Name: Jay Buchholz
Stay; Because Life Sounds Better With You In It.
Being vulnerable is scary as hell and I was originally not going to share my own story, but here goes.
My Stay; story starts in the spring of 2009 when I was sophomore in high school. I still remember that night and the following day as if it was yesterday. It was the first time I made an attempt. I woke up the next day and felt like shit, but went to school like everything was okay and normal. When I got home from school, my mom saw my arm and I fell to my knees into her arms begging her to take me to the hospital. The next week, I was in an intensive out patient program that lasted three months. I floated through the next decade, 2009-2018 pretty easily but it was at the tail end of 2018 that my life started to spiral dangerously low.
In 2018, I thought I had my life figured out. I had a great job, my own apartment, and I was engaged. Sounds pretty awesome. I felt like I was on top of the world, but that all changed in October 2018 when my mental health started to spiral downwards. Within a week, I was fired from my job and then my fiancée left me. Over the next several months, I struggled everyday to just find the motivation to get out of bed. I worked myself like crazy at my new job at Barnes and Noble just to distract myself from the state of my life. During the Spring of 2019, I made another attempt at my life after a night of heavy drinking and self harm. I went into work that day hung over and as I took my hoodie off, my manager caught a glimpse of my arms and pulled me into her office and basically 302’d me by forcing me to call my dad to have him to take me the hospital. I spent the night in the hospital that night and soon after, started another IOP and my mom flew in from California to stay with me. I thought everything was going good until I lost my apartment and then got kicked out of my dad’s house in May of 2019 which led to a huge falling out with my family because I was tired of the emotional manipulation and abuse.
Facing homelessness, my friend told me I could live with him and slowly my mental health started to improve as I started to work at Starbucks and finding Only Human, but I was still drinking every day to “knock the edge off” after work and I still wasn’t speaking to anyone in my life. Fast forward to this year when covid-19 hit, my best friend texted me and said “hey I think you should call your family to check on them” and to be honest, I didn’t want to but I did. When my parents answered the phone, I just remember falling to my knees and crying hysterically and telling them how much I loved them. Looking back and looking at everything that I’ve been through, I’m so glad that I’ve decided to Stay; and thank you Only Human for giving me a reason to Stay; because now I’m 45 days sober and clean of self harm.
If you’ve made it this far, please know that you are loved. Please know that it gets better. Please know that you are not alone. Stay; because life sounds better with you.