Whats your story? Hello, this is the very first time I have ever written about my battle and problems with self injury, depression, and suicide. Before you commit to reading this, I want everyone to know I am two years sober and self injury free. I may have not found my place in this big blue world but I’m on my way. The only positive memories I have of my childhood are my horses, Misha was the only thing that gave me hope. The hours I didn’t spend with him, all I remember was hiding underneath my bed, to avoid my father. I remember him hitting my brother and I, he never, and I don’t think will ever care for me. One particular incident, I was 12 or 13 years old and he tried to choke me, throwing me out of the house. I walked to the remote woods far from our house and sat in the mud and cried. I asked why is he like this toward me, why am I his outlet for such hate? As years passed, my brother became the family favorite. He received no more punishments or violence. Football became his life, it encompassed our household from dawn till dusk. We were all on our toes, if my brother lost a game I was afraid to return home. One morning my brother and I waited for our school bus to take us, he was maybe 12 at the time, holding his backpack and shoulder pads. I didn’t stand next to him, but he playfully shoved the pads in my face and pulled them back. During one swing the clip met my face and sliced through my lower lip. I still have the scar today, no punishment was given to my brother, and no one was there to drive me to get stitches. It was passed off as an accident. At this point I was very depressed. I hated school; my friends were nothing but shallow inconsiderate models. One night I hiked to the edges of the woods and sat and cried. It was there I decided I really didn’t belong here. I didn’t want to be here anymore. I already had dabbled with some drugs, smoked, and broke into the alcohol, I also stared doing inhalence, anything that could get me high. I had no passions in my life, nothing I truly loved in this life. So why be there? Misha had long been absent from my life, and I thought of him every day. But once I forgot the memories, when the drugs over passed his memory I was ready to leave. So, I went to my basement, to the farthest corner and cut myself. And beat my head against the cement, until the room spun so fast I couldn’t keep up. I don’t remember how long I stayed there waiting for something to happen. I dragged myself upstairs to swallow a whole bottle of aspirin. I figured if I was going to do this I didn’t want to feel much. I had attempted but failed. At the time, I always believed I was ugly. No one ever commented on my face, my hair…so I took a razor to my face and cut the imperfections from my skin. Mostly the right side of my cheek where there had been a zit or two. After this I went to my room and cut myself. That was the last time I self Injured. I would love to tell you that my family pulled me out, that my friends all came to aid with sad expressions and open hearts…but thats not what happened. It’s sort of a blur as to what pulled me out of my depression…at the time I had been riding a horse named Will. Whom is now mine, I felt that I could tell him everything and he could never judge, his love and compassion was a key factor in helping me. I also had a revelation at the time, my grandmother had just passed (RIP I miss her everyday) and I was helping clean out her apartment. And I found a obituary column from my late uncle. I had never understood how he died, but the article cleared things up for me. My uncle had been a addict, smuggling drugs throughout the country. His drugs where his life, and one day he couldn’t take it anymore. He shot himself in the head. At that moment I realized I wasn’t alone…I thought, wow I wish I would have been able to talk to him. He could help me make sense of all this confusion and pain, we could have helped each other. But the reality was he had gone through with it, he had done what I had almost. And because of that he wasn’t there to hug me, he wasn’t there for me to cry on his shoulder. A couple months passed and I still felt empty, I was always tempted to cut myself, and I even planned that when I got my license and I felt this way I would drive my car into a tree an end it. That all changed one day in August I was flipping through the channels and came across a program that promoted singers/songwriters. I watched it a man named Marty Casey was singing a song…at the time I didn’t know the artist, I rarely listened to music. The song was called “Wish you were here”, and at that moment my life changed. I sat their and listened, I felt that he was singing to me, the song related to me, and made me think how I wish my family, my friends, how I wish all them were there for me, and how much I missed them. Through watching Marty every week, I discovered my passion. I discovered something that made me feel peace, love, filled the empty hole in heart….music. And not just any music, real music the kind that makes you feel something, whether its hope, a sense of self worth or happiness. From there I became enthralled with Pink Floyd, Queen, Radiohead, Nirvana….they saved my life, and I thank Marty Casey for bring them into my life. Fast forward 3 and half years… I write this today because I threw away my last pack of cigarettes, and my rusted razorblade I kept around ‘just in case’. I will always have moments in my life where I think about what if…that I still could. But to leave this earth, leave my mother, and to never do the things I have passion for would be far worse then death. My father and brother moved out years ago, I love my brother and talk to him daily. I live with my mom, (whom I have reconnected with and love so much), our dog Anky, and cats Reid, Count, Art, Jack, and Chloe. Will is going on 17 this year, he lives at a farm 15 minutes from home so I ride him and see him daily. You can say I cut out the negative people in my life, the kind that don’t have anything nice to say. They are gone from my life, because its way to short to listen to voices that are not positive. I have almost finished my 2 year Art degree and have found love in painting, drawing designing. I plan to internship this summer at a Christian radio station/ suicide help line. And continue in either my love for fiction writing or criminology for a bachelors. I have held a steady job for over a year, and have realized my leadership skills. After my many music findings, one of my best friends introduced me to Radio U. It has changed my life, they speak of gods word, and how he loves all of us…the kind of love I truly wanted all those years ago. Their music has a amazing message, but is still brutal…yes their rock and metal, and even slower songs are not your cliché Christina ‘the River’ crap. It is a whole new breed of passionate music. I have seen hundreds of bands live, stretching my fingers for any new music. I also connected with the man who helped me find the thing I love so much, Marty. To this day I have seen him and his band six times, and he is a close friend. Always full of hugs and a positive message to say. He knows my story, and doesn’t look at me as if I am cursed. This gave me hope that other people may understand…I have talked to my closest friends about what I have been through, it feels so good to let it off my chest. I have vowed to sober, and suicide free for the rest of my life, and it makes me smile. Because it didn’t take me, its so hard to get through, but its even harder to think back now and think of what I would have missed. All the people I would have never met, all the smiling faces that want to know me. That I would have never known Will the way I do now. Gods positive word, and the people that preach it gave me hope. I have never been to a service, I embrace him in my own way by taking advantage of every moment I have here. That is my story, I hope it helps anyone feeling the way I used to. I am always here to talk.