So in case you’re new here, and are like what the hell is this shit, my name is Zakkarrii, and I believe it’s more important to share how I overcome these moments as opposed to pretending I am a carefree, adorable darling that never has any problems. This is one of them. This is where “the dragon your ancestors couldn’t slay” comes from.
This feeling has been growing since Tuesday and I thought if I just kept busy it would go away like it normally does. But personal demons have a way of finding us don’t they, so I’m not really surprised. I guess today was the climax of it. It was an easy day, I did everything like I normally would; coffee, smoke, eat, work. Nothing awful happened, (got a new job that I love and doesn’t stress me out) And yet, it just kept getting worse and worse.
I tried texting the “text friendly” suicide hotline (741741). That did not work. I thought if I “cried it out” that would help, and it didn’t. Thought about texting an actual person, but that never goes well. And then I thought about the kids who have killed themselves and the handful of people, strangers, who had messaged me and said I helped them and I got mad at myself. I’m not that person who puts a mask and smiles through tears, who submits to social convention and falls in fucking line. I get back up, all by myself, no matter how hard I fall, and I know deep down there is this tiny little spark in me that does not quit ever.
So let’s start at the beginning, what’s wrong? (we start this off with a desperate desire to kill myself)
Feeling useless, aimless, and disconnected from everything even physically. Feeling like my anxiety is choking the life out of me, and it’s incredibly pointless to continue trying to save myself. Like maybe I should just fucking go, you know? I hopped in my car and drove to Seattle for two months because I had to try and awaken that spark again. Then two months turned in two months in a different city, and another two months, and I don’t even feel like the people I met even remember me. That’s why I don’t ever fight my anxiety head on like this because I am a lot. A lot of passion, a lot of ambition, a lot of fight, a lot of trouble, a lot of love. That’s why I pretty much never go out with other people because I can’t time it the way I do at clubs or events. Because conquering social anxiety is an art form in itself and there’s still a ways to go before I’m…well, content. I feel pressured to be the ultra sleek, sexy girl (hello, Los Angeles, how are you doing?) and bitch, look at me. I am a freak. I get sympathetic “you’re pretty” when I wear no makeup and guys talking to me with that fucking swagger of “Bet you like it kinky.” when I’m covered head to toe and painted for the gods (for no other reason than I like to dress up…a lot). It’s the fear of fucking being disqualified for relationships of any kind because I have moments like these (that I turn around and use to make me stronger. September 25th, 2009, the last time I physically tried to kill myself and worked my ass off to not let any moment go to waste). It’s being taught you have to show your work, when in reality, people want polished, finished, glossy badass. It’s having a whole book’s worth of “safe statements, questions, replies” to every single social situation I could ever be in because if you think I’m weird now, oh god how you are not ready. Honestly, it’s getting up every single day and my first thought is “Today you will fail, and disappoint everyone. You will accomplish nothing and you’re better off dead.” and spending the entire day fighting against that.
And in order to actually recover and not just brace myself for another wave of suicidal thoughts, I must establish substantial reasons to keep living that even the darkest depression cannot touch. (little less desire to kill myself)
Which is why I heavily advocate having an arsenal of skills to draw from at moment’s notice, preferably creating tangible things (music counts). Logically, that’s something no one can take from you. That effort is still visible even if it disappears from your line of sight, it still exists. It gets stronger the more you use it, so put that on the list of reasons to keep living, because if the last seven years are anything to go by, honey, you do not even know what you are capable of. There’s remembering you are a real person who can react with other real people and sometimes you will have wonderful memories with that person. HOLD ON TO THOSE MEMORIES. Replay them over and over and over, and train that puppy to jump every time depression rears its ugly little face in your doorway and you have something to throw at it. Even if it didn’t last, even if it’s two second of a smile that made your heart flutter, the taste of your favorite food, even if the next second of that memory hurts. Hold on to it and (eventually replace that last one with a better memory, something focused on you). Another reason to keep going. Make enormous, ridiculous dreams that people will tell you are impossible and too ambitious, and work backwards from that seemingly impossible place and find the small steps you can achieve. (Developing more skills, future goals). Getting out of bed is a goal. Eating a full meal is a goal. Having one less cigarette today is a goal. Staying in a room with other people long enough to count how many people are in the room is a goal. I firmly believe you can do it. You deserve to know what true happiness is like, what a good night out is like, what it’s like to love yourself. YOU DESERVE THAT.
and so do I. So now we play a game of truth. (significantly less desire to kill myself)
Let’s not pretend that every second from this point forward will be a shining moment. I’m going to make mistakes. I’m human. The trick to fighting this, at least for me, is not “be perfect all the time”. The trick is learning to adapt faster every time you do make a mistake. I have been told this is something I’ll have to live with for the rest of my life, unless I take medication (tried that), so I have to face it head on.
