Suicide and Dying With No Regrets.

I’m going to do the unthinkable and talk about suicide today. Yes, that dark evasive thing called death that no one wants to talk about, much less to acknowledge or admit to, much LESS around the holidays. Yes I know this is a “happy” blog, and yes I know this is not a feel good subject. But the truth is, this is part of my story and it’s part of so many other precious souls that I know, I think it’s time we talk about it.

Like this guy did.

I think he’s pretty friggin’ brave. What strikes me about this story is what I will call suicide regret, and I believe everyone who’s ever attempted to end their life, successfully or not, has felt it to some degree.

I know I did.

When I first stood there outside my car and looked down over the crevices of that Tennessee mountain, I felt only fear and despair. I knew something had to change and I thought the only way it would is if I would take myself out of it. I was sure that the only chance my husband and baby had at a better life was if I got into my car and gunned it over the edge.

Nothing could convince me otherwise. I was so mad that I had believed the lies. Mad that I had walked into yet another situation/relationship that had been so hard and so hurtful, and my mind was made up.

It was eerily quiet as I stood there, thinking long and deep into the abyss that threatened to squelch my life, to still my beating heart, once and for all. The phone rang. I let it go. “I can’t.” I thought. If I answer it, he will convince me not to do it.

It was my husband. I was too angry, too afraid to talk and so I just stood there, numb and yet knowing what I had to do. It was the only way out.

The phone rang again. And again…and again. It was destroying the quiet, disrupting my plan and forcing me to start thinking…rationally, perhaps? “What if? What if I picked up that phone and everything WOULD change? What if this was the one time that things would be different? But I would never know if I was lying flat at the bottom of that hill in a pile of steel and metal…”

I got into the car and revved up the motor. I fiddled with the radio. I looked over again at the sides of that steep hillside, and wondered how fast I would need to go to make sure I did not survive. If I was going to do it, I was going to do it right. My hands shook. My whole body shook. I HAD to do it.

But, then…”what if? What if I regret it the second I do it? My daughter would never know..”

Ah, my daughter!

And that’s when the text message came. “Your daughter needs you. Please come home.”

Suddenly out of nowhere, I snapped out of my rage and picked up the phone. What was I doing? My daughter needs me!

I burst into tears when I heard my husband’s voice. It felt both terrifying and amazing to hear it. I was relieved in the most unexpected way. Thing is, I knew I would have regretted it as soon as my car would have left the road. I knew I would have thought about my baby girl and I would have had the same thought that this man did…

“the millisecond my hands left the rail, it was an instant regret.”

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I know now that this is true. There is nothing pretty about that moment. There is nothing heroic about that millisecond where your brain has overruled your heart, where the lies have overwhelmed the truth and convinced you to take that leap.

It’s only instant regret.

I know because that’s what I felt in that moment and my hands hadn’t even left the steering wheel yet. I’m so thankful for that. I’m so grateful that I felt that tinge BEFORE it was too late.

I’m so glad I decided not to die that day. Because as God and destiny would have it, I went on to live the best and happiest life I’ve ever lived, after that. Today I live a full life, one that has sadness and joy and misery and yes,  ‘happy little surprises.’ But through it all, I’ve made it my mission to live AND die, with no regrets.

The truth is I would rather go unexpectedly and completely out of control, with fullness of heart and life, than to go being in control with even one regret, if that was the only regret I ever had, and if that was the ONE that took my life.

Truth is, I don’t want my daughter (or my son) to ever wonder if I “wanted to” die or not. I want my children to know that no matter how hard it ever was, I lived and loved life to the fullest, and that I died with NO REGRETS.

Yes, this is a heavy subject to broach especially around the holidays, but honestly I’m so tired of hearing of another beautiful soul making that leap, and wondering if they really wanted to die. Wondering if they knew how much we wanted, needed them here. And how amazing their life might have been, had their hands not left the rail.

If that is you and you are on the brink of a hopeless end, please think about this. Consider the instant regret and how you can’t undo that. Most people don’t get another chance to take that decision back like I did. Most people that take that leap don’t ever come back. Please don’t be one of them.

Instead, do something brave you won’t regret, and ask for help. There are plenty of people and organizations and healing therapies that can and will work. There really IS hope.

