I haven’t written this week, because the one thing on my mind, I wasn’t ready to write about.
It’s not because writing about it makes it “real”, it was already pretty real. I think it is more because as long as it stays in my mind, I can delay having to make tough decisions. Once I get it out in the open, it becomes obvious that I can’t just keep going like it didn’t happen – even though my daughter also tries to do that.
I am no stranger to suicidal thoughts and actions, but I hoped and prayed that my daughter would be. She was diagnosed with the same mental illness I have, Borderline Personality Disorder. She is in counseling and on medication, but the process takes time. No quick fixes here.
Anyways, this is how we spent our Saturday night a week ago.
When Crying Sounds Like Singing
My husband muted the TV and said, “What is that noise?”. I said, “It’s Bee singing”.
My daughter loves to sing. She has a microphone and amplifier in the room upstairs. We don’t heat and cool the upstairs as we are a small family, but she goes up there and uses one of the rooms like other kids would use a tree-house.
5 minutes later
“What is that?” Arthur mutes the TV again. “I think she is crying”, I say. “That’s what I was thinking”, Arthur again.
I walk to the door that leads to the stairs to go up. I yell, “What’s going on?”. “Nothing!”, Bee tells me, but I can tell by the thick, watery sound that she had been crying.
“Hold on, I am coming up.”
I walk into the room, and Bee is sitting half on and half off her bean bag chair that she has just received as an Easter present. She looks a mess, of course, she had been crying. She has her phone in her hand.
I walk in and sit on the bed and ask, “What happened?!”. Again, the “Nothing” comes from her red swollen face.
“No, Bee. Tell me what happened.” “Did someone say something?”
“No, I just can’t take it anymore!! I just saw something!! Someone took my sister, and she was calling for me, and I couldn’t help her!”
I turn into mother mode and start calming her down. “OK, come here. Get off the floor.”
“Oh, ok, you cut yourself.”
There are two long cuts on her wrist. “Where did you get a blade? I thought we locked everything up?”, I ask. Bee’s voice is monotone when she says, “I took apart a pencil sharpener.”
“That’s OK. Let’s go down and clean it.”
Bee gets up. She is still crying. “I couldn’t cut deep enough! I couldn’t cut deep enough!”
“I know, honey. It’s OK. Let’s go downstairs.”
In the bathroom, I see that her cuts where deeper than she had ever made them before. Thankfully, they weren’t deep enough for stitches.
Suicidal or Cutting
“Was this just cutting again, or were you trying to kill yourself?” Bee just sits there and shakes her head “Yes”.
” Alright. it’s going to be alright”, I was saying just as much to myself as I was to her.
“Let’s get you in the bath, and we will just go lie down. I will sleep with you tonight.” The entire process Bee completed in robot mode.
“Take off your clothes.”
“Step into the bath.”
“Here I can wash your hair.”
“Wash your body.”
“Pull the plug.”
Every step needs to be said, or she will just stand there…staring. Staring into an uncertain future? Staring into the black abyss of hopelessness? Staring into the memory of things seen that never really happened? I don’t know.
The Never-ending End
So, I did sleep with her – that night and the next. We got her into her psych nurse and counselor. We instituted the rule, again, that she can’t stay by herself.
Is this the end? I hope. Honestly, it is probably just the end of one chapter and the beginning of another. When you have Borderline Personality Disorder, there is never really an end. Just a life punctuated by fits and starts – dark and light – forward and backward.
The cycle of madness.