*trigger warning – suicide*
I had a dream the other night. It is a little difficult to follow, but hang in and see if it makes any sense. All of this is my own interpretation of things that I have gone through. None of it is scientific, medical or anything like that.
In the dream there is a building which is being refurbished. There was a route through from the top to the bottom via rooms and staircases. Due to the renovation work the route is not complete, so you can go almost all the way from the top and down, but the final two floors are only accessible from the bottom up. It was a bit like a giant hamster cage with different interlinking compartments.
In my mind it is dark and I feel an overwhelming sense of helplessness. Feeling like I am fading away, I go into the building from the bottom and hide myself away in a room with a window. I can see out and watch all of my family start to miss me, speaking to each other, pointing, looking for me. It feels like it goes on for a few days while I remain in this room and cannot seem to get up and get out. I can’t even bang on the window. They never stop searching, I can hear them talking in the floors above me in the building, I carry on watching them as they become more and more frantic. I don’t move from my spot, I don’t seem to have any energy to help myself to leave this room. The logical part of me thinks “get up”, “why did you come in here”, “what are you doing”, ‘what is wrong with you”. In the dream I feel flat. Moving would require more effort than I am able for.
Eventually my father-in-law bursts through the door and carries me out. He is speaking to me but I can’t hear anything. This part of the dream doesn’t last long because it is where I wake up. It is also the part I find the most difficult to talk about because I know NOW that I am so glad that he has found me and will take me somewhere safe and that everything will be ok. I can sense his relief, his happiness at finding me. At that moment it is not shared by me.
Since having this dream I have not been able to stop thinking about it. What did it mean, what is my brain trying to process while I am asleep. I have had a lot of different thoughts about it and some of them have been scary to think about. I believe that when we dream, it is our minds working away going through what we have been experiencing.
Over the last few weeks I have seen a lot of talk on social media – especially instagram – about issues like suicide. Awareness is being brought to this horrific thing. Last week was maternal mental health week. All of these campaigns are SO important, it is ok not to be ok. It is ok to ask for help. You are not alone and you are not crazy. There is no shame in getting help, there is no shame in going to the doctor. Taking steps to get yourself back into a better place are important and there is help out there. That cannot be said enough – when you are in a really dark place and you hear it, it is hard to believe. So I think the more it is said and drummed out, the more likely people will be, slowly, to accept that it’s ok, that they can and will be OK again!
During my recovery last year I had very, very low points as, I have said before. At the time I never fully admitted to anyone how dark or low I felt. In a way I don’t think I admitted it to myself. This dream seems like my minds way of taking all of the things that are floating around and putting them together in this story.
In the dream the house is busy but there are places no one goes. I slip away feeling as if no one will notice, and even when I see that they DO notice I am too weak to do anything about it. The system is not working right, the path is blocked. It takes people a while to figure out how to access me, to realise where I am, to realise that I am not coming back on my own strength. Watching this dream play out was scary, I wasn’t sure if anyone was going to come, I wasn’t sure if I wanted them to.
This is all probably very much a big ramble, but writing it out is therapy for me, if no one ever reads this it makes no difference. If you are still with me I hope that you can take away something that can either help you help yourself , or help you help someone else.
Being on the other side of it, my logical mind KNOWS that disappearing would have been the worst thing. I know that. I believe that. I don’t want to disappear. The point where I am rescued, in the dream there is no sigh of relief. There is no overwhelming sense of gratitude towards my rescuer. The mind is a complex place, and when it is not working optimally the whole of your life in impacted. As I said being on the other side I am SO grateful for every single person who helped me through. There aren’t enough words to fully explain how thankful I am. I think that is why I find remembering some of these feelings so horrible. Imagine not wanting to be found, maybe even being a bit annoyed at being helped. Writing it makes me squirm a bit, however I want to be honest with myself and be real about how things can feel.
Most importantly I want to remember that no matter how dark things feel, there are people who love you. There are people who are searching for you. Who would give anything to help you.
If you have made it to the end then thank you! I appreciate it was likely similar to wading through porridge.
Until next time