Tag Archives: suicide

It Takes an Act of Faith

 

There have been times in my life when I have felt encompassed in darkness.  I have also reached the point where I have wanted and even tried to end my life… but somehow, I am still here.  I am still needed, as are you.  You are needed.  The Lord needs YOU on HIS side.

 

Safety Sleepovers

Safety Sleepovers

Overview

So, for those of you who do not know much about my experience with depression, I will give you a quick little overview.  I was diagnosed with Major Depressive Disorder close to a year ago now.  One of the ways that I chose to cope or maybe not to cope with my depression was by cutting and other self harm.

I spent many of my days during this time obsessing over ways to kill myself.  I would think about close to all the time some days.  I just simply did not want to exist anymore.  I didn’t trust myself and did not think that anyone else should trust me either.  My life was literally down in the dumps.

My Friends

I had a couple really close friends who were extremely helpful for me.  They literally saved me numerous times from myself.  I can never thank them enough for being there and for helping me.  I can also never thank my Savior enough and my Heavenly Father enough for putting them into my life when I needed them the most.

Safety Sleepovers

There were many nights where I was very close to killing myself or cutting more.  I longed for comfort and acceptance.  I was scared of myself sometimes.  It was at these moments, sometimes in the middle of the night or at two or three in the morning that I would either call or text my best friend who lived in the apartment just below mine.

She would ever answer and her roommate would be right there to help me as well.  My best friend would come upstairs and help me bring my stuff for the night down to their apartment.  We would then take the couch cushions off of the couch and bring them to their room.  I would sleep on the couch cushions lined up between their two beds.

They were there for me.  They helped to protected me against myself.  They would answer a call at the most inconvenient times.  They simply loved me.  They loved me as Christ loves.  They protected me as our Heavenly Father protects.  They were there to support me and to guide me even when I thought I knew what was best for me and when I rebelled against their help, care, and guidance.

These nights truly were safety sleepovers for me.  They kept me safe.  They took me in.  I am ever grateful for them.

People

There is good in people.  And there are people out there who need your help.  They do.  I love this quote by Jeffrey R. Holland (speaking of conference and hearing the words of the Lord):

“Each of these conferences marks a call to action not only in our own lives but also on behalf of others around us, those who are of our own family and faith and those who are not…As surely as the rescue of those in need was the general conference theme of October 1856, so too is it the theme of this conference and last conference and the one to come next spring.  It may not be blizzards and frozen-earth burials that we face this conference, but the needy are still out there–the poor and the weary, the discouraged and downhearted, those “(falling) away into (the) forbidden paths” we mentioned earlier, and multitudes who are “kept from the truth because they know not where to find it.”  They are all out there with feeble knees, hands that hang down, and bad weather setting in.  They can be rescued only by those who have more and know more and can help more.  And don’t worry about asking, “Where are they?”  They are everywhere, on our right hand and on our left, in our neighborhoods and in the workplace, in every community and county and nation of this world.  Take your team and wagon; load it with your love, your testimony, and a spiritual sack of flour; then drive in any direction.  The Lord will lead you to those in need if you will but embrace the gospel of Jesus Christ that has been taught in this conference.  Open your heart and hand to those trapped in the twenty-first century’s equivalent of Martin’s Cove and Devil’s Gate.  In doing so we honor the Master’s repeated plea on behalf of lost sheep and lost coins and lost souls.”

Let us reach out to others and accept the love and the help that others want to share with us.

The Touch of the Master’s Hand

 

Feelings

Many a person feels or has felt battered and scarred in his life.  Life deals us each blows that we may not be ready to take.  Some of us fall and feel like there is no way back to what once was.  Perhaps we even feel like we are of no worth like the old violin.  We feel like we have no purpose… why are we even alive?  We ask ourselves.  Why am I here?  What does it matter?  Nobody cares…

What are you selling yourself for?

Actions

So, we start to act the way that we feel.   We start acting like we do not care.  We start acting like nobody cares about us.  We plod about our days doing seemingly meaningless things.  We turn to anything that might make us feel better and are easily swept away by the words of the crowd.  We are so close to be going, going, and gone.

