12 Years Free Milestone (My Suicide Attempt)
Today is the 17th anniversary of my first suicide attempt and 12th anniversary of my last suicide attempt where I almost lost my life and didn’t survive. 22 July 2003 & 2008, these are the two dates I’ll never ever forget for the rest of my life and I’ve also reached another milestone. In those twelve years, I have not attempted suicide which is the longest time for me…it hasn’t been easy getting to where I am now especially the last few years but so glad I haven’t gone down that dark path.
My last suicide attempt was a very traumatic experience and something you never expect to go through but battling a mental illness and all the struggles since you were born, that’s the reality of what I would call my “normal” life back then when I was at my lowest of the lowest dark point of my life. A lot of my readers who have been following me since the early days would already know this I have talk a lot on here from my past posts which you can read one of them by clicking here -> Suicide Attempt Survivor: A Decade Milestone.
I also forgot to mention six years ago (in 2014) on the same day, I posted The Dark Truth on my blog which was probably the hardest and emotional post as I reveal some of my struggles to my family and friends for the first time in a long time since Year 8. Few people knew my darkest secrets that I was hiding for many years and not many people knew about it mainly because they know me as RandomDavo, the one who loves to make people laugh and do random pranks since the old days in high school but they never expect me to have a mental illness.
Even in my childhood, I would always hide my depression and pretend to be someone who was always happy since it was easier to fool people but in reality, I was dying in the inside and wanted all the pain and suffering to stop.
Why do I feel like I had to hide my struggles? One of the reasons is coming from a Hong Kong Chinese background, there is a lot stigma and taboo of mental health. I was ashamed of having a mental illness and I’d bring shame to my family. This is something I just found out (during the lock down from COVID-19) the reason why I was doing that and why it is very hard for me to reach out for help when I was talking to my teachers and support teachers from TAFE. I mean I knew what I was doing in hiding but I just didn’t knew the whole truth.
This time of the year I always struggle especially today. There are times where I get flashbacks of what happened twelve years ago, I remember everything from taking my medication and blacking out, being in and out of consciousness when the paramedics escorting me to the ambulance and rushing me to hospital. Even waking up in hospital being groggy and confused where I was and I remember I just took my oxygen mask and this nurse was going towards me saying not to take it off and all the sudden, I blacked out again from the lethal amount of medication I took. It’s pretty scary and I never been that scared in my entire life.
Still, I get these dark thoughts like life will be better off without me because I’m a burden to everyone or my suicide attempt should have work. A lot of these thoughts has come from when I was a very young kid probably when I was like 7 years old (because of the trauma from the bullying) or some from after I attempted suicide. Half of me believes these thoughts but the other half, doesn’t believe that.
Talking through with my support network the last few weeks has been helping me a lot. Apparently my past suicide attempts are like stories being retold again. As well, it’s in the past, something you can’t change and you can’t keep living in the past but you can move on from it and look forward to the present and the future.
Although what happened to me in my last suicide attempt was terrible and no one should have to face that, I’m just grateful to have a second chance in life. Even the doctor from ICU told me I was lucky to be alive because if my dad and my sister didn’t find me in time, I would have been dead and it feels surreal hearing me saying that out loud as you never expect being so close to death.
I guess after going through countless and countless of therapy especially with the DBT after I attempted suicide, it’s pretty much changed my life for the best. One thing I have learned that I’m now in a different place compare to where I was seventeen years ago and twelve years ago as I was still very young and being a teenager is probably one of the hardest thing to go through. It’s incredible that I was able to survived those dark periods back then and I’m so glad not in that dark place anymore.
The last few weeks, I have been keeping myself very busy and been giving a lot to others. What do I mean by giving? Well, I’ve been baking cakes for a lot of my family and friends, teaching my two bros how to cook, doing volunteer work at Boys Brigade, helping people and I’ve been serenading to people at the day program by playing music on my guitar and ukulele. The feedback I’ve been getting by doing those things have been overwhelming as they are very grateful for me for doing something good for them and this makes me really happy to see that they are happy. I wouldn’t be able to do all these things twelve years ago and that’s why my support network always reminds me I’m now in a different place.
With all the experiences I have went through and surviving them all, that’s why I am sharing my experiences through my blog with people who could be in a similar situation to where I was. I want to show people I am living proof that you can survive life and it’s not as bad as it seems even though it can feel like it’s the worst possible feeling ever. Also, they are not alone going through as I’ve felt really alone when I was on my own but finding out there were others who are going through the same thing as them made me felt better that I wasn’t the only one.
Living with a mental illness is one of the hardest thing to go through and it can be really hard to understand when you don’t have it yourself or have not experience it before. I want to show people the reality of it because it’s something you can’t snap out of it as it doesn’t work that way. That’s why I want to raise awareness of mental health and change the stigma/taboo of it.
Today, even though it was hard, I find I was able to get through today. I pretty much slept in this morning as I had a late night last night and I have been very busy everyday without taking a break. That’s the life of a baker and a student studying Commercial Cookery. I trained with my personal trainer in the arvo which is always good as exercise is great for mental health. Though, we only did an easy session today as my neck is a bit stiff from all the stress and sleeping awkwardly last night but it was good to talk through things with my PT as he’s been a great support.
I also played on my ukulele as I am a musician and I’m currently learning how to play the fingerstyle “A Whole New World” from one of my favourite childhood movies, Disney’s Aladdin. I don’t know how many times I’ve watch Aladdin but I remember whenever I was sick as a child, this was the movie I always watch when I was sick. Not really sure why it was my go to movie but anyway. After learning the song for two days, I’m now able to play the full song but still need more practicing as there are some parts I’m still having trouble with.
My parents took me out for dinner tonight at a new local Chinese restaurant that just opened a few weeks ago just to distract myself and to celebrate my life. It’s your typical Chinese meal as we had soup, crab with noodles, steamed fish and sweet & sour spare ribs. For dessert, we had egg tarts which I never had for dessert after dinner as usually you have it for Yum Cha but the food was yummy and superb! Also, the service from the restaurant was top quality too and because we met one of the owners (I think) as he invited my dad and I for Yum Cha one day after my dad was showing me the new restaurant. Definitely gonna come here again!
I have survived yet another year and I have to admit, it wasn’t as bad as I thought it would be. I think the anticipation and the build up to the date always make it worse for whatever reason I don’t know and because I’ve been really busy which is a bit unusual for, I haven’t had the time to think about today during that time.
Finally, I still remember before I was going to publish The Dark Truth, I was pretty terrified of the reactions I would get from people because you don’t know what reactions you will get from people whether it will be good or bad but thankfully, it was all good. The amount of support and the positive response I have been getting from everyone whenever I share my darkest stories with my mental illness have been really amazing and I’m just thankful to have their support.
Although I have to admit, over the years there have been a few minority of people (who I used to be friends) judging me because of the content I post on my blog. It sucks because you can’t make everyone happy and was I sad at first? Yes I was, I hate losing friends but the thing I learn about life is that people comes and go and that’s the reality sadly.
To those who have been supporting me, thank you guys for your support especially to those who have stand by me from the very beginning. Never in my life thought I’d reach here after what I’ve been through and I think without your support, I don’t think I would get to where I am now. I mean I know I did a lot of the hard work but having moral support from you guys makes me appreciate life a little bit more so thank you again and I’m glad to say that I’m still alive.
Be random but stay safe!