I was so thirsty. So tired I cried as I trekked through the hot sand that seemed nothing less than an insult at the time. We’d hiked nine miles into the Canyon and had just one mile to go but it felt like another 10.
Worse yet, I could actually *hear* the water. Taunting and teasing me. Letting me know it was right there, just out of reach.
I sobbed and stumbled. He grabbed my hand and walked alongside me, pulling me to the finish line. I was tired. I was done. I didn’t want to do this anymore. But there was no other way than forward and he was right there with me.
So along we trudged, until we caught sight of this. In the desert. In an instant, our skin was saturated with moist air. Our eyes delighted with sight and our ears blaring with the roar of Mother Nature in her rawest beauty.
We’d known it was there all along and yet it still came as a glorious surprise.
Drowning. Funneling. Spiraling out of control. Down the tubes I go.
This is something that happens to other people, not me.
I’m highly self-aware. I go to counseling. I write about my feelings. I am immune.
Or am I?
How far down must we go before we reach out for help?
I hit my lowest point a few weeks ago, when at 1 AM, I looked out to the water and wondered what would happen if I just slipped in quietly, and disappeared.
It’s hard to admit, even harder to type, but that thought went through my sleep-deprived brain. Followed immediately by the remaining tiny fragments of my healthy mind reminding me that by doing so, I was only transferring my hurt and pain to my loved ones.
So instead, I wrote. I typed out my deep, dark thoughts on a sticky note in my phone as I entered the fifth hour of non-existent sleep and waited for morning to come and save me.
How far must we go before we set aside our pride and shame and liberate ourselves by calling it what it is?
I’ve suffered in silence but now, I am reaching out. Recognizing I cannot do this alone. Holding the hands of others who suffer and holding onto those who lift me up as I sink.
Making it through breakfast. Making it to lunch. Making it to dinner. Through bedtime. Until Midnight. Repeating until I rise again, from my bed, from this darkness. Reclaiming my stride, my identity and my purpose as a writer, wife and mother.