Tree of life

It started with a message from a friend “I mean, they literally said ‘did you grow up in a cult?'” A casting call for people with unusual backgrounds. A peek into their lives. I responded, I said, “I grew up in a cult.” The producers called me for an interview, we talked for 45 minutes. Mostly me talking, with a few audible gasps from the other end of the line. They were intrigued by the story, I am cast in the video. They want to focus on one situation in my life: the suicide choice. I said okay, and I have felt okay, until today. Today I’m nervous. I have been writing this public blog for everyone to see, but tomorrow I will be in front of a camera. I feel a little more exposed than usual. It’s okay, I’m okay with talking about it. The choice to end it all or carry on is a heavy one, and a choice that I don’t often speak of. I became suicidal when I was 19, 20, I don’t remember. How can you choose one thing to lead you to that thought? Many situations led up to me driving my car around all day looking for a tree to drive my car into. And I had one picked out. I drove up and down that road for hours thinking “this time” and then “next time” each time passing it by. Then I decided to give myself one more chance. I asked “how can you choose to end it all when you haven’t even given yourself a chance?” I didn’t have an answer. I decided that I was going to live for what was right, and I wanted to find out what makes me happy. I was going to stop listening to the pastors and everyone else. I didn’t care if I had to throw a fit, yell and scream, I didn’t care. What was the worst they could do to me? Kill me? I want to die anyway so go ahead. They didn’t kill me, I made some tough choices. It was hard, I did comply to them for a while because I was not sure if I was ready to live on my own. I played the game, but slowly backed out. I didn’t answer Ted when he called. He got mad. I met my husband shortly after this incident. The “authority” told me not to date him. I did. He makes me happy. They told me I had to be home at midnight. I wouldn’t come home on the weekends, I was happy. They started leaving me alone, probably waiting for me to fall. I fell in love. I fell in love with my husband and I am still learning to love myself. Every time I drive down that road I look at that tree. Happy to see the tree is still alive, and happy that I am still alive.

~E

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