EDITOR’s NOTE: Yesterday, Perrysburg High School families found out that a 14 year-old student took her life. The following was a response to that announcement. Kayla’s letter is heartbreaking yet inspiring.
If you are having dark thoughts, please…please tell someone you love and trust.
Written by: Kayla Sykes
Time doesn’t stop.
Time is similar to a train without a destination. You fall into it, and eventually you fall out of it. It doesn’t even take a moment to say goodbye. Time has no feelings, connections, or family.
Unlike life, time continues. There isn’t a way to rewind, pause, or fast forward; and living in such an instantaneous world, makes that difficult. It is especially frustrating when you have to “wait it out.”
It wasn’t her time to go. I am sick over this, absolutely sick. I have never met her, but I know her all too well. Because I was her.
I don’t talk about my past often; because I put it behind me. I don’t think about my past often, because that isn’t me. But with every story I read about a young girl that takes her own life, the ghost of my past meekly chimes in.
And for Valerie, for Kayla Meeker, for all of the kids that have gone before their time, I will open up. Because, I for some reason survived. And if I did, than you can too. You have to give it time.
When I was 13 I woke up depressed. Absolutely nothing happened to me, besides teenage hormones and a transition to Jr. High. I was just a normal kid, with a normal family, and I had a normal life. Until a light went off. I was miserable, I didn’t know who I was, and with the world spinning uncontrollably around me, I lost myself in trying to find myself. I changed my hair, my clothes, my makeup; and the music I listened too. And with that, I became the target for all of the middle school and high school bullies. The bullying continued for a couple of years, and made me sick; I was constantly insecure and uncomfortable. I began to feel worthless, and started to inflict pain on myself. Therapy didn’t help. I wanted none of that. I didn’t want to be alive, and I wouldn’t be anymore. I was sick of being bullied, I was sick of the way I felt, and I was so sick of living with someone I hated so much; myself.
The feeling of shear empty is real, and cold, and dark. The echo of taunting and name calling is haunting. Wishing you wouldn’t wake up, so you didn’t have to live in a nightmare. Cutting yourself, and making yourself throw up so you could feel a different pain. The feeling is so painful, that the only thing that makes sense, is to leave. And one day, I left.
Like I said, I was just a normal girl, with a normal family who loved me. I was pretty certain a quarter of a bottle of ibuprofen would end my life; and so I took what was left, and went to bed scared and upset. I was upset that my mom let my brother use the computer. I was angry that my best friend wasn’t allowed to come over. I was walking on eggshells around a group that I desperately wanted to be a part of, and they would never let that happen. 3 people called me fat. My 7 year old sister was doing something annoying, and I’m pretty sure my mom wouldn’t let me dye my hair. My dad grounded me for making myself throw up, and I wasn’t invited to a birthday party, because someone made up a lie about me. These are the things that pushed me over the edge. These are the reasons I ended my life.
With news of another suicide, I feel as though I am a ghost, explaining what makes one feel so dark, lost, lonely, and a need to escape. I feel like a ghost of a teenage girl who left the world alone, and misunderstood. I am a girl who was bullied, I am a girl who was miserable, I am a girl who had enough, and I am a girl who decided to commit suicide.
Had my suicide attempt been successful, I would not be here 11 years later writing about it. Time happens, and it’s in our favor. If my life ended in the dark clouds, I never would have learned how to climb a mountain, and come out stronger. I never would have gotten the chance to experience life, and life comes with happiness, and sadness. But with the scars of sadness, we learn. I’ve traveled, fallen in love, found my passion, and most importantly; to me; I have brought a beautiful life into this world. And until you hear the belly laughter of your own child, you haven’t lived life. I have worked with amazing children from all over the United States, some on their last days of life. I have gotten to help solve a few puzzles with former children of mine on the Autism Spectrum. I have been so blessed to be able to share my passion with my own child. And I am able to watch this person, that I love most in the world, strive to be like me. Her heart and compassion for all people is something I know I have in some way modeled for her, and that; was worth waiting for. The years of bullying, and sadness end; and great things come with time. I promise, just give it time.