REMEMBERING SOFTLY

[written in 2016]

Dear L,

I'm writing to present-day you because you need to hear from yourself...

You are 29 and flailing. You have been considering suicide for years and the last two have felt like a severe fight to live. You're terrified by the casualness with which this option presents itself but you're still here and that means something. It must.

I think I have to remind you of the things you have survived. Because you think you are failing at life... you need to stop comparing yourself to other people and their success. Whatever that means.

You have lived through abuse, and although you sometimes still blame yourself for what they did, you have to remember that you survived it. You still struggle to say the word, but even if you won’t name it, you lived through it. More than once. And you are here.

The one that haunts you the most? You were a child. He was a man. You know you would never let another 14 year old girl blame herself.

You have lived through a broken family. Please be soft with yourself. Your parents' choices are their own. And though you won't pray on it anymore, you have to remember to love them for who they are, not who you want them to be.

Distance and Death will take your loves away. You will never be prepared. Remember that "no one ever leaves you". Lianne knew what she was talking about.

Remember the things you survived, love. But remember that you survived them.

L.

 

Note from us at Hadithi:

For some resources on suicide prevention, do check out Befrienders Kenya, which is so far the only organisation in Kenya with a specific focus on suicide prevention.  The Suicide Prevention Resource Centre website is also very useful, even if not based in Kenya. We will soon provide more resources for people both in Kenya and in Africa on a resources tab on our website (on a wide range of issues including suicide), so do keep checking back. 

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