What Stops Us

So, what stops us?  What prevents us from being gone?  As it says in the video, it is the touch of the Master’s hand.  He brings us to a remembrance of our great worth as sons and daughters of God.  He helps us to see past our imperfections and into our divine worth.  He loves us so much that he looks past our faults and embraces us.  He leads us to a better life.  He brings out the divine nature and individual worth that is in each of us.  He makes us want to better.  He helps us to realize that we do have worth and that we are worth so much more than we have been telling ourselves.  His love for us is perfect and infinite.

 

What we can do

Perhaps we can help the Master in sharing His love with others.  We can be the Master’s hands as we reach out to love and serve others without judgment.  As we see each person as God’s sees them, as they truly are, we will be able to accomplish this.  In Doctrine and Covenants 18:10 it says:

“For the worth of souls is great in the sight of God.”

We can be the Master’s hands in people’s lives.  Let us help others feel and know of their great worth and their true identity as children of God.

The gift of our bodies

Life can lead to happiness

We are not our own

I was recently reminded of the scripture in 1 Corinthians 6: 19-20 which states:

“What? know ye not that your body is the temple of the Holy Ghost which is in you, which ye have of God, and ye are not your own?

For ye are bought with a price: therefore glorify God in your body, and in your spirit, which are God’s.”

We must remember that we are not our own.  Our bodies are not ours to do whatever we want with.  We were bought with a price as the scripture says.

I believe that many of us take this for granted or forget about it altogether.  We think that we have a right to do whatever we want with our bodies and our lives.  And yes, I agree, that we have each been given our personal agency, but we must remember how we were given that precious gift.

Because of Christ, we have been given so many wonderful and marvelous gifts, especially that of our body.  Is it our right to take away our own lives if we wish? What gives us this right?  Is it our right to destroy our body with bad habits like cutting, drinking, over-eating, under-eating, etc if we want to?  What gives us this right?

Our bodies are gifts from our Heavenly Father.  He sent His Son so that we might be given our bodies and our lives to show our faithfulness to Him and return to live with Him again.

What can you do today to treat your body more as a gift from God and to treat yourself more as a son or daughter of God?  I know He loves you and that as you strive to appreciate and show your love to Him back, you will be happier and have a more purpose-filled life.

There is a way back.  You are not a terrible person.  You are a son or daughter of God.  Even if you have made mistakes and have room in which to improve.  You are loved, and He will help you back.  Just lean on Him.

To Live is Christ

The sun in my life was being covered up and I wanted to die...

Wanting to choose death

Many of you know that during the fall of 2010, I struggled greatly with severe depression.  It got to the point that I did not want to live anymore.  I wanted to kill myself.  It seemed like the only thing that would just end my pain, hurt, sorrow, and misery.  I wanted to be done.

Yesterday, at church, the Sunday school lesson was on the resurrection of Jesus Christ.  In previous weeks we talked about the Savior’s suffering in the Garden of Gethsemane and on the cross.  This week we discussed His resurrection.  We talked about how His atonement frees us from spiritual death, while His resurrection frees us from physical death.  We can live again!  What a marvelous message.

The class was asked to think about what the resurrection means to them.  I was brought back to the memory of last fall when all I wanted to do was kill myself and be done with everything.  I shared with the class what I want to share with you.  To live is Christ.

Being stopped

One of the things that stopped me from killing myself during all of those extremely dismal and desperate times was the knowledge that I have that there is life after death.  The knowledge, that I would not be done, kept me from killing myself many times.

I learned in full force that Jesus Christ does live.  He died and suffered for all of our pains and heartaches and sufferings and sins, and He lives so that we too can live again!  He endured all that the Father had for Him to do.  He lived through it.  And when that final hour came, He was crucified on the cross to atone for our sins.

Love

Romans 8: 35, 37-39 in the New Testament states:

“Who shall separate us from the love of Christ?  shall tribulation, or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or peril, or sword?

Nay, in all these things we are more than conquerors through Him that loved us.

For I am persuaded, that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor principalities, nor powers, nor present, nor things to come.

