Friday, 4 May 2012

Suicide Isn't painless...

Back in January I posted about my own battle with post natal depression and how I very nearly killed myself. Tomorrow, May 5th is the 18th anniversary of the day that changed my life forever. Its always an odd day for me. It doesn't get easier with each passing year but actually more painful as I move closer to it being half a life ago.

Of course I wasn't the only person deeply affected by what I did and today I have a guest post, written by one of my best friends, Kirstie.

Kirstie was a very big part of my life during that time and I know now how painful it was for her to see me crumbling before her eyes, knowing that she couldn't do anything to help me. 

Here's her story...

18 years ago I experienced a life changing experience, one that nobody, no one or any book could prepare me for, an emotional roller coaster or just 'life?

Let's just say that it was one of those experiences that you never, ever expect to happen to you, you know, the type that you see on the front of those shitty magazines in doctors waiting rooms on the front of 'Bella and Chat magazine', and on occasion one that has been mirrored in an episode of casualty or Corra, the far fetched ones that you watch in that fictional mindset that isn't real!

I was 21, and through a friend grew very close to someone, a mate that was relatively new in my life, she was a fresh energy, an enigmatic person that drew me in immediately and connected something somewhere for some reason, someone who would become poignant in my journey of life and naturally unbeknown at the time to me, a soulmate, a new best mate, Sian, some described her as bonkers, to me she was just a funky Smiths fan, dancer, mother of the cutest little boy you ever saw! 

To this day I have still not understood fully with the sight of hind why our paths did cross back then, and why now, randomly, and not as often as our lifestyles permit, we will hold that unique bond we have been blessed to experience.

Anyway, 18 or so years ago i moved out of home and into a little box room with Sian and her little man, situated within close proximity to my workplace, it seemed like a perfect solution, independence, helping a mate out, you know the score, coming and going as you please, no hassle from the parents. It was like being a student without the escapism of real life and bills!

As time went on I felt like I had become an auntie, bezzie and housemate quite easily. To this day would like to assume that i am right. I loved having a little man wander into my room and on occasion looking after him was like having that little brother that didn't annoy you etc.  

Time went on and we were best mates, there was no doubt about it, we were inseparable, like sisters almost and I will, to this day, having never had a sister, and having little, if any involvement in Sian's life would say if I could at the time have chosen one it would have been Sian.

I remember the day 18 years ago like it was 18 seconds ago... Just a normal day until the phone rang.  "she's jumped off the Haymarket" it was Simon, Sian's one off boyfriend at the time, "it's Sian she's in hospital".  Temporarily paralysed in shock the were no words, I couldn't talk, naturally assuming the worst panic set in, frozen in shock, my best mate, my housemate, mother of little man, nah, she couldn't, she wouldn't. Why? So many thoughts and scenarios flashed in front of me, the laughs we shared, and she does this, totally unexpected, incomprehensible, why, how!

Leaving work in the drizzle, one of those shitty days, crappy fine drizzle, horrible fine rain that drenches you, if my memory serves me right I went straight to the hospital, the drive seemed to take forever, tears flowing and adrenalin pumping me through the traffic, a drive which seemed like the longest drive ever, after arriving at the hospital I lied saying I was her sister so that I could see her, moments before she had been bought out of surgery, she was in the room, battered, dried blood surrounded the silhouette of her feet that i must say in no way resembled feet in any way shape or form, she was alive, but just, was it fair that she survived, a desperate unpredictable act that previous to her no one had ever ever survived , by a miracle, thankfully she did.  

As my eyes focused and through wiping my tears upon focussing I realised the extremity of what no magazine, book or episode of casualty could ever ever emulate, never ever had I seen anyone in such a battered shell, nor did I ever contemplate that in my 21 years I would, before my eyes i saw a sad sad, once strong, beautiful woman who I adored as a now frail, vulnerable ,desperate hopeless bed bound cripple, completely broken, splintered and shattered like a bag of sugar.

The worst aspect for me, as well as the obvious was telling Sian's mum, lying that she was in hospital and that she had a broken leg to protect her, as per Sian's instruction.  Months went on and a long rehabilitation was inevitable, hours or surgery, operation after operation, numerous surgeons rebuilding that body resembling a dropped bag of sugar, a once confident dancer facing facts that she would never walk again.  Being dependant on others kindness and diligence in the long painful hours ahead.

As a bestie on the receiving end my life was consisting of running around, hospital visits until like running at full pelt into a brick wall, I was smacked head on by an emotional train, Sian said she didn't want anything to do with me anymore.  By this time I moved out and we lost contact for a long time, exactly how long my memory fails me.... That to be honest bares no relevance in the present light of day, we are still mates with a unique undestructable bond, there for each other although we speak sporadically if at all, those days are not forgotten because once again she has defied all expectations, three more kiddies, numerous businesses and a very respectable mom, business woman and home maker, not only walking but more recently dancing again!

How can you tell someone you are so happy for them and proud of what they have achieved by themselves through hard work, grit and determination?

One thing is for sure her story sits within my soul every where I go, helping others to comprehend their situations of despair, inspiring those whose path crosses mine, and when I walk past the spot a shudder hits my spine.  I came out of it ok, bruised mentally and a dented pride at the time, but as the years pass I appreciate and understand the dignified and painful decision that was made to cut all ties in a protective way to recuperate independently and becoming nobodies burden, the guilt she felt eating her emotions back then is deep under the surface of what is exposed at face value that is, an inspiration, that is today to all Sianie To.

