In My Feelings

I don't suppose I've really talked very much about my feelings around J's suicide since it happened 7 months ago. Not here, anyway. I've had some really cerebral discussions around it with new people in my life who, one way or another, find out about it. Sitting at a table full of counselors, as I frequently find myself doing these days, will make you assess your feelings on the matter, as well. But on the whole, even then, I think I've been pretty good (too good probably) at having an abstract conversation about my feelings.

I mean the reality of it is this isn't my first rodeo. I dealt with suicide in high school. Not to suggest that makes it easier, but the last 7 yrs have been lesson after lesson on what it's like to be a survivor of suicide (just learned that I'm a 2-time survivor of suicide... interesting...). So dealing with the after effects of this is... well it's different for me this time and I feel like I almost have to deal with it cerebrally instead of all down in my feelings because... well... I did that once already.

I don't believe I'm making sense on that part, so let me get to why I'm thinking about all this.

The reality of counseling -- being in a counseling program, learning to counsel people, always thinking about best practices -- is preparation for the worst case scenario and for us, I think especially school counselors, suicide is the worst case scenario. Even moreso than child abuse, a student coming into your office and expressing that they are thinking of suicide as a way out is. absolutely. petrifying.

So it was quite the treat (ironic choice of words, probably) to have a professional counselor come talk to us about the nuts and bolts of what you do when someone expresses they have thought about and are seriously considering suicide. I mean what do you do after they say that? And this isn't my first time in this rodeo, either. I've had people come talk to us about suicide, what the warning signs are, who's at most risk, what the after effects can be, etc... this time was different though. I was really all down in my feelings. I tried and I tried and I tried to surface and take notes and be professional and think about this from any angle other than my own "what could I have done differently..." place that I go to sometimes.

Confession Station: Yes. Sometimes, despite my best efforts and the fact that I know better and I know otherwise, I ponder the consequences of not responding to J's random text apologizing, one last time, for all he put me through. Why couldn't I have just gotten over myself and called him, as I had a half a mind to do, and pick his brain on where that was coming from? Might that not have changed things?

Of course not. I know that, y'all know that, we know it together but it's still true, despite this I go there and Thursday afternoon I was there, brought my lunch and camped all the way out. A couple of times during the presentation I thought about stepping out of the room. Wasn't sure if I was about to cry or spaz or what. I've got all kinds of techniques to use around "not feeling" and none of them were working. It was the absolute oddest thing I've ever had happened.

I suppose I need to bring it up in my own counseling session on Tuesday, huh? Yeah. I should. This needs to be handled.

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