Two days after a self attempted suicide I woke up to bright sunlight streaming down my face. Ooooh what beautiful weather. What a beautiful day. Throwing the mink blanket aside I tried to get up from the bed when dizziness suddenly enveloped me and the staggering pain hit my arm. I notice that thou the swelling had subsided, it had a dark bluish blackish reddish colour combination of bruisemark left behind by IV (intravenous) syringe .
My eyes welled up in tears. I had wanted to die, but was saved. I was living alone, independently, juggling between my personal and professional life and top of that, my health condition, the side effect of the drugs that takes toll on my system at times. I was Anemic, suffering from low Haemoglobin and have frequent dizzy spells which interferes with my day to day lifestyle. Being alone too was also the biggest issue as I had no one to cook me breakfast/lunch/dinner when I wasn’t well, no one to talk to when I was down, to share my happiness and my sorrows, success and my failures, no one with whom I can enjoy my yet “another” day. In short, I had no one to live for that was “worth” my living. My marriage was broken in 2008, my parents /relatives long abandoned me, my boyfriend is no longer my boyfriend but my best friend, have lot of friends but no one to talk to regarding my problems that I could trust enough to share, and top of it all, I was undergoing tough situation in personal front and office pressures building on the other side. By the looks at it, I was already having anxiety attacks from various angles, depression was setting in which was eating me up emotionally, making me mad day by day. The more I with-held, the worse I grew. And then finally one day I couldn't take it! I texted to few people who mattered, and consumed phenyl, a kind of a liquid poison. I had considered myself a “survivor”, a “struggler” but in fact I had become a “loser”. I have always wanted to be loved. ALWAYS. I lacked love ever since I was born. I never knew what a mother’s love is like, never felt my dad’s love as long as I lived with him for 18 years, with male friends it was more of “lust” than love (and I was too naïve that time to even know the difference between it) and the only love that I shared when I got married was also short-lived. Now that the virus has claimed my body, I lost 2 more important people in my life. My best friend and my boyfriend. My best friend (Mr. A) dumped me for telling him upfront regarding my status, and my boyfriend (Mr. B) broke the relationship but stood by me as my best friend when he came to know that I lied to him about me having cancer instead of HIV. Everyone needs love, especially when they do not or at least deserve it. Who understands this better than the one who has never been loved or who has been loved just for a while and later shunned for no fault of theirs? There is so much hunger for love in this world than for anything else, more than money or even happiness. I tried breeding hatred for others in my heart but instead I was developing a hatred within me, inside me for myself, for being born, for what I am. And the reason of my hatred was many : From not being a good daughter, sister, friend, wife and mother to finally being HIV Positive!! Thou I had sympathy, empathy, pity, love, care and concern for others and would go out of my way for them if needed be, the only thing I had no feeling was for myself. I was only degrading myself, killing myself, blaming myself for whatever was happening or had happened in my life. This is how it felt “being alone”. “Being lonely”.
After being discharged from the hospital, my best friend (Mr. B) gave me a good lecture. He was upset of my cowardly act which I regretted later and know was not the right thing to do. I tried telling him that I didn’t mean to do it but at times when things drive me to despair, when I was crying for help but no one understood me, even the “mighty” ones at such situations DO fail. There are times when something snaps within that had been withheld too long. But he would hear nothing of it. Instead, I had to listen to him, too ashamed to say more, ashamed coz I lost my respect in front of his eyes coz of my cowardly act and he had lost his trust in me. He thought of me to be strong but then my committing a suicide was showing a different picture. “Admit it, Jyoti, that u are too weak, too insecure, and I will respect that”, he said.
But I did not admit. Rather, I didn’t say anything at all.
Though he did admonish me, I could sense his love, care and concern in his voice. And I realised I was “expecting” too much from people. And then that’s when a real “courage” was born. “Fearless” became the “word” and my dream project was being incubated. I told him, “From henceforth, I will not say anything about my HIV thingie, about my blogs, about how I went on to light other people’s life. From now on, let my action speak to u more than my words. From now on, YOU will hear about me rather than me telling you”.
This incident made me “feel” what we, the HIV Survivors could feel. It made me feel that we failed to be understood by people not infected by the virus. They don’t understand that thou we do look healthy outside, we were battling many demons inside. My suicide took me closer to the psychological mind of the infected. It made me feel how they “feel”, how they are “affected” and how even a mere harsh words can shatter their heart or a toughest problem can drive them to utter despair. How they yearn for love, for being wanted, to be accepted. It made me want to be with them. That I will be there for them. That I will be their ear, that I will be their heart, that I will be their shoulder to cry on, that I will be their pillar of emotional support. That I will be everything they want me to be : A daughter, sister, friend, mother. Leaving the “wife” part which I can be for just one :) :).
Thus the result of my action? On 21st April, I have a meeting with someone who will be my partner in opening up a foundation for HIV infected people. After my lunch meeting with him, we will be roping in media for publicity coverage to highligh the plight of HIV people in India and also looking up at some organisation who would sponsor/fund our project, who would bring some love, some cheer in their lives. A guy whom I am partnering with told me that I am playing a dangerous game, that I am risking my life and that it will be a gross violation of my human rights should I go public, show my face when India is still in the stage of inception, but I hardly care. I told him that I am doing it more for THEM than for MYSELF. And also, ( I told myself secretly ) I am doing it more to bring my lost respect and trust back in my best friend's (Mr. B) eyes, my ex-bf whom I loved and still love. He planted that seed in my distraught mind and I am going to make it into a fragrant blooming flower capturing many hearts and winning million’s love just to light up the life of the infected population in India and make their day! My budding dream is already on its way to becoming a reality.
(I know now that suicide is not, and never will be, the answer. It was a big mistake. There are resources for people who were feeling down like me, and people who can help.)
There isn't a single person in the world that hasn't Had to struggle with something or overcome Difficulties at some point in life. We all face Challenges and adversity.
At this very moment you may be facing one, whether They're related to money, health , children, family Or careers. It is all part of being alive.
Recognize that obstacles are just part of your Journey. Don't let them stop you and never give up.
Instead, think of them as milestones that once Passed will bring you closer to your goals.
Remember that with every challenge passed, you are a Little stronger, a little wiser and more prepared for The rest of your journey.