This is a Really Real Mental Health Post.
TW: Talk of suicide, including plan. Talk of weight/weight loss/weight gain.
There’s so much in my brain and I don’t know where to start. This ended up being super super long, but I need to get it out. Words of encouragement and understanding would be greatly appreciated.
Last night was really, really hard.
It started with boredom. None of my usual activities were grabbing my attention. I tried pushing through and making myself start something anyway. Just start, just design one card, just complete one quest, just plan one dish.
Just start something.
But I wasn’t able to. So slowly I felt myself drifting towards bed. Once there I couldn’t even bring myself to turn on the TV.
Laying there my mind was wandering. Is this the medication change, it’s supposed to make me less flat and sometimes it just doesn’t seem to be doing that. It’s supposed to help me eat less, and I thought I was, but yesterday morning I had gotten on the scale, and I gained another 10 lbs.
Inching ever closer to my heaviest weight. A weight I swore I’d never reach again. I worked so so hard to lose so much. Even at 300 lbs I was proud of my body and what it could do. I felt accomplished at the gym. I was far more at peace with my body, even though I still had a lot to lose.
I spent months working towards bariatric surgery, for the 3rd time, and right as I cleared the last hurdle, they thought that emotionally it could be very dangerous for me to move forward. I walked away from the program on the day I was supposed to set a surgery date. I still don’t know if it was the right decision.
That was when this latest weight gain started. I had already stalled with losing, due to the medication increase, but then I started gaining. We increased the medication more, and I gained more. First I noticed 10 lbs, then a couple of months later there was another 10. Then in the first couple of months of quarantine it just kept going up and up and up.
And as much as the numbers suck, even worse is that I’ve lost my ability to walk as far as I used to. My pain is worse. I get out of breath just getting adjusted in bed. Walking up to my second floor apartment feels like running a marathon.
I don’t feel proud of what my body can do anymore. I spent almost 2 years celebrating accomplishment after accomplishment, and now I’m back to living in my desk chair barely able to hold myself up.
And last night it crashed down on me. Weight is such a huge trigger for my suicidal thoughts.
It started with a quiet whisper. “You failed again.”
Then a little louder. “You’re right back where you were, fat and useless, and no matter how hard you work, you’ll always end up back here.”
With a little more force, “You’ll never overcome this, it’s not worth trying anymore, it’s not worth living.”
In the back of my mind I started telling myself. Get up, get dressed, go for a walk. You don’t have to give in to this.
“See, you can’t even do that, can’t even bring yourself to work on this. You’re such a fat failure and you’re just taking up space. The world would be better off without you in it”
Then the quiet voice again. Please, just get up, put on shoes, and walk. You don’t even have to change out of your pajamas, just get out of bed and walk.
There was a back and forth battle between the voice that wanted me to die, and the quiet voice trying to stand up and help me live.
I came out to the living room and checked some pill bottles. I don’t have enough of this, this, or that . . of course we keep most of it locked up, but maybe, maybe if I take all three different ones.
I started hoping that Wonder Woman would go in the other room. Go into the bathroom, so that I had enough time to take what I had. I know she’d notice if I took the pills into my room, and she’d definitely notice if I took them right there. I just needed to take them and go to sleep. Hopefully I wouldn’t wake up.
It was a calm sort of suicidality . I wasn’t afraid, I wasn’t rushed, I was just waiting for the right moment.
Just waiting in bed and listening for the moment when she got up from the sofa.
Instead I sent her a text. A that small voice fighting to live. “I’m calmly but intensely suicidal tonight.”
She asked how she could help. I didn’t have an answer.
Eventually, I heard her get up. I was waiting to hear the bathroom door. It would finally be my chance. But instead she turned off the lights and came to bed. We talked.
I told her my plan.
She locked up more meds, and I felt like a child in need of a babysitter.
And then I felt defeated. I felt, and still feel, like there’s no way out of this mess I’m in. This mess that is me.
We went to the store this morning. She reminded me that I had to stay alive to cook the food we were buying. I felt the voice slowly fading away. Slowly backing off.
I’m worried that these thoughts are because we’re lowing the medication. But staying on such a high dose is just going to exacerbate my weight problems. It’s nearly impossible to lose weight when the intense craving for food feels like a drug addiction. I can not adequately explain the drive to eat that has been occurring the last 6 months or more.
And you can’t just quit food cold turkey.
I don’t have any answers. I don’t have any uplifting ending to this post. I don’t have any feel good words.
I just have me, feeling like I don’t want to continue to fight.
I just have me sitting here, getting my words out on the screen so that they don’t eat me alive.