Love you like you will never know 'sista'x


  1. This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

  2. This has touched me more than you could ever know.My father took his own life 8 years ago. What a brave story to share. 

  3. Thismummyloves4 May 2012 at 11:31

    *hugs* you both xxxx 

  4. Kirstie is amazing. She never gave up on me even after I turned my back on her. That makes her one very special person. 

  5. I should have issued a tear warning. Thanks for commenting honey.

  6. I hope you find your friend again one day. x

  7. Fi. I don't have any words but I have a huge hair twin hug with your name on it. x

  8. What a beautiful post, this must have been so hard to put down in words. What an amazing thing to do and the fact she thinks so much of you still and holds this so close in her heart proves how wonderful you are Sian and how loved you are. Hugs xxx

  9. Tear warning!! What a lovely post, and a great friend x

  10. Justin Byworth4 May 2012 at 19:35

    Incredible courage Sian - courage to overcome despair with hope, renewal of a thirst for life out of a place of such darkness and courage to share it in your January blog and to hear and see the same events through the eyes of others who were hurt by it.  I can't wait to meet you at Cybher in just a week's time.  It seems a long long way from Afghanistan where I am now or Niger where I was in January and I think/hope you might be visiting with us - where the life of women, girls and Mum's in both places is also inspiring and tragic as these blogs show  .  As a man I can't begin to relate to what PND feels like but I've witnessed and lived with another through it - my wife after we started parenthood unexpectedly young and I selfishly pursued my work across the world, leaving her effectively a single Mum.  Big life lesson learned young. 

  11. Justin thank you for your comment. I was very young when I had PND too. Its good to hear positive stories of others making it out the other side. 
    See you next week.

  12. Incredible post. Look how far you've come and look how much you're loved. Celebrate that Sian and go hug your gorgeous girls. xxx

  13. I don't know what to say, what a moving story. I am really glad that you had such a close friend to help and support you through this. My OH has lost two close friends through suicide, they were brothers and suffered with bipolar disorder. I have a manuscript that he had half written and emailed me to check 2 weeks prior to the event. You are such a brave lady. Xxx

  14. I can empathise with Kirstie - I have someone very close to me try to do the same in a similar situation, using my car, a vacume pipe threaded from the exhaust through a gap in the window and a bottle of JD with the engine switched on...she was utterly desperate and at the end of reason - thankfully she survived and has become as strong and as successful as you Sian - she has a beautiful 19 yr old son and has achieved so much. I'm proud of you both so much.

  15. I don't have as much time to read many posts these days as I used to ( thanks to my new darling baba Olivia), but I knew this would be definitey worth reading..and crying along the lines...I hope you have a nice day tomorrow, and just to let you know, I am very happy I know you, you rock ;)))) xxx

  16. Anya from Older Single Mum9 May 2012 at 16:54

    I've just read your story in Easy Living Magazine. Am honoured to be on the same page as you. This piece is a wonderful tribute, incredibly moving and full of love. What a beautiful, special friendship you share and what an inspiring woman you are. Don't know you yet but Best of Luck with Cybher. Huge Congratulations on living life - not just surviving!

  17. Wow.  Thank you for sharing these intimate words.  It's a terrible story, but a beautiful one - one warning others of the pain that they themselves can inflict on those they love so much, simply by only thinking of themselves.  Thank you for sharing all of your story, Sian.  It's beautiful to see where you are now!

  18. Wow Sian. Wow Kirstie. Kirstie I've never met you or read words written by you but you both totally rock! Giant hugs to you both indeed. As Katetakes5 below says - unless someone is willing to reveal their emotion it can go totally unnoticed. I 'saved' an amazing friend many, many years ago after an overdose. She too went into a protective shell afterwards and tragically I lost touch and have never been able to find her again. You are both lucky, so lucky. x

  19. Sian ... *giant hugs*

    Wish I had waited till I got home to read this, as now sitting at my desk in work trying not to cry (and look like a total loon).Having been in the shoes of both a friend of someone who tried to commit suicide, and a person who has tried to commit suicide, reading this was painful. I'm proud of where I am in my life today, but depression and self harm is something you never quite get past, and never ever forget. It's hard facing up to what your acts of depression might have done - reading this must have been bloody difficult for you Sian :(

    Kirstie, you're a credit to best friends everywhere x

  20. Kara aka InnocentCharmer26 June 2012 at 23:23

    Wow what a beautiful post if that makes sense. You are very brave telling your side of the story. Sian know unfortunately I was not so fortunate and my best friend succeeded in ending her life when we were 18. It still lives me with me everyday. I still talk to her when I am alone.
    You both are brave ladies. It's interesting to read the story from both sides. Love to you both.

  21. Absolutely beautifully written piece.  I have a lump in my throat.  

  22. Wow. Lost for words. Just shows how hard it is to spot someone in real trouble unless they are willing to reveal it. x

  23. When she sent it to me last night I was a sobbing mess. The thing about depression is that you loose the ability to see things clearly. 
    I can't thank her enough for writing this for me, regardless of how sick it makes me feel. 
    Thanks for commenting. x

  24. Oh Sian, I find it so hard to put words together with a post like this.  I still cannot talk or blog it, but I too put my best friends through a pain like this.  My best friend is the most amazing girl I know, our bond is unbreakable and I love her to bits for all the times she has picked me up off the floor, but also for the many many more memories and fun times we have had in the past 15 years that bears no resemblance to the pain we went through back then.


Thanks for taking the time to share your thoughts. Appreciated as always. xx


Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...