Thursday, January 29, 2009

My honest story and why you should be real too

There were two distinct times today in which I was sure I was going to die.

#1...after a breakfast and mid morning snack of koolaid and year-old nutter butters, my stomach decided it wouldn't cooperate and I spent the next 30 minutes to and hour waiting to expel a peanut-buttery back cherry liquid mess. But, since I have such a mental block against throwing up I just had to wait it out.

#2...Calls to the insurance company and wrecker service had been made, so my business for the day was handled. But my body was still freaking out. Around 4pm I experienced my first all-out chest contracting, stomach knotting, anxiety attack. It felt like the muscles in my torso were being ripped apart. Clutching a heating pad and whimpering, I finally fell asleep and woke up in significantly less pain.

I've mentioned before that bad days scare me. Today I got a reminder of the not-so-distant past when I could do little more than lay in bed and cry. This reminder caused even more crying, and fear that the dark days were returning. Its all very discouraging. In these times my prayers are usually limited to one word pleas of "Help!" or "No..." or, most common, just "God..."

I don't share this for pity. I just want to be honest. This kind of stuff is a reality for more people than you realize. Admitting you've hit the bottom is hard, and often humiliating. But this is real life guys. Pain is real. Being honest and telling our stories and knowing that they matter is vital, even if they don't always receive the reaction we hope. Our job is to keep sharing, honestly, and breaking down misconceptions and proving that pride is detrimental to community.

Some words that encourage me a little:

The darkness wins too often. Broken things build themselves in silence. People feel alone. People give up. People talk about this stuff like it's math or they don't talk about it at all...
We're trying to fight for people with kindness, with words that move, with honesty and creativity. We're trying to push back at suicide with compassion, with hope. We're pointing to wisdom, pointing to medicine, saying that hope is real, help is real. We're fighting for our own stories, our own friends and families, our own broken hearts. We're saying there's nothing we can't talk about, nothing off-limits. We're kicking elephants out of living rooms, making room for life...
Don't give up. Don't give up on your story. Don't give up on the people you love. Hope is real. Love is real. It's all worth fighting for.

To be honest, its hard for me to believe these words tonight. But I'm trying. I'm looking for the compassion and hope, but these are hard to see through the tears. If you pray, please include me and all the others searching for hope tonight.

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