I am not useless. I’m not brilliant, but I’m really really not useless. Aimless? I can’t think of anything solid in big context like moving or getting married, so we’ll go all the way back to the beginning. My reason for being is to help other people realize their best self. The fastest way to do that is to be social, so thank god for our beautiful technological age, because I can say nice things to people without even putting on pants. Aim? Be nice when I have the chance. Disconnected…food is probably a good way to start. It’s essentially acknowledging I exist, would like to keep existing and not be in pain from hunger. So let’s start there and work our way up to…reading a book (acknowledgement that other people exist and make things I can use to enrich my own life, it’s like two for one! *sigh*) Running away is not an option with a lease, and that’s just avoidance so looks like I’m just going to have to work this out. If people don’t remember me, it’s fine and slightly irrational to think so. This feeling is an extension of disconnection and sometimes you have to give a little to get a little. Maybe now is a good time to ask myself if I still need those people in my own life…to which the answer is yes because they’re lovely. Could I be less than my full force self? Mmm, yes. I suppose it’s time to learn about restraint or at least putting that energy into other self focused avenues (like painting and now realizing that most people are going to think I’m a crazy person, but if it helps one person, totally worth it). Remember basic anxiety-quelling techniques; deep breaths, look up and take note the room, list the things you like about yourself, engage and focus on other people completely… I’m not sexy, and I’m really over caring about it, just done with the whole thing entirely. Ooooh, mental disorder stigmas. Look, I have them, yes it does affect my life in like every capacity, no you don’t have to baby sit and worry about me. I promise to never call you when I am feeling suicidal (for so so many reasons and it is a promise I have kept up for years.). I’m a direct person for a reason and look what I just did (take care of myself). Yes I’m vocal about it, I wanted to be a psychiatrist so I could save people from the nightmare living like this is. There are other facets to my personality, my disorders do not define me. It’s really not “Anxiety presents Zakkarrii”. To be fair you are allowed to not like me, hell I’ll even let you not like me for this. But I do swing out like royalty from time to time, no, those are not “good” days and this is not a “bad” day. It’s called living and if you could be so kind to respect that when you walk out, that’d be great. Displaying cover girl, glossy badass…I’m young. I embrace it fully, which means yes, I am little rough around the edges (younger than you might think) and yes, my abilities are not diminished by you associating youth with immaturity, inexperience, and being problematic (I generally work pretty quick to correct my mistakes and typically don’t let superficial bitches dictate my worth based upon rigid and unimaginative outdated social hierarchies that require sacrifice of personal vibrance as an entry fee, but that’s just me). On being weird, it’s just generally turning obsessive tendencies into calculated ones to avoid negative social situations that could spike my anxiety, so I work hard, play hard, and sleep deeply. It’s just sometimes I like to actually be a person.
And as for waking up every day with that thought in my head, bring it. I beat it now, I’ll beat it again and as many times as it takes for me to live a full and very productive and happy life.
End status: not suicidal at all and incredibly hungry.
If there is one thing that’s truly saved me, it’s “I have to keep going”. You have to keep going. Sometimes not getting what we want at first, can lead us to places we never ever thought we could be. (before I got hired for the traveling job, I hadn’t heard back from my dream school….got the acceptance letter the day I left town. I still picked the traveling job. Still not convinced? Was dumped by what I thought was the perfect guy while out of town, learned a little while after that how our relationship worked was a textbook case of psychological abuse and yes there were scars, but I only see that rejection as a blessing now because we were together briefly. He came back three years later to apologize genuinely.)
And now if you’ll excuse me, I have to go eat my weight in pasta and watch Psych till I pass out.
Until next time (and yes there will be a next time)
Don’t be hungry for life. Be ravenous.
Zakkarrii Edison Daniels