Depression Yesterday. Depression Today.

Yesterday, I wanted to kill myself.

You see, I was diagnosed with severe depression in 2009. I’ve tried so many different medications, my wife and I lost count. It wasn’t until 2012, after five failed suicide attempts and a near-death car accident, when I finally told my wife about the reality of my brain.

Each suicidal thought that creeps into my brain makes me want to just end it all. “Anywhere else has got to be better than living in this hell,” my brain tells me. “My family doesn’t deserve this. They will be so much happier if I am just gone.

Lies.

Each time I tried to kill myself, at the very last minute before I would take my last breath on this earth, I would get a vision. I always saw my boys; I am father to two young sons. Most of the time, they waved goodbye from a window as tears streaked their faces.

And that would do it.

I pressed the button on the garage door to let fresh air flow in and I gasped as the poison I had just put in my lungs began to leave me. I ripped the bag off my head just before I ran out of oxygen. I put the gun down and slammed my fists on the floor so hard my hands bruised.

But I won. In those moments, I won.

I finally told my wife about the true terror of my suicidal thoughts in a suicide note one night as she slept in September of 2012. That night was going to be the end of me on this earth. I planned how I would hang myself in our garage, just behind our back yard where our boys play with our dogs. I told my wife not to come find me, that I didn’t want her to see me that way.

I won again that night. As I typed the suicide note, I felt a demon inside of me release. I learned the power of honesty.

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I just passed another year with my family. Welcome to 2016. I still have depression. I take my medication every day. I surround myself with other believers, people who are willing to admit we need each other. We are God’s army; we in all our sinful human nature are here on this earth to support each other, to love each other, to help each other understand God is good all the time no matter our circumstances. I am not strong enough to battle this demon without support.

I learned God has not forgotten me. He has been preparing me for war.

My wife and I can laugh, most days, about the reality of my suicidal thoughts. We understand now that God was beside me every time I wanted to end my life, and He was desperately trying to get my attention. I imagine Him holding my head and placing images of my sons in my mind. I imagine Him telling my grandmother to go check on me just before she knocked on our door and caused me to pull the bag off my head. I imagine Him holding the hands of the pharmacists, scientists, and doctors as they created and prescribed medications to help me with my chemical imbalance.

So the truth we have learned to embrace is the humor even in mental illness. Finding good in this evil is our way of telling Satan to go to hell and stay there.

So either I completely suck at trying to kill myself, or God has a much greater purpose for my pain. It may be both. But either way, I refuse to live my life allowing Satan to win. 

So yesterday. Yesterday, I began having suicidal thoughts. I felt defeated. “Son of a bitch,” I thought. “They’re back. They were gone and now they’re back. Will this ever end? Will this ever go away completely? It had been so long since I felt this defeated. I had hope this would never happen. Now that hope is gone. I need to be gone. I need to end this. My family doesn’t deserve this.”

More lies.

So now came the hard part. For a few hours, I said nothing. I was quiet, empty. I had no hope. And then it happened, the first of God’s attempts to snap me back to His reality. My wife looked at me and said, “You’re quiet today. Are you okay?”

Before I would ignore it. I would have said I’m okay and I would have gone on to fight this beast within myself alone. I’m strong enough, right?

Wrong.

I made a choice. “I’m quiet because I haven’t been feeling well.”

“Suicidal thoughts?” She questioned.

I made another choice. “Yes.”

Did the suicidal thoughts immediately stop? No. But now I didn’t have to fight them alone. We’ve been through this before. Bailey knows what to ask. Did I have a plan for my death? No. Were the thoughts overwhelming or fleeting? Fleeting. Did I feel like there was any hope? No. Did I feel like I had been locked in a battle? Yes.

Who was going to win this battle this time? God.

When we went to bed together last night, we prayed as we always do. But our prayers this time did not center around fix me, make me better. Don’t get me wrong, we pray for that too. But I had just worked my way through a battle between good and evil in my own brain, and I did it with much greater success than I ever have. Now, our prayers center around allowing God to use us to help you. “Use this pain for Your good, Father. Help us reach others through our experiences and give them hope.”

I have information others need to know. I have a plan for defeating this demon of depression that lives inside so many. I can help those suffering from suicidal thoughts to understand there is hope, and you can win. How can I do this? Because I live this reality and I know life is worth living. I know God is here with us.

And this morning, my wife, the talented writer, woke up feeling inspired. Our prayer is being answered as you read. Will this post save lives? Will this post, this positive message of true healing, go viral over the negative posts that so often surround us on social media? Will this post be there to save lives of those who believe there is no hope? We believe in our message, our mission. We share our truth because you are loved.

Yesterday, I wanted to kill myself. Today, I live as an example that life does go on, that life is worth fighting for, and that God did not forget you. He has placed good everywhere in our lives. See Him.

I won again yesterday. I won because I have learned how to ask for help. My God, my wife, my sons, my medication, my family, my friends, my doctors, my church family, my counselor…the list goes on and on. There are so many who are willing to help. I know I am never alone.

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Our book, our very personal story, was published in May of 2015. It is there for the world. What do we have to hide? Nothing if it helps save lives. Link to purchase either the paperback or eBook at www.jeremyandbailey.com.

