I was nine when I first attempted to kill myself.
Daddy was a rickshaw driver. I remember mummy and sister being present in the trishaw. I was arguing with daddy over something minuscule.
I raised my voice and retorted him self-righteously. He pulled up at the curb under our residential block and I dashed out – eager to sequester myself from the impending meltdown.
In the heat of fury, daddy bolted after me, into the lift. With a raised hand, he edged closer, his face only an inch away from mine. His red, angry eyes bore into mine. His body was shaking with rage. He was prepared to hit me.
I felt my eyes drawing tears but I bit my lip and willed myself to be strong. It was the only way. The slap hurt.
I flung open my house door and charged into my room. I shut it and swiftly turned on the lock. I didn’t deserve the slap. Maybe I was wrong to raise my voice, but did that justify the slap?
I shook my head furiously. No. I sobbed into my blanket. Its softness contrasted with the harshness I had just received. It made me sob even harder.
Mummy knocked urgently on the door, demanding me to open it. I let her in and glared angrily.
“Daddy hit me and you did nothing! You just watched!”
Mummy didn’t know how badly I wanted her to rescue me. She was the only one with authority. The only one who could stop daddy.
I knew daddy wanted to hit me more than just a slap. I could see it in his eyes. What if he did? Would mummy have allowed it too?
Angry tears streamed down my cheeks and I wiped them away roughly. She didn’t care; it didn’t bother her. It must be the only reason she stood rooted to the ground, stock-still.
“There was nothing I could do!”
I wanted to laugh out loud. It was the most ludicrous thing I have heard. She could have yelled at him, pulled him away, or said something. Something! How hard was that?
The fact that she didn’t even try meant that she didn’t love me. Both my parents didn’t love me. My sister as well. While I was confronting mummy, sister simply stood outside of my room, insouciant.
I was not worthy of existence.
Suicide seemed like a plan. I revised my options: dying from lack of oxygen, dying from excessive bleeding, dying from jumping off a high building. The first option seemed best.
I lay down on my bed, head rested on my pillow. I could do this. I rehearsed it umpteen times in my mind, and I held my breath.
I let go, desperately gasping for air. I couldn’t do it. I concluded that I wasn’t brave enough.
But, now, after so many years from my attempt-suicide, I know that I was brave and I still am. All the effort I once put in trying to end my life, I used them to live the same and I can proudly say that I have succeeded.
Sometimes, all you need is to put the hurt behind and believe in the good things that are yet to come.
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