Personal Piece- Metamorphosis

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            Tripp pants, chains, black nail polish, deep, dark eye liner, studded belts, Goth-metal—freshman year. I was your stereotypical “Goth” girl. I appeared afraid of no one, and I couldn’t stand to be around any adult figure (they reminded me of my mother and father). I hated the stale, white walls of the prison I was forced into each and every day. I much rather preferred to stay home and vegetate on the couch all day, until my step-father and mother came home from work. Once they came home, I would commute to my bedroom, in which I would spend the rest of the night, laying in my cold bed, watching ignorant shows on late night TV. Once I fell asleep, I was happy. I thought my life was absolutely horrible; couldn’t get any worse.
            Falling asleep, to me, meant that everything was ok. In my head, I thought, when you sleep you dream, when you dream you create what you see. For just a few hours, everything was how they should be. But then I would wake up, and everything would be back to the hell I was used to.
            Throughout my freshman year, I barely got by. I skipped three classes a day, never did my work, and I let my 14 year old attitude get me into more trouble than I could handle. At the time, I didn’t realize that I was only hurting myself, and that everything I did would turn around to bite me in the long run. I was barely making D’s and all my teachers were always on my case about my work. I thought that they were just fighting me because my behavior and my grades made them look bad, but they were only trying to help me.
            I was labeled as an outcast, but in a school of a thousand students, I wasn’t the only one. I made a lot of friends that year; People who were just like me. I was going through a lot of hard times at home, and failing at school wasn’t helping either. I wasn’t happy anywhere I went. When I was at home, I hibernated in my bedroom, and when I was at school, I just tuned everyone out, and my “friends” were the same way. We were all troubled, depressed children, from broken homes, who would have rather been out back smoking a joint, than actually doing something to better ourselves.
            Eventually the depression started to get to me. I got heavy into pills and I became a “cutter”. The cutting, the pain from the cutting, was equivalent to the pain I was hoarding inside of my soul. I hid the cuts on my arms with long-sleeves, wristbands, and bracelets. The deep cuts and the dark red blood made me happy, in a sick and demented way. When I forced the pain on myself, I felt as if no one could inflict pain on me, only I could. Once I would cut, I would take pills. They would knock me out or numb the pain, so I couldn’t feel anything. That’s how I liked it… Numb.
            After months of cutting, the numbing stopped. The blood was no longer satisfying my need to be free from my internal pain. I needed something more, or something less for that matter. It got to the point in which I could not see a tomorrow. I thought about suicide on a daily basis. The plans I had for this dirty deed was engraved into my brain. The more I thought about it, the better ending my life sounded.
            By the end of my freshman year, things started looking up, but then everything was shot down when my mother informed me that I was getting pulled out of the school that I loved and hated all in the same, and being transferred to the school across town. I was furious. Everything I had ever known was at my school, I did not want to have to start all over in the middle of high school, but I had no choice. Mother said, “You need a more structured environment.” I will never forget those words. They burned through me like the hottest flames from the deepest pits of hell. That whole summer, I thought to myself, “I’ll show her… I’ll start school there, I’ll hate it, and I’ll end my life. I’ll finally end my life. That’ll teach her. It will all be her fault for forcing me into my new prison.”
            I spent the summer acting as if nothing was wrong, and when school started, I turned back into a monster. I had a few friends, but I had turned into every parent’s nightmare. In late September, I had had enough. I was going to do it. I had made up my mind. I was finally going to end all the pain and suffering I thought I couldn’t get out of, and the only way I saw of doing this was by ending my life.
            As I sat in my bedroom, knife in hand, ready to end it all, all the fury and anger I had towards everyone did a complete one-eighty, and I began to sob. I wasn’t sure what had triggered the waterworks, but they were coming on strong. I couldn’t take the sobbing anymore and I could no longer hold the knife steady, so I put the knife away and I curled up on my bed. I cried myself to sleep that night, thinking that I couldn’t do anything right, I couldn’t even kill myself.
            I woke up the next morning and got on to check my messages, and I saw a disturbing bulletin that a friend of mine had posted. I learned that morning that the very night I was going to end my own life, the life of a wonderful friend of mine was ended in a unfortunate car accident. I cannot express the guilt and pain I was feeling. I couldn’t imagine life with her gone, but I realized that if I ended my life then, my friends would lose it. After my grief counseling was finished, I began seeing the schools therapist regularly.
            Not long after everyone, including myself, had come to terms with the loss of such an amazing person, her death triggered a suicide. The first suicide triggered another. Like dominoes, the suicidal epidemic went on for months; one right after another. It made things so much harder, not only on me, but on others as well. We were all losing people we cared about. We were sophomores in high school, our friends weren’t supposed to be dying. It didn’t seem fair, but it made all of us stronger and made us all closer. We started to appreciate the little things that we didn’t notice before.
            To this day, it is still so hard to wrap my warped mind around the fact that an epidemic such as this could make me a better person, but it did. When I look at the scars on my arms, I no longer want to pick up a knife and cut deeper. When I look at them now, it just reminds me that there really is a tomorrow. They remind me how much I have grown and that no matter how bad things seem, things could always be worse.
“From the very fear that makes you want to die
Is just the same as what keeps you alive
It's way more trouble than some suicide is worth”
–BNL “War on Drugs”
I realized that if I had killed myself that night, I would have hurt so many people. I realized that I had and have people around me who care about me and my well-being. Killing myself wouldn’t have been worth it, it would have been more trouble than anything else. And as sad as it may be, the suicides of my friends made me into a better person, and changed my life for the better. After the suicides, the fear of dying is quite literally what kept me alive. Three years has passed since I attempted to end my life, and I am happier now than I have ever been.