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I just wanted to die…

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For years half of me wanted to die and half of me wanted to live. Life, I felt, was so brutal that I was no competition for it.

I was living a constant internal battle until finally my will to die won and I began planning my death. All aspects of my life began to die. I stopped hanging out with my friends and family. I began to give things away. My body slowly began dying as I stopped eating and drinking. My breathing became shallower and my insides were dark and cold.

I woke up and decided that I was going to die that day. I stacked my journals by my bed so that my family would understand what happened. I also piled all of my pills there on the night stand.

I had to run a few errands to complete my plans. I walked into a coffee shop and immediately a man came over and began vigorously shaking my hand. His warmth, love and compassion came pouring out. “Hi! My name is John,” he said. He talked so openly about Christ and His love that I felt like he was speaking to the best part of my heart. His enthusiasm for his faith gave me the courage to live one more day. John quoted Matthew 28:19 (“Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit…”). He told me how his church helped build homes and schools around the world. Little did John know that he was vocalizing the very dreams and prayers I had whispered to God in my darkest night. His words were enough for me to realize that God’s plan for my life was not over yet. His handshake rattled the very core of my being, and I felt like life had come pouring back into me.

Today my life is so full and rich. Last year, I was blessed to build a home for tornado victims in Joplin, Mississippi. My dreams were indeed coming true.

I am alive today because of one simple act of kindness. I encourage you to find your joy. It exists. I also want to challenge you to show kindness to everyone you meet. After all, you never know whose life you might save.

T.A., Pennsylvania

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