Back To Life
“Sometimes, losing control of the big things in our life shows us the importance of all the small things.”
Journal Entry: July 2004
I am so sorry, but you were wrong about me. I’m not a miracle, strong, or a fighter destined for great things. It has been almost a year since that fateful day and almost 6 months since I left the hospital. In all honesty, I’m tired of waiting to get better, whatever better means. The accident has taken almost my entire gut, but unfortunately left my heart. So long it has been breaking. Cracks made from losing the life I once knew. Pieces taken from people I can no longer help. Beating closer and closer to silence as I let go of the hope I once had. This mountain is no longer worth climbing and I am so tired.
So many say that this choice is one of selfishness and lack of strength. Well, they are right. It is, but I hope the people I hold close know that it is a choice made up of many more emotions.
In the car that fateful day, I asked God to save me because I wasn’t ready to say goodbye and I didn’t want you to have to either. I thought that dealing with me dying that way was unfair. Losing any one of you in that manner would have put my life in a tailspin, but now I see that I was wrong. Life will be easier for all of you, I promise. My life in the past year has done nothing more than cause financial hardship, pain, and many more tears than if my life would have ended that day in the car. I simply can’t keep being the drain on my friend’s and family’s life anymore. In the end, my spirit died in that car and what’s left is not worth saving.
I believe in an afterlife. I believe that beyond this lifetime therein lies paradise and a home I seem to be missing more and more. My hope is that God will forgive me and Grandma is waiting with open arms.
Mom and Dad, take care of each other and know that you are the best parents I could ever wished for.
Lauren, my happy thought, I’m always with you. I’m sorry I’m not the strong big sister you thought I was. Please don’t be scared, you are tougher than you think.
I love you so much, please find it in your hearts to forgive me.
Love Always Always, Carly
I put my pen down, and wiped my eyes. Staring at the letter I was hoping that the smudges from my tears wouldn’t make it hard to read. I got up from being seated on my bed and went over to lock my bedroom door. Bending over my backpack filled with many different drugs, I grabbed 10 syringes and 10 vials of Valium. Slowly I began filling them as I sat on my bed, hoping that 10 would be enough to slow down my heartbeat and take the pain away forever.
Bowing my head I quietly said the prayer my family and I have said every night since I was little:
Now I lay me down to sleep
I pray the Lord my soul to keep
If I should die before I wake
I pray the Lord my soul to take
I took a deep breath as my sobs got harder and harder to control. Lifting the first syringe, I took off the plastic cap and inserted it into a tube protruding from my chest. Looking up, I wished that somehow my life had turned out differently. As I put my thumb on the bottom of the syringe there was a knock at the door. I nearly jumped out of my skin and had to take several deep breaths to calm myself down. I cleared my throat and said, “Yes?” as calmly as I could. It was my roommate.
“Hey Carly? I didn’t know if you were taking a nap or not, but I wanted to let you know that my Boyfriend has just finished grilling the best cheeseburger I have ever had! You gotta come try this!”
“Um, okay, maybe in a bit.”
“Okay, see you downstairs!”
I took a deep sigh and tried to stop shaking. Looking down at the needles I had the oddest thought, I don’t think I’ve had a cheeseburger that I would label as the ‘best I’ve ever had’. Five-seconds ago I was planning to take my life and end all the sadness, suffering, hopelessness I have been feeling for the past year, but now…. now I wondered what the “best cheeseburger I’ve ever had” tasted like? I looked down at my letter and had a thought that originated by some small voice deep down inside of me. Curiosity inspires hope, and hope gives a reason to live. I started thinking that maybe I really wasn’t done yet, maybe there is more “best of’s” I had to find.
A long-lost smile crossed my face as I stood up and grabbed the syringes and the letter and put them back in my backpack. As I unlocked the door, making my way downstairs, I thought, odd that something so small, so simple, could change our paths so quickly.
I believe that God and my grandmother were there with my roommate, and in the absence of a knock at my bedroom door this story would’ve had a very different ending. I’m not sure if my roommate ever knew what she did for me that day, but maybe it’s just as well. I had hit bottom and needed a knock to bring me back to life.
I walked into the kitchen and tried to hide my tear-stained cheeks as the deep-seeded darkness finally left me. I looked over at the table as my roommate lifted the cheeseburger and said to me, “You want one?” I smiled, silently thanked her, and replied, “Yeah, I want to know what the best cheeseburger you’ve ever had tastes like!”
Carly Speelman © 2013
Edited by: Lauren Speelman