Pain, it makes you stronger.
You don't notice it at the time. When you're doubled over, with your whole body clenched in absolute agony that comes from the pit of your stomach, the centre of your heart, from the core of your being, you don't feel strong.
Weak. Pathetic. Failure.
How could you let yourself get this way? Why does what they say affect you so much? How is this fair? People go through so much worse every day, if you can't be strong like them, you must be weak.
You feel broken, afraid, hopeless. You can feel the darkness pressing down around you, crushing you, a brutal force against any light trying to enter into your life. Those cracks, those fragile cracks that have been holding your heart together so precariously finally shatter into a million tiny pieces. You feel each one as it slices through your heart, each one another reminder that you weren't strong enough to deal with this. Each shard a reminder that you are pathetic.
There is no way out of the vicious cycle of disappointment and self loathing. The last fragments of light are choked from your vision and your mind goes blank.
You reach for the razor, because you know that when you feel the cool metal slicing through your skin, when you feel the sharp sting that makes you gasp for air, when you see the ruby red of your blood dripping slowly down your arm, you'll become numb. There will be nothing. Nothing is better than this biting despair.
You lie on your bedroom floor in darkness to match the colour of your soul. All you can hear is the sound of your heart beating, and you hate it. With each beat, all you hear is "pathetic, pathetic, pathetic". You want to rip it out of your own chest, you want to find some way to silence it forever, because this hurt you're feeling is just not worth it.
You sob with such force that your world shakes as the full weight of what you are feeling engulfs you like a brutal, unforgiving wave. You clutch at your sides as the tears flood down your face, as if there's someway to put yourself back together, as if you haven't already been broken beyond repair.
With every tear that falls, every heartbeat, every drop of blood, you are reminded of your weakness. It's a circle with no end and no beginning, and you can't escape. The only thing you understand is your worthlessness, your brokenness ...there becomes only one way out...
Then you notice it. The spark. It could be anything, a smile from a stranger, a hug from a friend, a laugh from a younger sibling... It might be as simple as a noise in your house, the ring of a telephone, the creak of a stair... but there is something that makes you notice the world, just for an instant.
That instant is all you need.
Without even realising it, you begin to drag yourself back to life. A second ago you had your mind set on giving up, and now, from a place you didn't know existed, you find the strength to sit up, put the razor down, wipe the tears away.
Nothing has changed, those emotions are still there... but somehow, somehow you're still breathing. You're still going.
Moments ago, you were dangling off a cliff, seconds away from giving offering yourself as a sacrifice to the abyss, but you dragged your way back up with your fingertips, and even though now you're bloody and bruised...you're still here.
You just clawed your way back from the pits of hell.
What were you saying about not being strong?