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Your suicidal thoughts and feelings may not be “wrong.”
Just to preface, I do not condone self harm or abuse in any way shape or form.
It seems to be the case that our bodies are gifted with an intelligence, separate to our conscious control. When we feel hungry we eat, thirsty we drink. We blink, breathe, sleep, and our heart beats all without any manual control.
Some of these can be overridden, some cannot.
Our bodies function as a survival tool for this world and they’re usually well equipped to do so. They simply “know” what we need in order to survive and they communicate this to us through thoughts and feelings.
For example, have you ever had a “bad feeling” about something? It may have been a person or a place, but something inside you knows that whatever it is, is not right, good or safe for you... for reasons unknown to you at the time?
That type of sensation we often refer to as, our instincts, or our gut feelings. They are examples of our bodies ability to know things in ways we do not, and at times it can be frighteningly accurate.
That’s the intelligence your body has!
Our bodies know when things aren’t right for us, when something causes us to feel sad, it’s not a choice, it’s a natural reaction, we don’t need to experience something and tell ourselves “I am going to be sad about this now”... you just become sad.
So, given the body tends to know more often than not what’s right for us, how do we begin to explain the demon of depression and how it makes us feel, surely feeling depressed and suicidal is wrong?
In some instances the answer is of course YES!
If you have legitimate chemical imbalances as is the case with some of my family, then like any other disabling element of health it’s not fair or right for you to live with... however ...
With some variations of depression, mine included, *and to be honest I have been on medication though I took myself off*... there is a possibility that this awful sensation we label depression is actually our bodies intelligence demanding something be done, begging for a change, pleading for an action step.
That being said, we can assume our bodies are here as partners in our happiness, it wouldn’t want us to suffer or die unnaturally.
Whilst our bodies can take care of the systems I mentioned earlier, it can do very little autonomously about or environment or who we choose to be.
It cannot usually change our location, our friends, our family, our job, our values or desires without an input from us.
But what is my depression asking me to change? Will making this change make it go away? Why would my body, that’s designed for survival, want to kill itself?
Unfortunately I do not know your individual circumstances and give you the solution, depression and anxiety tends to be a multi faceted problem... but what I can offer you is an invitation, an invitation to reframe these terrifying and miserable feelings into something possibly more helpful, show you back to some sense of safety and control, and hopefully to remove some confusion.
What worked some wonders for me In my situation, when I found myself very depressed and often desperate for an escape, was to go within and identify who the hell I was, and what I thought about each aspect of myself.
I found a lot of good, but also a chunk of stuff that needed recycling or throwing away.
I found I was hesitant, I was a people pleaser, I was a “nice guy”... I found these things and so much more, that had served me up until a point in various ways, but that were no longer necessary, or needed to be modified!
I found desires values and goals that were corrupt, outdated and flat out useless, I knew I had to change, and then something clicked!
I began to alleviate some of my torment when I started to think of depression as a request for change, just like thirst requires water to alleviate and although water is a simple request in today’s world for most of us, ignoring that request would lead to suffering... so then could depression the suffering felt by our bodies for a thirst we’re not sure how to quench?
I want to invite you to consider it a request for a character/ ego overhaul.
Investigate who you have become, see your values, your goals, your aspirations, witness your habits, addictions and really figure out who you have become—then, decide to analyze these characteristics alongside what you resonate with. If you don’t know what you resonate with, finding out can be task number one. Once you have discovered a handful of these aspects of self, and it may take a little time, it’s time for you to decide what needs to be thrown out, modified and what can be kept.
My example would be that I have spent my entire life training as a singer, I wanted to be famous.
I wanted that because my goals were to travel, help people on a grand scale via the music and via the money I made from said music, so both emotionally and physically.
I was also the victim of neglect as a child and teenager so I had something to prove, which may still be true and I’m working on it... but to this day I still do want that dream to manifest and I’ll never give up.
However... I decided that I was sacrificing a lot of happiness now, for a dream in the future....
I used that future life to justify my current crappy situation and that had worked for a long time, but I believe my body was beginning to grow tired of postponing happiness that was within reach for a future not yet here.
Once I had identified that, I asked myself if that value needed to be dropped, modified, or kept.
I decided that life was too short to spend sacrificing the days I had for an imagined future so it would need to be modified or dropped.
I also decided that really there’s nothing wrong with wanting to be a phenomenal vocalist and having a desire for success in the future, but as the saying goes:
“The future is a place you should visit but not live.”
So provided I don’t let that dream stomp out the life I’m living right now, it was okay to keep on a modified intensity. You see?
Your future can’t always compensate for your present and you must honor the present.
You must live the life you have right now.
So, what I did was look for areas where travel and helping people were options in much easier to enter careers or situations, and I’m happy to say I’m now working towards those goals!
I have found ways to live a lifestyle where those desires and goals can be achieved in the more immediate present, whilst not losing something I’m passionate about!
I also ended a relationship, it started beautifully but became toxic for reasons that were unclear... I had a hard time letting go, but again, sometimes your body knows it’s not right.
I believe that you do these things too!
Your body exists in the present moment, it’s your mind that looks back and projects forward, but it’s your body that feels.
So we must attend to the present.
Suicidal thoughts and depression are frightening and absolutely terrible to endure.
My heart sincerely goes out to you, but they may be directing you to a re casting of yourself, an update, a change... they may be telling you it’s time to let your old self die and evolve.
To be clear, I do not mean you should harm your physical self.
You are your own person, and some parts may no longer resonate with who you’re becoming or are supposed to become...
The pain you're going through may be the birthing pains or a new you, and it begins without your consent, through you bodies intelligence. It knows how to improve itself or become happier, to do that may require a death of ego—a death of who we know ourselves to be and that, as with any ending can be painful.
I will now choose to see depression and suicidal thoughts when they arise in me, as an opportunity for the rebirth cycle to occur, the dark before the dawn, beginning with death... the painful confusing time that you may be in as I was, But by the next stage, of which I’m currently entering, which is my rebirth.
I’m now fortunately in a much better place and I sincerely hope that this perspective can help someone out there, as it did for me.
Look after you.