Slip Sliding Away

This is gonna be a bit embarrassing, and I’m gonna feel a fair bit of shame in posting this blog; but those very-same reasons of embarrassment and shame are why I need to go through with this posting.

Last night I did something I’d never done, by calling a suicide crisis hotline. I wasn’t planning any harm to myself, but I was very clearly and definitely gaining ground in that scary direction. (The past two days at work had been brutal and crazy-making, and I wasn’t recovering.) In typical Ed fashion, I put-off calling, and was hesitant about following through when I did finally make the call. In fact, when the counselor answered, I immediately began apologizing, saying I wasn’t sure the reason I was calling was a proper and intended reason to be calling. Well, if it wasn’t he never said so, didn’t hang-up on me. Instead, as these things are meant to happen, when our conversation ended, some twenty minutes later, I was feeling sturdier and stronger, as though a weight had been removed from my chest.

Now, I wouldn’t be bringing this up if this were an isolated, singular incident; but it isn’t. Just a month ago, I was stuck flat-on-my-back in my Telluride hotel bed, slipping down the chute that leads to suicide. Once again, I had to fight a LOT of inertia and vulnerable pride to email my sister, and also a friend who lives in the suburbs of Telluride, telling them of my plight. I’ve been raised hard-fast and hard-wired to not be any kind of burden to anyone. I’ve been thoroughly taught to, “stay out of the way.” And, hey, I’m a southern man. I either suck it up, walk it off, or cowboy up—I certainly don’t give any notice of being anything other than full-bore, gun-ho, able-bodied, and ready.

As these things happen, my friend and I had already scheduled to meet for a short walk, the very next morning; and my sister, two states away, emailed me, encouraging me to hang in there; and she called me the next evening.

I still have three more shifts at work, this week. I’m currently not feeling as sturdy and strong this morning as when I went to bed. Therefore, my fight to stay in the light isn’t over. But, too, the darkness has yet to fully overcome the light. And I have allies; I’m not alone in this fight.


By the way, here’s the crisis line number, always there, 24/7, whatever the reason—if you feel you might want to, that’s reason enough to call ’em: (719) 539-6502.



Filed under Fighting Toward the Light, Not Alone, Sorting It Out, Suicide

13 responses to “Slip Sliding Away

  1. kit hedman

    You’re ok. Keep writing.

    • I don’t know whether i’m actually “ok” just yet, Kit (but I have been wrong about these sorts of things), but I do believe I am getting closer and closer. And I am still writing.

  2. Jim Bedford

    A flat tire is never terminal. You just get pissed off, get it fixed and move on. There’ll be another one, but fix that too and get on with it. It’s always better after you fix them.

  3. This is bit more and “other” than a flat tire, Jim. But I think maybe I do get your message’s intent of persisting amid the “flat tires” of life. And, for sure, four full tires beats rolling on less than that.

  4. Kudos for making the call… It’s not an easy thing to do. Here’s another option that I used a few weeks ago:

    • While I’m not a “texter,” Whoa, Nelly, is this a helluva resource, across several boards! Thank you, hugely, for the link.

      • You don’t have to be a texter. These are all options that exist for all situations (say you’re in a bus or train or can’t speak loud or are deaf). The important thing is to reach out, right? Let’s keep doing it.

  5. gomimigo

    As a stranger in life but connected through poetry, your courage to speak is admired. This is a meaningfully written pronouncement of your challenges and your willingness to take hold of the reins. Bravo for stepping forward and for writing with great clarity and grace. I hope you continue to write such personal prose and more importantly heal.

    • Thank you, for you comment and encouragement. I am increasingly turning the corner back to myself. And I’ve just discovered several additional resources that I didn’t know were available. So, there’s still more “better” ahead.

  6. Mary Reeves

    Ed, when you said you were taking a break from FB, I should have known and called – but then, I find, I don’t have your number. So, here’s mine, and call anytime. ***-***-****

    • (I’ve blocked out your phone number, after writing it down, so it’s not “out there” for everybody to have access to.) There’s tons of “non-lethal” reasons, Dr Mary, for somebody to take a break from FB; so go easy on yourself for not jumping immediately to call or get in touch with me.

      Thank you, for giving me your number, I’ll FB message you mine. And thank you for being there when I went through a very similar time two(?) years ago. I’m currently very much on the mend, and have discovered/realized several other avenues for current and future mendings at my disposal.

  7. Hey friend, here’s from Rilke: You darkness, that I come from, I love you more than all the fires that fence in the world. For the fire makes a circle of light for everyone, but then no one outside learns of you. But the darkness pulls in everything: shapes and fires, animals and myself. How easily it gathers them, powers and people. And it is possible a great energy is moving near me. I have faith in night.” Ever a journey in this darkness and light. I wonder if you, like Rilke, have a feeling that there is a great energy moving near you? I wonder how he found his faith in night? Perhaps by repeatedly traveling in the darkness. I do not take these metaphors lightly. You are journeying in powerful regions, bringing news of them back with you. You are the very finest Eduardo Brummel there is, exactly as you are, that is exactly as you are made to be. Hugs to you, friend,

    • Yes, Rosemerry, a very powerful energy—but a life-taking one, rather than life-giving. This isn’t a nurturing, balancing with life darkness I’m being assailed by—it is a horrid, evil thing. Not a Destroyer in the Kali sense, but of the splitting of atoms and neutrons. The only news I can think to bring is that this darkness is real and it means real business. It plays for forever-keeps.

      I posted a Thank you blog, earlier today, and only just a few minutes ago, was able to get a FB link to it. Since that posting, things have once again gone badly south for me. Once again, I am scared for my life, and scared that this keeps happening. If the Powers That Be owe you any favors, or are willing to grant you any boons, I’d really appreciate and need any good words you could put in for me with them.

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