thought it was just something I was going through. I was trying to work at the time (one of many, many attempts to work) and it was making it even harder on me. My job was very stressful, and due to the noises I would hear at night, I could not sleep.
With lack of sleep paired with the stress at work, I very quickly took a nosedive into a realm of insanity that scared every person I love. It took me a while to accept that something was wrong, but I finally did.
One day, I was trying to give my daughter a bath. She wasn’t a very good kid in the bath, she would scream every time I had to wash her hair. Normally I would just deal with it until we were done and she would eventually calm down. This particular day I had not slept even an hour the previous night, and I went out of my mind. As my daughter was screaming in the tub, the thought crossed my mind to just hold her head under the water until she shut up. I just couldn’t take it anymore.
As I was about to do it, I ran out of the bathroom and sat on the bed. The baby began crying in his crib next to me and I picked him up. I was holding him and he would not stop crying. I grabbed a pillow and was ready to hold it over his face to stop the crying. I couldn’t take it.
Who the hell had I become?
I loved my children with all my heart, why was I thinking these horrible thoughts.
I grabbed my daughter out of the tub and put her in her room, and with both of them crying I ran downstairs and grabbed a knife. Holding the knife to my wrist I felt it was the only way to save my children.
I put the knife down and went outside away from the crying, and called my big brother. I knew he would let me “vent” without judgment. Being 5 hours away I wasn’t sure what he could do, but I called him anyway. I told him of the things I almost did, and he told me that I was not well. He told me to get help, as soon as possible, and to tell my husband.
I did not tell my husband what had happened that day. He was very moody and spent a lot of time yelling at me. He was suffering from some sleep problems of his own working the midnight shift, and I did not want to be a burden on him.
I quietly made an appointment with a psychiatrist. I talked to my brother daily and he helped me to stay strong while helping me keep my secret. He supported me and listened to me. If it weren’t for him, I do not feel I would be here today. I would have taken my own life had I not known I could call him and talk to him. He saved me that day. He saved my life. He saved my children’s life.
He was my hero.
Photo by Jennifer Chong, available under a Creative Commons attribution license.
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Last reviewed: 20 May 2011