During a discussion about passions with a wise woman, she asked me what has been my biggest challenge to overcome, and how did I overcome it. I didn’t reply, the conversation went on but I knew immediately what my answer was. My biggest challenge in life has been overcoming the feeling of not wanting to live. When I was a teenager I attempted suicide, and every day since then has been a choice of embracing life for what it is, bad days and all, knowing that the sun is always going to rise the next day and give me another chance… if I decide to take it.
A fellow entrepreneur a couple of days ago spoke in an exclusive group I am involved with about the passing of her friend, and the 2 year old girl she left behind. Then another friend spoke up and mentioned she had lost her cousin to suicide and a 2 year old boy was left behind because of it.
Now with Robin Williams passing it has really struck a chord, like a punch in my heart that never really healed. I have actually shed tears for the man whom I never met.
I carry around a feeling of Shame when it comes to suicide, like I don’t really want to talk about it because it’s a black hole in my past that time and reality seemed to escape. However if I don’t talk about it, then I am not really representing the bigger picture of why I am here.
When I realised that I had to somehow incorporate suicide prevention into my business it scared the shit out of me. How does a life loving, Universal experimenter slash business mentor bring up the delicate subject of death? When I believe that we create our own reality, how can I explain the terror that plagues this world and our minds? When I am all about living in love, how do I abashedly stand for those still in the dark?
I’m still trying to figure out that answer.
Anyone that is depressed, or has been depressed knows that there is a supreme darkness that is incomprehensibly untouchable to anyone who hasn’t experienced it. I didn’t (and still don’t) want to stray too far from that unrealistic illusion of reality and leave anyone still there behind. I also don’t want to stray too far into the goodness of the love and light so I forget the language that only those in the dark understand.
Depression is like being in a cage with a lion.
Life is ok when it is dormant, you make plans on how to get out, talk with friends through the wire, laugh even, but when it gets pissed off or hungry then you don’t have much energy to spend on focusing on anything other than that lion. You don’t see your lifelines anymore, you just see a big hungry lion all up in your face staring you down, just waiting for you to exhale so it can take it’s victory. I guess that’s why people call suicide selfish. I can see how it can be labelled in that way, but sometimes, for some people, myself included, I got really tired of fighting the lion, and just wanted the fight to be over. So I took a breath and let it have me.
We believe that in letting the lion win, it will disappear with us, leaving all that we love safe and happier.
It doesn’t work like that. The decision to kill yourself actually has the opposite reaction. Every single person affected by a loved one who has committed suicide now lives and carries a piece of that darkness with them wherever they go.
If anyone is at all depressed, not necessarily now, but has been, and experiences their own lion from time to time, please tell someone. The lion might be strong, but understand that the power you are feeling from your lion, is a projection of only a fraction of the power you have within yourself. When you can feel its breath on your face, know there are so many people in your life, most of whom you don’t even know love you, all standing around that cage willing to jump in and distract, fight off or pull you out.
You and you alone can control your lion.
Love is the default setting of life. It’s what we overwhelmingly feel when our children are born, it engulfs our happiest moments in life, it is how life is meant to be lived. I still have my lion, but I stood up and claimed my power back, I made the decision there was a better way to live, and now I walk with my lion side by side, and we respect the fight we both endured equally.
It took a long time of persistence and faith of life to get where I am right now, and there will always be a sadness I hold in my heart for when I gave in. But where I was torn the scars of strength are forming. Strength to stand for what matters, for living a life unapologetically being who we are born to be, following our passions and at times, standing side by side those still trapped in the dark.
It is absolutely my mission, and the mission of my business Soulful Warrior to make people aware of both the light and dark of life. Of not giving a fuck what anyone else thinks and doing what we want regardless. Of opening up the lines of communication so people feel seen, heard and accepted. If you are experiencing your lion, I see you, I hear you, and I love you. There is a way out and while it might feel helpless to you right now, it is YOU that holds the power over that lion.
You are the master of your own life, and you deserve to live it exactly how want to live it, without fear or judgement of being exactly who you are.
No one really wants to die, that’s not what suicide is about. I remember crying myself to sleep for years on end with a knife in my hands just praying to be happy. That was it. That’s all I wanted. Honestly, it’s all everyone wants. You have it within you Warrior. I know you do. There is a way out, and no it doesn’t have to be by death. All you have to do is raise your hand, and we’re there. You don’t have to fight your lion alone.
Depression and suicide hotlines are like a stranger on a park bench you can talk to in confidence.
Please make that call, because when you’re gone you don’t get to see how loved you truly are. Call LifeLine on 13 11 14 (for Australians), and if you are in another part of the world, click here to find the number that is going to best serve you.
“Your move, chief”
Much love to you. Always.