A decision to remove oneself from life’s domain does not happen over night. In fact, its a gradual process. Some could even declare that the process of distancing oneself from living, is the actual death, itself. How does one even contemplate such a painful act? Sometimes, the victims who are blamed. They are seen as selfish, uncaring, and not thinking about those who they will leave, or left behind. That’s a perception from individuals, who are ignorant to the process of suicide. The slow, mental destruction, before a person even considers suicide, is the initial danger, itself. Once that has gone downhill, its hard to go in the inverse.
The very foundation of suicide is depression-an emotional and mental imbalance. During those tortuous years of battling depression in undergrad, and years prior, those definitions were patterns of repetition. Psychiatrists and psychologists informed me about this imbalance. The problem is that I had truly never received a solution. Medication, and counselors, who had never experienced this, were unable to heal the emotional pain I was suffering from. This is not to negate the success stories of those lucky enough to heal using medication. Yet, for my depression experiences, medication just didn’t work.
Moreso than the negative side effects of medication, it was the feeling of loneliness, (and being misunderstood) which was far worse. The pain of feeling that things were not going to get better. Constant trials and errors in finding the proper way to heal. People not understanding why you just can’t “get it together.” Without vision, or seeing improvement in your health, brings further agony to discussions on depression and suicide. Ostracized, while not receiving the compassion and support from other people, is what allows depression to linger. . .eventually propelling to the next stage. The phrase a living hell did not suffice for the level of pain and agony I was experiencing. Traveling and studying abroad in different nations, during the course of my undergraduate experience did not bring transformation out of this toxic phase. It was something, that followed, no matter where I ran to.
Fortunately, those periods are no more. Reflecting on that era, there are many observations and questions which came to mind. The first one?
Well, for starters, it was my discovery and immersion with holistic remedies, meditation groups, and connection with other healthy, feminine support and Spiritual groups, which helped me discover my center. . .returning to the state of balance! For me, it was too often that depression was only discussed in the context of medical terminology. Prior to that healing experience, I had never been exposed to, or thought about depression being anything, but a medical illness. The spiritual and physical health attributes did not seem to fit in. Proper eating, removal of toxic ingredients (i.e. white sugars) from my diet didn’t seem to fit into the general make-up of depression. If anything, there were times when I sensed that healing was out of my control. That prescription medicine was the only experience.
Well, it actually began, once I realized there were other factors, relating to my depressive state. One of them were the extreme expectations I was placing on my aspirations for success. For a long time, the basis of my self-esteem came through my intelligence-getting straight A’s, winning academic awards, and anything else that came with the academic world. Once depression came, and that fell apart, self-esteem worsened. Self-care and consistency with maintaining my appearance began to fall, as they say, by the waste side. And then, there was my social life. How much time and effort did I truly put into that. Not as much, as I could have. Then again, past reflections observed me in periods of isolation. Understanding other factors to my depression, which led to hospitalizations, became liberating. It meant that there were numerous options for me to be an active player in my own healing process-outside of prescribed medications.
Sometimes, we have to go through extremities in order to appreciate the beauties of reality. Being open to women, who had a greater, spiritual frequency was amazing! Not only was it nourishing, but it was their enlightenment and wisdom, which helped me to understand the reasons for my depression. I met these women in Cairo, Egypt, during the time when I was living on the island of Zamalek. Egyptian. British. American. Latina. Connected to a group of women, who specialized in meditation, and met regularly throughout the year, was an anticipation I had every month. Among them I felt normal. I felt alive. And, I felt the ciruclation of holistic energy rejuvenate my spirit and very being. The space of our monthly meetings were not only aesthetically pleasing (from an interior design perspective), but it was structured to attract that Universal energy into Earth’s domain.
Dance has truly saved me! Teaching dance classes in Cairo, Egypt was one of the most enriching, spiritually-invigorating, feminine experiences that I have ever had. Those times when it was just me in the dance studio, was a power so grand, that it became my healing essence. Not only did I feel healed, after practicing any dance sequence, but I observed its power to rejuvenate other women. Those women who entered into my classes; conveying to me how they too, felt cleansed-in mind, Spirit, and perception of self.
Through dance I was removing any negative energy and toxins that had been directed towards my skin; unfiltering its way into my aura and energy fields. Dance allowed me to re-claim my femininity. It directed me to higher planes of Being. Reaching towards those planes as forces of healing. Removing temporary fixes, and getting to the source of the problem. The emptiness-mental, physical, and emotional cleansing, which did not serve me. Dancing through all of it was my source of inspiration. Through the rhythm and patterns of movement, I experienced Universal energy and the epitome of. . .
And so, as we look back on World Suicide Prevention Day 2019, we question and examine how we are progressing in the conversation. Are more safe spaces being created to make discussions on depression, suicide and mental health, normal? Are the topics becoming less of a taboo within our inner circles? More importantly, have we created energy spheres, where people feel comfortable to speak to us, should they need help?
Have we become more creative in our efforts to end suicide and the mental health crisis? Or, are we solely relying on presciption drugs? Its time to step back and observe our methodologies.
If so, how do we improve upon these methods. If not, what are clinicians, school counselors, psychologists, psychiatrists, educators, principles, parents, social workers, and friends doing to ensure that exercises, activities, and so forth START. . .working? As we start thinking, let’s. . .continue to work! And let’s WORK IT. . .creatively!
For more information on World Suicide Prevention Day, you can go to the following link: https://www.iasp.info/wspd2019/