Since Day 25: “The Reason You Believe You’re Still Alive Today” and Day 26: “Have You Ever Thought About Giving Up on Life? If so, when and why?” seem to coincide with each other, I decided to give my readers a two for one post special. And it finally catches me up to the day I’m supposed to be on!! Yaaaaaay ME!
You know, God is a funny person. He so funny that he puts stuff in your path and life that make you stop and think about all the shit filled times that could have been your last. All the times when life in general just wasn’t bearable anymore. The times you wanted to off yourself but nothing in this world could convince you of otherwise. So you come to the conclusion of this… The reason why I’m still alive is because God is not finished with me yet. I mean what other reason could there be???
I’ve had an emotionally rough life. My emotions seemed to spiral out of control when my grandfather passed away towards the end of my sixth grade year. Up to that point in my life, I never really thought about life without Papa. I just figured he would be with me for a really long time or at least until I was old enough to understand what it meant emotionally to lose someone. I spent the majority of my sixth grade year in trouble with my family because my grades were slipping. Well shit I was sleepy all the time because I was going with them to the hospital. I sometimes had to spend the night in my grandfather’s hospital room because my mother was working nights. A year of that shit takes a toll on a twelve year old. Instead of comforting me or even understanding what was going on, I got cussed out. My nosy ass snitch of a grandmother would tell my mother’s youngest sister who for some reason assumed the role of head of the family and she would call and proceed to belittle and cuss me out while my grandmother just say there and fiddled with her thumbs. I think that was about the time I started crying myself to sleep at night because I just couldn’t handle grandma and my aunt’s constant nick picking. My mother was no help because she never defended me against them. And I couldn’t talk to her about anything because she always answered with some sort of biblical reference. I didn’t want to hear that. I wanted my mother to somehow make things better but she didn’t.
In high school, the shit hit the fan so hard, the fan and I both broke. Like most kids, I was trying to figure out my place in the world. I enjoyed high school. I was involved in various after school activities and my grades were off the chain. But for my grandmother, nothing I did was good enough especially after she found out I lost my virginity the summer of my junior year to a white boy preacher’s kid. From that point on, she deemed me the devil’s spawn and I needed saving. I should probably mention that she hated the fact I was dating a white boy and had no qualms about saying how she disliked me having friends who were not black. It was just one fucking thing after another. I should also mention that after finding out I lost my virginity that grandma thought I was sleeping with every male friend and/or guy I came across. It didn’t matter that nothing she said about me was true. So as long as long as she believed it to be true it was true.
I think that was the beginning stages of my depression. I felt powerless. My voice wasn’t getting me anywhere. My protests to my mother about grandma and her antics were falling upon death ears. To this day, I still cry when I think about all the nasty shit she used to say to me. I just don’t understand how anyone can belittle and break a person to the point of wanting to take drastic measures to make sure this doesn’t happen again. There were times when I would pray so hard for God to take me away. To bring back my grandfather and take me instead. I remember saying I don’t want to be here anymore. I can’t handle this. Thankfully I never really got to the point of actually offing myself. Thankfully God blessed me with friends who would rescue me from my hell on a regular basis.
To add to my already up and down bouts of depression, when I found out I was pregnant, I completely lost it! My emotions went every which way but the correct way. I didn’t want to keep her because I was still in school and part of me thought my family would not help me. My baby’s daddy wasn’t any help either. He never went to visit me nor did he go to the hospital when she was born. After my aunt and uncle took my daughter home with them, I sunk in a much deeper depression because that was the beginning of my estranged relationship with my mother and her family. I lost more than my daughter and a large part of myself that day in the hospital when I signed my parental rights away.
Fast forward to 2005, when Granny (my paternal grandmother) passed away. She was the only person in my family that accepted me for me. Flaws and all. How I miss her so very much because I could talk to her about everything. It didn’t matter what I said or how I said she understood I just needed someone to be there. And she was. I wholeheartedly believe she was God’s way of saving my life. She encouraged me to be me. She gave me the confidence to be whoever I wanted so as long as I was happy.
So there you have it. Thanks for reading…
The Southern Yankee