Mariel Hemingway, granddaughter of legendary writer, is one of the most fascinating people on the planet, in my humble opinion. My life has been extraordinarily impacted by my mother’s suicide. It rocked my world to the core. However, I have had to carry the burden of just one suicide. One is certainly enough, but Mariel has experienced at least 7, that she is aware of. I simply cannot imagine how one could bear so much.
The most frightful thing about suicide in my immediately family for me was the terror and the gut-wrenching, incessant feeling of impending doom that suicide was my fate. I saw it as this sort of tangible darkness that was just waiting in the rafters to eat me alive. I thought I couldn’t get away from it…ever And, do you know how many health professionals told me that my risk of suicide was dramatically increased because of my mother’s suicide? Why? Why did so many people tell me this? I mean, had any of them ever heard of the term self-fulfilling prophecy?
I don’t mind going on record to tell you that the majority of this blog has been dedicated to gloom and doom. I’m sincerely sorry for that and thankful for the support that you all so beautifully and unselfishly gave me. I honestly don’t even know how long it’s been since my last post. Do you know why? It’s entirely because I am blissfully well and happy for the first time in my entire life. I experienced true healing: body, mind, and soul. I have truly been delivered and set free from the bondage of unspeakable fear.
My depression had been present since March of 2010 when a remarkably tough and insanely unfair even happened in my life. However, from October 2012-March 2013, I was in the grips of a severe and seemingly unyielding clinical depression. I was literally at the precipice of death. I could barely get out of bed to use the restroom. My hygiene even suffered. Bar none, it was the bottom of the bottom for me. I could barely make a fist at times. And I was so scared. I have never been more afraid, particularly for my children.
I fought like hell to get well. I worked harder than I’ve ever worked in my entire life. A immeasurable part of the healing process came from the work I did at Onsite Workshops, in Cumberland Furnace, Tennessee. You can bet that I will write much more about this remarkably amazing, cathartic, mystical place… Right now, however, I just want you to know that I am no longer afraid. I no longer live in constant, crippling fear and anxiety. I know that I am NOT now nor will I ever be a statistic.
I am no longer depressed. I keep ahead of depression spiritually by praying, meditating, simplifying, expressing abundant gratitude, and not allowing myself to cultivate negative thoughts. I work overtime to think positive, life-giving thoughts. I keep ahead of depression emotionally by truly loving and honoring myself, avoiding toxic people who are psychic vampires, not allowing anyone to abuse me in any fashion, setting and keeping healthy boundaries, and by focusing on the people who have eternal significance in my life (as opposed to those who seek to harm me). And I keep ahead of depression physically by putting healthy, non-processed foods in my body (particularly fresh fruits and vegetables), taking my Juice Plus+ (which I never intend to live without again), and exercising regularly in a way that I love and enjoy.
NO ONE, AND I MEAN ABSOLUTELY NO ONE “HAS” TO ALLOW ANY SORT OF MENTAL ILLNESS TO DEFINE THEM.
I think that each and every one of you should watch this short video. It would sincerely mean so much to me if you did. We all need to become advocates for those suffering in silence with mental illnesses and/or addiction. It’s time to talk about the elephant in the room!
All my love,
Ava Elizabeth Wisdom