I'm 17 years old. Please don't tell me I have so much to live for, that youth is a beautiful thing. Don't tell me everything I'll miss. I've heard it all too many times. I want to die. I think I need it. I'm wasting away. I feel robotic. I move through the day on auto-pilot. Sometimes I feel as if I am watching myself from outside my body. And a part of me is convinced this needs to happen - not only because I want it, but to balance the universe. At the age of 5, I drowned. I became trapped underneath a canoe in the shallows at a summer camp. My heart stopped. I was gone. But they brought me back. I coughed up, my heart started again. My parents took me home, and never spoke of it again. But that didn't change what had happened. It was unnatural. I was gone. As some religions would say - perhaps it was God's will. But they brought me back, and disrupted the balance. A little over 10 years ago, I was involved in a violent home invasion. I listened to the men beat my uncle unconscious, shoot him, the crack of his skull. I listened to them drag his body, listened to them drag my screaming aunt to another room, her please through her tears. I listened to them try and break the door down, telling us children everything they would do. I survived. I shouldn't have. There was another precious opportunity for it all to end. At some point, between the home invasion and what would come next - I was sexually abused. I dont know by who. I don't even know what really happened. All I have are journals in my own 8-year old hand, descriptions of things I shouldn't have understood, and memories of games with dolls that should never have been created. Since then, I've been attacked twice more - once nearly taken from a bus stop, another time from my home. I've been diagnosed with PTSD, OCD and depression. And now, nearing my 18th birthday, I finally understand. I upset the balance. I need to die. I can't keep fighting. Yet the thing keeping me from ending it all, from blessedly swaying from the rafters, has been my family - the guilt. I know what it would do to them, especially to my father. It would destroy them, ruin four lives. I know they love me, I know I am loved and valued and precious. But I can't do it. But last night, during a particularly hard depression day, my dad spoke to me. He said "I've seen you fight every day. But it seems today you're letting it win." I could see his disappointment, his anger that I wouldn't fight - that for a single day I gave in. And in that moment, my last tether snapped. The guilt went away. He can't understand what he has done - I want it to win. I never want to fight again. I know what I will do. I've always known. But I finally think I can do it, I can rest. And this, at long last, will be my final triumph. Yet something still holds me. And I dont know what it is. I can't speak or breathe a word. And I'm hoping, perhaps, someone can tell me what to do.