My Suicide Attempt
That Sunday was no different to any other Sunday. It was the 17th December, and I had to work, so I got up 9, showered and dressed by 9:30 and then dad drove me to work, I was working for Clinton cards at the time. I felt odd, sad, I wanted to cry, and I felt like someone had stamped on my heart. I was so used to the feeling and just carried on as normal. Started off the day normally, mad rushes of customers, quiet periods, and customers in the way when you’re trying to fill racks and shelves, same old shit different day.
Then it hit me, darkness swept over me and took my breath away. I felt numb, I couldn’t hear properly, it was like I’d gone so deep into my own head that I couldn’t judge what I was doing. I tried to shake it off, I managed to a bit. So I did what I always did when this happens, I hid. I ran into the stockroom and started finding the stock I needed. I spent ages getting it because I knew I’d have to go back out there with all them people glaring at me like some freak if they see the scars. I knew I’d be surrounded by people wherever I was on the shop floor that day.
So I kept dashing to and from the stockroom, I kept taking a ‘breather’ or I would have ended up a crying wreck in front of everyone. Nothing bad happened that day, it could have been a good day had I not been so god damn depressed, I didn’t know what I felt most of that day. But I was thinking about death a lot. I wouldn’t say I was suicidal though, I’ve been suicidal before this was different. Then I started to plot my death. I thought tonight is the night. But I’d been thinking that same thought for ages and nothing ever happened so I pushed it aside.
I felt invincible, like no one could hurt me. Like I wouldn’t have to worry about what I did today and how it would affect people tomorrow. I was shaky, in a jittery kind of mood at 4 when we closed. I had a friend drop me 5 mins walk from home after work. I got out the car and said thanks to them. And then I knew what was going to happen. I was going to go home and end the pain I felt. I stopped off at the small supermarket and bought a bottle of vodka and 32 paracetamol. And I continued my journey home.
If there was anyone home my plan would be ruined. I couldn’t do it with any of my family in the same house when I did it. I got home and the house was empty. I took a shower, I didn’t know where mum and dad were, they told me the night before but I wasn’t listening. I got dressed in jogging bottoms and a sweatshirt, I put some washing on. And I turned all the downstairs lights off. Then I went upstairs to my bedroom and hunted through my drawers until I found every last pill I could get. I had 56 Effexor 200mg (anti depressant), 34 extra strong painkillers (codeine and ibuprofen), 12 mefenamic acid (muscle relaxant for period pains), 46 paracetamol, 34 propranolol (anti-anxiety med). I took all the pills out of their blister packs and I held them all in my hands.
I took the first handful washed it down with water and the 2nd and 3rd handfuls I washed down with half a bottle of vodka. Then I found a craft knife, I tested the blade on the back of my hand, and with one tiny swipe I had a cut. I sat on my bed and I cut my arm, praying that I’d have the strength to hit a vein and I did but only slightly. I felt spaced out, I felt at peace with everything. I looked at the clock, it was 8:15. I didn’t leave a note for mum and dad. They got home at 9:30 and mum walked into my room and found me laying there, they called for an ambulance.
I remember laying there I didn’t want to open my eyes mum was holding my hand, she kept crying and asking ‘why did you do it Jacqui, Why?’ I felt sad, I wanted them to leave me alone, heck I didn’t know what was going on. The paramedics escorted me to the ambulance cos I didn’t need a stretcher, I could walk just felt a bit wobbly. I think most of that was psychological. I felt stupid, so I sat with mum at my side in the ambulance and she paramedic took my details meanwhile I was looking round the ambulance to see if I could escape. But I couldn’t I was physically weak, I had lost a lot of blood aswell as taking a lethal cocktail.
Nothing seemed real. It was like I was watching this happen to someone else through their eyes. When we got to the hospital I was escorted into a corridor and told to wait. Mum was there propping me up or I would have passed out. Then a nurse came and got me and took me to a room. I laid on the bed, my heart was racing. She told me to take my sweatshirt off and wear a backless gown. Then some other nurse appears with a piece of machinery and she stuck pads all over my chest and did a tracing of my heart. Then someone else came along with another machine and stuck more sticky pads over my chest and put me on a heart monitor that made a quiet beep every time my heart beat, my heart was beating very fast because of the Effexor and every time I moved the alarm went off and they’d rush in and check on me. My temperature was up to 41 (normal body temp is 37).