Nor height, nor depth, nor any other creature, shall be able to separate us from the love of God which is in Christ Jesus our Lord.”

Can you just feel how much He loves you?  I hope that you can, because He loves you infinitely.  He has helped me repeatedly in my life.  He has helped me to choose life, both physically and spiritually.

I am forever grateful for and indebted to my Savior.  I know that He loves me and that His hand is in my life.  You are a child of God.  Your Brother, even Jesus Christ, sacrificed so much so that your life could be better.  Please turn to Him.  He will bring you joy, as He has brought me joy, comfort, and peace.

I love my Savior and know without a doubt, now, that to live is indeed Christ.

The Point of Numbness

Is this ever you?

How are you doing?

How many times a day are we asked this simple yet insightful question?  Perhaps if people really cared how we are doing they would ask us questions specific to our circumstances, or look us in the eyes and speak to us heart to heart.  How are you doing?

At what point do you cross the line of doing good or fine to doing not so good or bad?  How do you know how you feel?  Do you ever feel as if you have lost your ability to tell?

Past Feeling

I have gotten to that point before.  It is especially then that I disliked being asked that question of how I was doing over and over again.  That was the point when I honestly couldn’t really tell how I was doing myself.  All I knew was that I cried every day and had no motivation to do anything.

It got to the point where I could hardly feel anything.  What people said to me didn’t completely register.  My senses were not immediate at all.  This is one of the reasons that I started cutting.  I just wanted so badly to feel.  I now recognize this as an unhealthy solution to my problem, but at the time it was what my brain decided to do and what I had.

In a way it was a release for me.  All of the feelings and emotions that I had inside of me that I couldn’t sort out came out in blood.  In the long run, this actually built up to even more unnamed feelings.

There are dangers in becoming past feeling.  These are described in the Book of Mormon in 1 Nephi chapter 17, verse 45.  It reads:

“Ye are swift to do iniquity but slow to remember the Lord your God.  Ye have seen an angel, and he spake unto you; yea, ye have heard his voice from time to time; and he hath spoken unto you in a still small voice, but ye were past feeling, that ye could not feel his words; wherefore, he has spoken unto you like unto the voice of thunder, which did cause the earth to shake as if it were to divide asunder. . . O, then, why is it that ye can be so hard in your hearts?”

Do we allow ourselves to feel what the Savior and others would have us feel?  Are our hearts open to the Lord’s divine love and the love of others?  Are our hearts open to love others?

How we gain back feeling.

So, if we have gotten to the point that we do not feel so much, how do we gain that back?  How do we begin to feel again?

  1. Doing the Little Things:  By doing little everyday things that are good for us such as praying for help, service to others, and getting out of bed we allow ourselves to slowly, but meaningfully gain back feeling.  We are not waiting for lightning to strike us to make us feel better or be able to feel again.
  2. Awake, Awake:  By awaking ourselves we are able to feel again.  This can be as simple as getting up and taking a cold shower to shock yourself into feeling again.  This can also happen by repenting of sins, so that you do not have so much baggage covering you from being able to feel.  Each sin could be like and added blanket, some thicker than others.  As you take them off, you become better able to feel.
  3. Turn to Christ:  Asking for help when you need it is important.  Heavenly Father knows what we need.  He sent his son to experience all that we each experience.  Christ can and does help.  Through the atonement, we become clean and are truly able to feel again.
So, How are you doing?
How do you feel?  Do you ever feel like you just need a hug or a shoulder to cry on or just some other act of sincere love?  Do you feel loved?  Our Father in Heaven loves each of us perfectly.  He truly wants what is best for us.  Let us lean on Him.
Heavenly Father knows you perfectly.  He knows your strengths, weaknesses, challenges, hard times, and good times.  He knows you.  And He loves you.  How do you feel of His love?  Do you allow yourself to feel of His love?  How do you share His love with others?

Who am I anyway?

Who am I? A precious daughter of God.

Do we actually believe what we have been taught?

