Suicide is a subject that people have tainted with confusion and shame. Yet after watching the BBC documentary Life after Suicide, I got inspired to write on the topic.
At 20 years old I completely gave up on myself. Life became hopeless, painful and very dark, complete with my very own voice telling me to die. There was no other option, Natalie had to go.
I begged for death to come knocking on my door, I longed to go ‘home’. I deeply felt that everyone would be so much better off without me. The guilt and shame I felt around my depression, anxiety and not being normal, pushed me into believing suicide was my friend. Survival was the enemy. Suicide was the very best way to escape this world and above all else – me.
If it hadn’t been for several key fearful messages being drummed into my head at the time, I honestly don’t believe I would be here today. These messages were tainted with criticism on people who commit suicide and how taking your own life equates to punishment in the afterlife, being trapped on the Earth plane and reincarnating straight back to Earth but starting your karmic evolution from scratch. It was also considered a violation against God’s will and the gift of life you are blessed with. My mother also declared it would be the worst act I could ever do to her and she would never stop grieving. Emotional blackmail was another label for it as well as lazy, attention seeking and pathetic.
This was all enough to put me off but it didn’t stop me begging for death to come through another door. (I was diagnosed with Cancer at 25)
As my suicide quest was more to do with escaping Earth and going ‘home’, the ideas of being trapped on Earth, starting evolution from scratch and not going back to where I belonged crippled me. Ironically I felt more trapped than ever.
Where exactly do you want to go Natalie?? Was often asked of me. Yet I knew I didn’t belong here, I knew there was a place of peace and love where I belonged, where I felt empowered and now I had been dumped on this crazy planet. Why?!
By now everything pointed towards Natalie not being able to survive on Earth and the physical pain I was experiencing wasn’t explicable to most people. I could not adapt to the changes in my life, I wanted out. My emotional needs were not met and thus suffering overran my life. Depression just 10 years ago was still an emerging subject, still considered selfish and an excuse to be low. Yet when you are truly depressed, it’s a spiritual illness chewing away at your soul and what better way to cure an illness than to destroy it all together. For me, death was the antidote.
Meaning also escaped my life. At the time the dramas had become mountains of despair in which I felt I had no control. Since the age of 9 I have suffered with self-rejection/ self-hate and anxiety so by 20 life had successfully thrown plenty of agonising “life-lessons” my way and that was just the beginning. If I couldn’t control life, at least I could control my death?
I won’t go into detail about the dramas and triggers that drove me to feel death was the only option. I am sharing this because at the time I thought I was alone. Now having done 10 years of research on the subject of self-hate, depression, anxiety, cancer and loads of spiritual or soul-searching techniques, I can safely say that suicidal thoughts saved me. They pushed me into seeking answers as to why I would reject myself. Why would I consider death the perfect option? Why did I believe I belonged to another world, why was I seeking ‘home’? What is home? Why would I beg God to kill me? Why did I have a voice telling me I was too pathetic to kill myself? Why did I not value my own life?
My commitment to reviving my life, rediscovering who I really am is purely down to the questions I chose to ask at the height of my crisis. I remember deciding there must be more to my life than suffering? Than being told I need anti-depressants for the rest of my life?
By no means did my passion to die end immediately; in fact it’s been a slow diminish with brief episodes still affecting me. These feelings of needing ‘out’ and wanting to die normally happen when I feel worthless, trapped and see no end to my suffering. Yet they ALWAYS pass but it’s up to you to make the decision to see yourself in the bigger picture and not labeled by your immediate affairs. It’s also the opportunity to breathe and allow the passing darkness to temporarily be. There is nothing wrong! It’s a fleeting crack in your spirit’s quest to make you whole again.
So now when these haunting episodes of suicide venture into my life, I use them to further develop my healing. They are my signposts that I must keep going, trusting and accepting my place on Earth. I must pray, ask for help and keep learning. I personally believe that the feeling of being trapped and incapable of living triggers suicide. I feel so much empathy for those that actually do take their lives because they honestly don’t see another option. They really do firmly believe their family and friends are better off without them. The pressure of life has become so big, so painfully real that death is a relief. Death warmly greets you because in death the unknown welcomes you home, you no longer are the character you once were and perhaps you can start again.
I don’t believe committing suicide means you are punished, trapped on Earth or any other horrible ideas people come up with when someone takes their own life. I believe that a person who has become isolated and trapped in their own body and seeks peace from taking their own life, is a soul that needs desperate attention, support and compassion in the afterlife. Self-love and respect has gone when someone chooses to end their existence so why would they be punished? Why do we not talk about the stigma attached to the subject and learn how we can support people going through this silent and deadly journey?
If someone suffers in silence – how can anyone help or understand?
I know many people disagree with me, especially on the topic of karma but those people haven’t been suicidal. They haven’t experienced the extreme fear, pain and physical sensations that come with considering suicide. They don’t understand how the person taking their life genuinely believes you are better off without them. It’s not selfish. Suicide is their idea of relieving you. The crippling guilt they feel when others are suffering because of them is enough confirmation that they must die.
I now pray for life, to live. I am a believer that there are so many incredible ways to help yourself revive, live and see the light. With time, support and honesty, it is possible to break free from self-hate, depression, helplessness etc. It’s because I have been committed to this task for 10 years and continue to do so that I want to spread the word – we can transcend our fear of being our true self.
I can’t write this and say I am the happiest person alive, but I can say I am a very different person. I am aware, I am awake and I am determined to be there for others who are beginning to question themselves. That questioning will either lead to great revelations, insights and magic or on a negative note it will drag you down in despair. Even so, the questions eventually lead you into the place you need to be.
Whatever your journey, be honest, learn to forgive yourself but above all else, start to look beyond the concept of suicide to what is driving that thought or option in the first place. It goes beyond not seeing a way out, it’s your soul shouting for you to see that the very best option is coming home to you.
Suicide is a signpost, a direction, your calling to see the bigger picture. It can so often mean your heart is starved of life, of opportunity and possibility.
Don’t give up on you. Look in the mirror and say thank you to the voices that are tormenting you for they are the very voices that will lead you back to your authentic self. They are the masks that cover up your light, and when they start shouting, it’s time to sit down, breathe and take a look beyond the darkness. Ask for help, ask another person to listen with no judgment. Get it off your chest, write it down. Keeping it locked inside is a deadly act and the negativity soon chokes you.
If you can detach from your circumstances, all that is left is the now, the present moment where you are breathing and nothing else matters. That is the meaning of life, your beating heart, your spirit entwining with the very air we all breathe – it’s okay to exist, to share who you are. It will pass.
Easier said than done? Maybe but I did and I’m still here.