I am not a professional in any one of those things, but if you need a listening ear, prayer or perhaps a little encouragement, please send an email to: happylittlesurprises@gmail.com or send a message via www.facebook/happylittlesurprises.com. I am always happy to hear your story and to offer you my own.

Be brave and reach out today! You are worth it. You are loved. You are beautiful. You are valued and needed.

No regrets.

The end.

 

Resources:

Suicide Prevention Hotline: 1-800-273-TALK (8255)

Northern Colorado: http://allianceforsuicideprevention.org/about-suicide/where-to-get-help/

General:

http://lostallhope.com/help-me

http://www.samaritans.org/how-we-can-help-you/what-speak-us-about/i-want-kill-myself

Depression:

http://www.adaa.org/finding-help

http://www.cnn.com/2010/HEALTH/06/11/supplements.for.depression/

http://info.achs.edu/blog/depression-and-anxiety-can-essential-oils-help

Treatment Centers:

http://www.therefuge-ahealingplace.com/depression-treatment/

https://www.aplaceofhope.com/

http://www.sierratucson.com/depression/

 

 

When a Healer Dies.

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I was as shocked and stunned as the rest of the world, at the news of Jess Ainscough’s passing last week.

Although I did not know her personally, the news of her death hit me like a ton of bricks in my chest. She was only 30, after all!

I have been following Jess’s blog and videos, since she first started doing them eight years ago, and I’ve always felt a certain kinship with her, because of her insatiable passion to heal cancer, in herself and others, no matter what the cost. Whenever I watched her videos, I would instantly feel lifted and inspired to keep living, loving, teaching, and healing, in my own journey to health.

Plus, she did coffee enemas five times a day! That made her an instant hero, in my eyes. She was willing to do something radical that most people are not willing to do, because she was determined to heal, without drugs and surgery.

And can you blame her?? At the time of her diagnosis, her only option from the doctors had been to amputate her entire arm, all the way up to her shoulder!

Now, I don’t know about you but that would definitely be enough to make me seek out some other options, and that’s what Jess did. She found a clinic in Mexico, that has been treating cancer patients (and may I say, quite successfully?!) with enemas, raw food, and vegetable juices for many years.

So she committed to the program. And knowing what I know, I would have done the same.

Now, here’s the tricky part:

She died! All the carrot juice and coffee enemas could not keep her alive and she, like my dad, eventually lost her battle. In spite of her determination and staggering efforts, she died anyway.

Or at least that’s what the critics say.

The ones who, in recent years, have shamed and stomped on her like an angry bull, crushing anything that gets in its way. The ones who blamed her for her own Mother’s death, when she had decided to follow the same protocol as Jess. I’ve visited her blog and read the comments. I’ve seen the hate mail from other bloggers. And let me warn you, it’s not pretty.

One blogger even went so far as to say that Jess had been “hiding her arm” from the public, because it was obviously rotting and disintegrating from the cancer. She said that it was obvious that Jess was going to die.

And you know what? She did. Eight years after she was diagnosed with epithelioid sarcoma, Jess Ainscough died! The critics were right. Natural medicine is useless, and the Gerson therapy doesn’t work.

Or are they?

Perhaps we need a little perspective.

The fact is, every year, hundreds of thousands of Americans die while undergoing chemo and radiation. Hundreds more die while in surgery, or in the weeks thereafter. This is nothing new!

People of all kinds of cancer have died while doing all kinds of treatment.

Why then is it such a problem when someone chooses a less harmful, invasive path to their healing, or what they believe to be a more peaceful, more capable way to live and die with cancer?

Why then are we so hostile toward a young girl for simply choosing a more natural way, and writing about how good she felt, by making that decision?

I say, let her! Let her live and die in the way that she knew best, and honor the life she had! And let us honor the years and the peace and the memories she may have gained, by choosing what felt right to her!

I believe Jess Ainscough led a beautiful and painful life, and one that I will not soon forget. Yes, she had cancer, and yes, she WAS dying, but she was also living and thriving!

Yes, she was sick, but that didn’t stop her from reaching out to her readers with vulnerability, and responding to her critics with kindness.
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Cancer didn’t keep her from offering her gifts, even when it snuffed out her own Mother.

