15.05.2008 -17 °C
Writing this last entry has been hard. It will be harder for you to read it, so I apologise.
I left home in a bad situation. Life really wasn't what I wanted it to be and I was in a downhill spiral, the 21st of January I hit a peak of hurting myself to a point where I didn't care anymore. I completely broke down and I knew it was bad. That night I thought of suicide, which was a big thing because before I had never ever even considered it. Death scares me, and I always thought that things would get better eventually so it wasn't worth it. That night I text a friend who I've relied on a lot before. We hadn't spoken much recently but they helped me. I was scared and alone that night and I shared the problem and it helped it go away, albeit just for that night. Those last weeks I was stressed and tired, not just exhausted by work but by life. Hating being alone, upset, hurt... not ever having a solution, just stuck in a dead end. The day before I left I looked on the back on the painkiller box to see how many it would take to kill me. I sat on the floor and cried, because I realised what I was doing, and it was so stupid. It was stupid because this was something I had thought I would never do, it was stupid because like some kind of zombie I was doing this without any control of it myself, and it was stupid because no-one even knew I was in this kind of state. At that point, my trip was a lifeline. Knowing myself, I probably wouldn't ever have taken those pills, but jesus, I scared myself.
My trip was something to look forward to. Researching and organising it kept me busy and provided a nice distraction. It was a finish line for me to drag myself to. I had a goal to reach. It was also a cure, if it wasn't going to fix me by the end then I was more broken than I realised.
The first few days in New York were hard, but I adjusted. The first 5 airports up until I landed at Auckland, I would get badly homesick and scared again, going into the unknown. No amount of planning could ever have prepared me for that. But I stuck it out, because I'm stubborn and I was determined to make my trip work. Sometimes I did get really lonely, and wished that I didn't have to do it alone and that someone was there to share the things I was seeing. But I didn't have any choice, if I wanted to do this trip, I had to do it alone. I'm massively, unashamedly proud of what I've done. I've come back from this trip having seen and experienced so many different things and learnt so much and that in turn has filled me with even more confidence in myself than before. I met a lot of people along the road, who all played a part in making my trip that little bit better, because when you're travelling on your own they're all pretty important. I also know now that I can do it, this was a challenge and I overcame it, just like I'm sure the next few years will throw more challenges my way and I will overcome them too.
Best of all though, is that I've stopped hurting from what happened with Stuart. I also realised a week into the Cook Islands, amid emails, that he is selfish, and I don't think I've deserved the lack of respect or care he's given in this last year since we've been apart. I used to hope that one day he would be mature enough to talk to me again, but now I don't care, I'm too angry. Before I also gave consideration to how he and others may view this, but frankly, I've been honest, which is more than he has been to me. I guess what goes around comes around.
Another plus is that I went to Raglan to see a good friend Nash, met Colin and had the whole Raglan experience. Like I've said before, life in Raglan was exactly how I've wanted it to be for years, and I think it was that which really fixed me. I was completely me there, no pretending to be happy, no glossing over the bad bits. It showed me life's good side again, something which seemed only in memories for so long.
Now that I've admitted all of this to you; family, friends, even strangers... I don't want you to treat me differently, whether it to think me weird, or to treat me like a china vase, that's not what I want. There's such a anti-social association with self harm and that's only because people don't understand it, which I guess does figure, but I hope that through reading this I've maybe shed just a little, tiny, glimmer of light on the subject. Don't be apprehensious (think I just made that word up) of me, or feel sorry, talk to me about it even... I just want you to try and understand. For me, self-harm was another way of forgetting the emotional pain for a little while. It was the extreme, the rest of the time I tried to forget through writing, talking and sharing my hurt. If anyone ever needs to talk, I will listen. I won't fix the problem, but talking about it and not brewing it over in your head makes such a huge difference, or at least it did for me. I hope I don't sound like I'm preaching in a really cheesy way, but I quite seriously mean all of this. I've come back from this trip realising more than ever the importance of talking to people, the importance of friends. I guess that's the moral of my story.
Many thanks to those who read this blog, especially those who left comments, sent emails etc, all very much appreciated and needed along the road.
much love as ever,