Bloodshot eyes from tear glands working overtime.
I would have you believe it’s because I’m always high.
But the truth is bloodshot eyes.

I’m always high because I’m always low.
I’ve hit rock bottom and now the voices are in full control.
It’s their way or the highway.
They’ve told me stuff, stuff I’ve heard once or twice. Maybe thrice or five times.
~Break a leg. Literally.
~Go to hell. Literally.
~Fall on your sword. Literally.
~Knock them dead. Literally.
You cannot come and kill yourself.
Actually you can, they say.
And so their way or the highway,

I’m choosing their way.
It’s been a long journey.
Maybe the day I lay down on the road to peacefully have a speeding vehicle run me over was the first time.
Maybe it wasn’t because I was no longer the last born and so almost zero attention.
Maybe it was a sign.
Maybe the time I placed my hands on the hot plate of the electric stove, I actually knew what I was doing. Burn those hands.

They’d been speaking all along. I just hadn’t understood how well I had been listening.
These days they say a couple of things I’ve also heard before:
~You’re not good enough.
~You’re failing in life.
~You’re not doing as well as your classmates from high school.
~You’re fat.
Ringing in my head non-stop, you’d think it was my mantra.

I’ve thought it through.
I’m scared of heights so I’m not jumping from 8 floors.
If I jump in front of a bus, somebody will probably save me.
I can’t get prescriptions so pills won’t cut it.
I’ll lock myself up and slit my wrists.
The voices agree. Oh wait, it was their idea.
They spur me on.
They’ve enlisted Charon, Hades’ ferryman.
I check my pocket, dammit I need a coin to pay for safe passage.
I remember my money box, so many coins.
“There’s nothing to live for!” – my suicide note I place on top of my money box.
“This is it.”

I take the knife and sit on the floor.
I hear footsteps approach.
Have to do it quickly.
The door opens and my brother barges in.
Julius! You don’t have to do this.
I do! I do!
There’s no point. This family would be better with me dead. My friends would be happier.
I will be at peace.
He says no. We can get through this bro. I promise you.
A part of me wants to believe. So I lower my guard and he grabs the knife, catches me unawares.
He hugs me.
It’s going to be alright he says.

Hello, my name is Julius and I suffer from depression and have suicidal ideation.
Today is October 10.
Sixth month in therapy.
I am doing better now.
I have people to talk to.
I take days off when I need to.
It’s okay to ask for help.
I cry sometimes and I know
I matter
I am not alone and
I am enough.

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