While all this was going on mum was sat in the corner of the room still letting the fact that I’d tried to kill myself sink in. then a doctor appeared, she stuck a huge needle in my arm and put an IV line in so they could inject any needed drugs into me, she took some blood. She cleaned up my arm and Steri-stripped most of the cuts then bandaged my arm up. Then told me I had to stay overnight and would have to talk to the duty psychiatrist, I nodded feeling very dazed and confused. Then it was just me and mum and we spoke about a lot of stuff, stuff I wouldn’t normally tell her, stuff that I wouldn’t tell her again.
A nurse appeared with a cup of black liquid and told me to drink it then she produced a 1.5 pint bottle of the black stuff and told me I’d have to drink it all or they’d end up putting a tube down my throat. So I was a good little girl and drank it, it was vile, gritty, tasteless nauseating it was activated charcoal to neutralize any drugs in my system. Mum said she was going to phone work and tell them I wouldn’t be in on Tuesday. I said just tell them I’ve got a stomach bug. I didn’t want everyone knowing. She said okay and then went home at 2:30 a.m. Not long after mum had gone I was transferred up to a ward. A doctor came and took some blood, asked me why I did it, and I just said ‘I don’t want to live like this anymore’ but I didn’t actually know why I had done it and still don’t understand why I did it. I was in the medical assessment unit because there were no beds anywhere else.
The staff were nice and didn’t treat me bad because I had OD’d. They asked me about 30 questions about who I was what I was where I was and stuff and then they weighed me. And left me alone for an hour, then the nurse came round did my blood pressure, took my temp and shone a torch in my eyes. They did it every hour. I didn’t sleep at all well that night. I had to have a desk fan next to me because I was so hot. I couldn’t sleep, I was just taking in my surroundings when eventually I fell asleep at about 5 a.m.
Then at 7 a.m. the curtains in the ward opened, I hid under my sheet, eyes closed wanting to disappear and get out of there. I got up at about 8:30-ish and laid on my bed for the whole day, I refused to eat and only drank water. I laid on the bed staring out of the window at the grey murky sky with the new Sugababes song (new year) going round in my head but only one line of it. “I’m older than my years, I’m drowning in my tears, surrounded by the fear”. I wanted to cry, I was scared, I wanted to go home. I was beginning to wish I hadn’t done it. I knew I’d hurt people and I hated myself even more than before because I’m so useless I couldn’t even kill myself.
Then a member of the rapid assessment team came to assess me, I blagged my way out of being admitted to there, I told her it was a stupid mistake and that I didn’t mean to kill myself. She said I could go so I phoned mum, then the head nurse came over, took the IV line out my arm, re-dressed my arm and made sure I didn’t feel suicidal when I left. Mum came to pick me up at about 2:35 p.m. And I went home she told me she had told work what had happened but only people who needed to know knew, and that was only a couple. The second I got home I showered and took all the sticky patches off of me. Then I went to bed and just slept for the whole day and night. The next day mum dragged me round Sainsbury’s and Wednesday I went back to work, I shouldn’t have because I was physically and emotionally unstable.
Sandra, my boss at the time and Laura the assistant manager knew so did one of my friends. They were very supportive and gave me time and space I needed and encouraged me to speak about it. But as usual I managed to hide a lot from everyone. Now I am annoyed at myself that I didn’t manage to die, but it proves the point that I am useless and I am scared. I don’t know why I tried to kill myself that day, I don’t understand why I did it.
I’m really confused about the whole thing. Every time someone mentions suicide or anything about it I freeze and it shuts me off from feeling anything for a while. And I have flashbacks of that night at home and in the hospital. I don’t know how I’m going to get over this. I feel dead. I feel numb and buried. There are still tears to be cried about me attempting suicide, there’s one person who hasn’t cried about it and that person is me. I got out of hospital and acted ok, I put on a brave face but I wasn’t alright and I’m still not alright, I still hurt about it. I’m confused about it all. I’m confused about peoples reactions to it. It’s all got to stop because next time I won’t be found, next time I’ll do it right.
I know suicide is still an option, for me it always will be. I’ve been wanting death for so long now suicide is just another way to go. I do have the power to sever an artery, I know I do, I nearly did, I cut into it, but not far enough to kill me, far enough to scare me, but not for long. I’m dangerous to myself.