That night I had just finished a double shift, it was three in the morning. The voices had haunted me throughout the day and the medication itself was no longer working. I went to lay down that late Sunday morning and the moment I closed my eyes I was awoken by the sight of a dead body laying next to me in the most gruesome of form.

I got up and went to the computer to listen to some Gospel music and that only made things worst. I heard the voices through the electronic line amplified beyond my comprehension casting their accusations and guilt. Burdening my tired frame with shame and regret. They played their tricks and though I knew better fell into the trap of isolated fear.

I sooner realized that I wanted to give up and just go home to God. I reached for the bottle of Aspirin and strung out as many pills as I possibly could. The voices began taunting me with tempations and doubts that I wasn’t man enough to accomplish the deed. With tears streaming I began to lift my hand towards my mouth until a voice interrupted me claiming to be my angel and speaking words into my life that were beyond my given intellectual capacity. But when the voice left, the taunting returned and I lost connection with the hope that was inspired in me just a few moments ago. I took the pills. This was 2-3 years ago.

Now that I have a healthy state of mind and a consistent medication use that provides protection and safety against these voices and images, I still fall under the trap of suicidal thoughts. Whether it be worrying about the state of my relationship with my fiance, losing a job or beginning a new business the anxiety takes over and I become cornered in my thoughts to just end it all.

My doctor simply said, “Your condition is not unique. It’s like having arthritis, despite the amount of medications you take to sustain your health and strength the feeling of pain will still be there. The suicidal thoughts will always be there. It’s up to you to decide how you will manage them and fight to succeed in your life. Living and hoping for a better future.”

I fight because I have priorities. I fight because I’m in love and have gained mutual respect with the partner I’m with. I fight because I do not want to dissapoint my family or friends with the idealogy that I was too weak to go on and contest these struggles.

If I have any amount or discernable advice to give it is but a cliche of terms, “don’t give up”. Don’t surrender your life to regret or shame because who you were then is not who you are now and who you were then should not dictate the behaviors or feelings of who you are now. Don’t give into the enemy. He will attack you when the awareness of your potential being reached is present. Don’t give up.

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