And that takes a special kind of humanity. A rare grace. And a courage that I can only dream of.

It takes courage to tell your story to anyone, much less to perfect strangers, knowing that you could be judged, or even attacked for your choices. It takes courage to let people see your pain, while still believing in yours and their healing.

And for that, she was, and will always be my hero. She will always be the woman that inspired me to follow my heart and not to stop until I had found my own healing. To keep sharing my gifts with the world, even when the world doesn’t appreciate or understand them.

And so, let the critics say what they want.

I say it takes an extreme amount of humility, grace, and courage to live the life that Jess lived. It takes an enormously gracious spirit to inspire hope in others, while you yourself are dying.

It takes a huge heart, that of a true healer, to heal the world of its harsh reasonings and rationalities by continuing to offer it kindness.

One that quite honestly, I don’t think I have, and I wonder if any of her opposers would have had.

Jason Wachob from MindBodyGreen, wrote these words about Jess, in a deeply moving blog post, on Friday.

“Sometimes terrible things happen to amazing people and there are no good answers. This is one of those times.”

I don’t know why we are so quick to judge a young girl who’s doing her best to thrive, while she’s dying. I don’t know why we care so much when someone we don’t even know, opts for coffee enemas, instead of having her arm cut off.

I just know that it takes purpose and gut-wrenching courage to do what Jess Ainscough did. And unfortunately, healers die, too.

May we honor them by asking our questions gently, living our lives fully, and always, ALWAYS following our passion and seeking our own healing, no matter what the outcome.

On Odorless Poop and Waking up From the Fog.

So you’ve been heavily sedated for over two weeks, inoculated by the deepest love and the strongest bond known to man.

And now, slowly but surely, you’re waking up.

Slowly but surely, you come out of that euphoria-induced trance of peach fuzz and heaven-scented baby scalp and the innocent little squeaks of a newborn. That intoxication of soft buttery skin and odorless poop and sleepy eyes trying to focus on yours.

Little by little, you come out of that elation which makes you joyfully oblivious to the world and the crud and the ugly, and keeps you in a constant state of happiness for days. That bliss which makes you unconscious to the night sweats and the sore nipples and the aching body, and convinces you that you are living in a sordid wonderland, instead.

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You wake up from the fog of people coming to help and to visit, and to hold your floppy little bundle. Friends giving gifts and bringing flowers and sending their congratulations.

You wake up from all that is beautiful and right with the world, to some that is not.

Slowly but surely, those innocent little squeaks are turning into full-blown crying fits and the odorless poop is beginning to smell like, well…poop. Slowly but surely those sleepy eyes and that floppy body are becoming yours and the euphoria is turning into dilerious exhaustion.

That’s the tricky part of this post-partum road. The part you had almost forgotten.

You were so enraptured in the sweetness and the wonder and the glory, you had almost forgotten that those mega doses of happy hormones eventually leave your body, and you come down from the high.

You wake up from the fog to a brand new, less than glamorous reality. One in which a little human has thoroughly and completely rearranged everything. Your schedule. Your time. The way you do things. How often you leave the house. And what you wear, when you do leave. (You find out that it’s NOT a good idea to wear a full-length maxi dress when you’re breastfeeding!) You know…things like that. They get rearranged.

You look down at an odd-shaped body and wonder how in the world you’re ever gonna fit into those skinny jeans you bought last year, just before you got pregnant. You wonder why you ever allowed this to happen and how single mothers do it, and if your life is ever going to be normal again.

You smile at the cute little demanding person you’ve brought into the world and question how you can possibly be everything that he needs. And then he smiles, innocent and peaceful and you have hope again. Hope for the world and for your future.

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He opens his sleepy eyes and for a moment you close yours. You close your eyes to the world and the crud and the bag of returns that never got taken back. It’s now past the thirty-day expiration. You squeeze them tight shut to a pile of baby clothes that never got sorted and the moldy bread in the pantry from three weeks ago.

You close your eyes to the rain and the mud and the un-beautiful.

He looks up at you ever so sweetly and you smile.

You smile through the tears and pray those hormones drop you gently and that you can stay in euphoria a little while longer.