As we researched some internet logs it was surprising to see there was as much, if not more, searches on suicide instead of cutting. Because this person didn't delete the history of searches it speaks to me as a cry for help
A few of us went up last night and it was hard. She was pretty broken up and had felt like, as the youngest, that it was uncomfortable. Didn't want to stay but also said "I hope its not longer than 5 days" which reassured us that she was going to work on her issues. She was fairly negative at first but we challenged her to name some good things. She liked the food and 2 snacks a day :-) she also said she had really connected with the guy that she was working with...which is no small feat as she has struggled with Males her whole life, especially after the death of her favorite uncle who had been preceded in death by her favorite aunt.
Again, the day drug on so slow yesterday. It was hard but I made it.
My sister passed away in Sept. 2005 and that following August was my mom's massive stroke which left her in a "semi-conscious" state for almost a year. About a week before her surgery my insurance had ended and I couldn't get anyone to fill my prescription for Lithium and actually did a phone conference with a Psych. who said "You are not bi-polar Michael." Now I had heard that several times after my original diagnosis in 1994. Mostly from professionals I worked with in the field.
Against my wishes I began a new phase of my life off lithium.
When my mother had her stroke and several moments of "dying" it was me that was the rock for my Dad and my nieces. I now know some of that was related to feeling "safe and comfortable" in crisis as BPD's do...for me that holds true unless its my own crisis. There is nothing more that buoys me than caring for those hurting.
I still had not processed Lisa's death and I think my lack of seeing things as they really were caused some of this.
But...when alone I felt this intense pain. Searing and something I couldn't fully wrap my head around. Yesterday my wife went to lay down and I began to feel emotional. That was when I wrote yesterday's entry. I couldn't Not focus on it so writing was my cathartic way to cope.
I struggle a lot with fundamental Christianity. While I think my spiritual life is as important as any other...I think Christianity needs to stay out of Mental Health. I think something that is said or insinuated often is this "If only you had a better relationship with God" or "I believe he will deliver you"
These comments are counter-productive to recovery and those comments are NOT something that I believe enhances Christ's love for us. I mean...if you are a believer than ALL things should include Christ. To say things like the quotes above begins to put yet another thought in our mind that somehow we created this, that we weren't close enough to God, etc...it puts a belief that we can control our own salvation and that's is not true. Only Jesus guarantees that.
I've blogged at length about my Dad. He told me last week that God doesn't rescue us but rather he redeems us. That our prayer shouldn't be as much about material needs as about our spiritual life and redemption.
As I struggle with my own issues...including all the disability denials I know I have thought "God...you can make this right" You can touch the Judge's heart in a way I can't. While I still believe that I also see how my Dad's comment relates to this.
Let me also say this. I do believe God has his hand on this. I believe that fully. I may not know How or When or what...but I believe he does.
During crisis its hard to hang on to that positive....especially when I (we) see the pain of the world. Within my own circle of my wife and kids...I know I have let my own feelings about Christianity rob them of learning and knowing God. As the bible commands the head of the household be responsible for their wife and children's salvation.
I want to share a story where God spoke to me. I think I will tell this story tonight during visiting hours.
In 1994 I had just up and left one day to go from Chicago to Florida. I left my room mate and my parents notes stating that I had developed a Cocaine problem and needed to move to Florida and help raise my daughter Bianca (Now 24) who was 3. That room mate was the best friend I ever had and he could never forgive me...so I carry much pain about that.
About a week after my arrival things fell apart between my Ex and her Mom. We had been at a volleyball AKA a drunk fest. I had left early with Bianca and gone back to watch the wonderful world of Disney and she had fallen asleep. About 10 my ex and her Mom came through the door in a full fledged argument. Screaming and my ex's Mother threw a 48 ounce super big gulp and just missed Jennifer (the ex) she freaked out and said Michael and I and Bianca are leaving and going back to Chicago. This caused her Mother to freak out...telling us we could go but no way her baby girl (grand daughter) was coming. We called the police and they literally had to take Francis down to get Bianca from her
Now I hadn't fully shared with Jennifer that I wasn't so sure we would be well received in Chicago. We had $25 and a tank of gas and had a 1400 mile trip ahead of us. I knew if we drove all night we would reach Chattanooga and have to call my folks and beg for money...and my father hated things like wiring money...and frankly I didn't know what he would say.
Jennifer and Bianca quickly fell asleep, my Cavalier was packed to the brim. I was a mess as I drove through Florida and then as I approached the border to Georgia I saw signs every few miles that the last truck stop offered prayer for anyone and I decided to stop.
There were 2 teens working and I mentioned the signs and that I needed some prayer. They looked at each other and said well that is something the owners do, not us, and they are home in bed. I awkwardly made my way to the car with a few tears...
I had stopped at a rest area to spend the last $2 on a drink and a snack for Bianca when she woke up. As I approached the vending machines I noticed a "dog" gingerly following me. Now...this dog was barely a dog. Mangy Hair, a limp and a wound on his left side. Pitiful
My heart just sank...I knew my $2 was meant to buy some water and crackers for him. I carried him back to my Car and just realized I had no way to fit him in. I wanted to drop him off at a vet in Atlanta.
Tears streaming down my face I fed him and petted him. Pulling out of the rest area I felt so sad I could see him watching us.
Then I heard this powerful voice say
"Michael, look how much you loved that dog. Now realize how much more I love you."
Any doubt I ever felt was permanently washed away. I hate people who interrupt the Bible to their own beliefs. Some are judgmental and others may just ignore people in pain. To me...it all comes down to 1 verse
Of faith, hope and Love...the greatest of these is love.
I think tonight I need to share more with this person about what God means. When my own wife had a breakdown and was hospitalized in 2008 I told her that I had no more answers but to turn this family over to God. Oh we were blessed. I was paid $600/month to stay home and care for my wife and kids...even though rent was $1000 and bills another $800 we made it 2 years. We were attending a church and felt like we had a home. Unfortunately the church had some issues and specifically with the head pastor.
From age 10-15 my family was involved with an awesome church, my father an elder so I had constant access to anyone, including the senior pastor. So some of my resistance is my issue. I also simply believe Christianity gets it wrong more than right in our modern times. I'm sure that may upset some but I encourage those that feel like that to take it to God. He is the way the truth and the light...not any pastors or elders. Their role is support but that is often replaced by judgement or something close to that.
So day 2 of the crisis is beginning. I will see you all here, tomorrow.
Michael can't fix this person's problem and that is hard for me
I hope you all listen to today's song. It is so beautiful and speaks to the heart of my beliefs