This is a personal story. I publish it anonymously because it’s still too personal. But, in fact, it’s a very public story repeatedly told through the lives of families with a depressed child.
Today, our son is a healthy, extremely bright, hard-working adult in his mid-thirties. Eighteen years ago he was unconscious, living on a respirator with a lethal blood alcohol content of point 5. Mental “darkness” had made suicide his only relief.
Shortly afterward, he wrote a poem in an effort to understand his own feelings. The words, I’m told, flowed easily at the time, but their meaning took years for him to appreciate. I saved those words for myself, until now.
AXIS I've swung on my heart Since that one cold day, When I hanged a tired heart On a misty summer day. The sway - I feel it so My dreams, to it I swing, And from it away. Sometimes I have it; My life in my hands. A moment it is, Dreams, Goals, Plans. Though nothing is real, "It will be", I know it! Then the motion, the queasy feeling, Torn away, twisting, reeling. Hinged on the Now With nothing to grasp. A dream is nothing anyway, right? "Look at it!" You're stupid you know, "This rope has carried you Not to, but fro!" The fantasy, so far away, "Your life's a farce", I say. I'd hate to fall off. But feel dizzy forever? I'd rather jump from this heart on a rope than watch others cope. An eternity of this? Just a snatching at hope? "Ha! Let go of the rope! Let go of the rope." It feels better to fall, To fling off the edge, Than to cling to the line Swinging in dread. Yet by then, round I've come, And into my dreams I swing ... full bore. My hands on my life ... on my line, The vision envisioned. I grasp for something deficient, But mine. To survive I know That holding the rope isn't the key. The dreams at line's end I can take back with me. "Lift yourself into the Now. Pull your heart there too. Stand with the Day and your heart And your Dreams coming true."
Submitted by Anonymous – Lodi, CA