I have been taught all of my life that I am a child of God.  In fact, ever since I was three or four, I have implemented that knowledge into song by singing “I am a Child of God.”  I would sing it at church constantly and all throughout my childhood at home and wherever I felt to sing it.  I knew that I had a Father in Heaven who loved me.

There come times in life when we are extremely grateful for the things that we have been taught at a young age.  For me, this knowledge of who I really was helped me, but I didn’t always outwardly believe it.  Who are you?  You are a precious child of our Father in Heaven.  He loves you.

Deep down, I think I always knew that I was a daughter of God, but I did not always think that in my head through my depression.  In fact, this is what I said in one of my journal entries:

“I feel worthless… I feel worthless a lot of the time… A lot of times I honestly wish I could just die… I don’t really know who I am anyway so why not?  I don’t know who I am or where I belong anymore… and I really don’t know what I am like … because I have never gone through depression before… I know I am not going to be exactly the same as I was before this hit… but I don’t know what “recovered”  looks like for me…. And that kinda bugs me… I try to rely on the Savior and it is when I do that I can overcome a lot of the addictions and temptations I have to self harm…. I just want to be happy again… I want to feel like I have a purpose for living…”

Being taught that I am a daughter of God helped me to move forward and onward in my life.  It helped me to understand more fully how dearly I was loved.

Purpose in Life

During my depression, I felt as if I did not have a purpose in life.  I was taught in church what the previous video showed about life.  Basically, that the purpose in life was to have joy, to make decisions so that we could have joy.  The purpose is to use our agency to either choose happiness or misery, life or death.  Heavenly Father wants us to be happy.

During my recovery from depression, I would often wonder why Heavenly Father let me live.  Why was I even still here?  What was my purpose for still being here?  What did He want me to do?

It was during this time of my life, questioning my purpose, that I was given an answer.  The answer came at a school devotional, singing the closing hymn.  The hymn was “I Know that My Redeemer Lives.”  While singing I came to the realization that as I live to do the things that my Savior lived to do, I will indeed be living my purpose in life.

The lyrics of “I Know that My Redeemer Lives” are below:

1. I know that my Redeemer lives.
What comfort this sweet sentence gives!
He lives, He lives, who once was dead.
He lives, my ever-living Head.
He lives to bless me with His love.
He lives to plead for me above.
He lives my hungry soul to feed.
He lives to bless in time of need.
2. He lives to grant me rich supply.
He lives to guide me with his eye.
He lives to comfort me when faint.
He lives to hear my soul’s complaint.
He lives to silence all my fears.
He lives to wipe away my tears.
He lives to calm my troubled heart.
He lives all blessings to impart.
3. He lives, my kind, wise heav’nly Friend.
He lives and loves me to the end.
He lives, and while He lives I’ll sing.
He lives, my Prophet, Priest, and King.
He lives and grants me daily breath.
He lives, and I shall conquer death.
He lives my mansion to prepare.
He lives to bring me safely there.
4. He lives! All glory to His name!
He lives, my Savior, still the same.
Oh, sweet the joy this sentence gives:
“I know that my Redeemer lives.”
He lives! All glory to His name!
He lives, my Savior, still the same.
Oh, sweet the joy this sentence gives:
“I know that my Redeemer lives!
I know that my Redeemer lives!”
I asked myself as I sat there singing with tears running down my face, “Do I live to bless others with His love?  Do I live to plead for others above?  Do I live to feed others’ hungry souls and to bless them in times of their need?  Do I live to grant rich supply to others?  To guide and comfort others?  To listen to others and silence their fears?  Do I live to wipe away tears and calm troubled hearts? Do I live to help bring others safely home to heaven by inviting others to come unto Christ?
Christ is truly our divine example.  I know that as we come unto Him and strive to live as He lived and lives, we will be fulfilling our purpose here on Earth.  Life does not end with the grave.  I know that I am a precious daughter of God, who loves me.
Joseph B. Wirthlin once said:
“We see ourselves in terms of yesterday and today.  Our Heavenly Father sees us in terms of forever.”
What helps you to see yourself as Heavenly Father or God sees you?  What helps you to feel like you have a purpose here on Earth?  Who do you represent yourself to be?  Who do you treat others as?