So today depression is there, but it did not win yesterday. Will my suicidal thoughts come back? They very well may. But they will not win. I know how to fight my illness. I know how to ask for help. I know how to live even when my brain tells me there is no hope. There is always hope.

Today, I don’t want to kill myself. Today, I celebrate another triumph. Today, I ask you to take a stand for the reality of depression with me. Today, we win because God has a plan, a mission if you will. I know my mission, and I will take the evil Satan intended to destroy me with and I will allow God to use it for His good.

“You intended to harm me, but God intended it all for good. He brought me to this position so I could save the lives of many people.” Genesis 50:20

Today, I am alive with my family for another day. Today, depression lost.

~ Jeremy & Bailey Koch

25 thoughts on “Depression Yesterday. Depression Today.

  1. I enjoy so much reading your posts. My daughter has severe depression and anxiety, also been diagnosed bi-polar. She is on meds, but also tried to self medicated herself with Meth. Big problems there. You give me hope, God Is Good!!!!! Please keep her in your prayers, her name is Dixie. Thank-you, Kerri

    • Dixie has been in our prayers, Kerri. Thank you so much for your continued support. It means the world. God bless you all.

  2. Thank you for sharing your story! My husband was hit with this horrible disease this last year, but through your stories, our family and friends have a better insight into the reality of the pain. We hate to hear of others who suffer, but glad to know we do not walk this road alone. In the end we have the assurance that Christ reigns and is truely victorious over all!!

  3. I have suffered with bipolar my whole life. At 29 the things I used to self medicate quit working. After many attempts to end my life and years of trying to find the correct medication, they finally did. It worked for 7 years. I can tell when my medication quits working, as I start craving alcohol. It took them another 5 years to find the correct combination, but luckily, other than the drinking I had learned how to deal with the suicidal ideations and didn’t end up back in a psych hospital. I only have to take one pill, twice a day now, I still fear that it will quit working like the first one did, but for today I am sober and stable. At least you have someone who is there for you. Even having a family full of those who suffer from bipolar disorder, my family still isn’t supportive nor do they get it. I do have a support system set up. It will be a lifetime of struggle for both of us, keep working with your support system. Life can be good again.

    • It’s all about accepting and learning how to handle it. Perhaps look into SPECT imaging. Jeremy had scans and they looked at his brain and prescribed based upon actually looking at the organ. Depression is very real, and seeing it helped so much. God bless you. We are so glad you are doing well.

  4. Pingback: Depression Yesterday. Depression Today. | beingremade95

  5. I was wondering if you had ever been tested for MTHFR (A1298C)? I have inherited two copies of the gene, one from dad and one from mom. It is a mix up in the methylation pathway for Folate and causes many, mental problems with anxiety, bi-polar, ADHD, ADD, alcoholism and disorganization being but a few. It’s an easy blood test to take. If you test positive I suggest that you read up on your condition. I have it and have had anxiety, alcohol problems and suicidal thoughts all of my life. I know what is actually going on in my body now and I am much better.

    • We have not ever heard of that, but it is definitely worth looking into. Thank you for the help! We traveled to California in March of 2015 and Jeremy underwent a brain scan. It was such a blessing to see exactly where the depression comes from and be able to make adjustments from looking at the actual organ. So empowering. And life has drastically improved since then…so much. Understanding the truth is key. Depression is real.

    • Being religious is very different than having a relationship with God. Many know the Bible and don’t know Christ. I’m glad you found our mission to help you know you are not alone. Sounds like someone is trying to get your attention.

  6. My granddaughter is severely depressed but is refusing to take any medication or go to counseling. I know both would help her but she is an adult and all I can do is suggest it, love her and pray.

    • Colleen, feel free to share our story and our facebook page and anything else you can with her. My husband takes his medication regularly because he has learned what life is like when he refuses. It’s not living. Life is worth learning how to live, not just stay alive. I pray your granddaughter learns she is worth fighting for, and that’s what the right medication can help with. For now, see if she would be willing to take some supplements. If she is afraid of medication, I get it. We have had many issues over the years, but have found the right combination and suicidal thoughts are extremely rare now, only brought on my lack of sleep or medication oops. The supplements most helpful for brain health are Omega-3, SAM-e, and Phosphatidyl Serine. Of course we are not doctors, but this is what we have learned from our brain specialists through the years.

    • Hi Andy. I’m sorry you’re going through that. Sometimes being the support person is just as difficult as being the person with the mental illness. Share our post and our site with her. It’s so important for her to understand she is not alone. The first step toward healing is being able to be open with someone…anyone. A counselor is an extremely important aspect of the journey to mental health. Step one is learn to be okay talking about it. A counselor would be able to tell her if medication may help, then you can do a referral to a psychiatrist from there. But I will also say, if she is suffering from terrible suicidal thoughts and you are worried for her safety, run, don’t walk, to the nearest inpatient facility. While it is not a fun place to be in, it begins a journey to mental health. It’s about looking beyond the stigma and understanding the people in these facilities do the best they can to help people LIVE, not just stay alive. It’s a balance. But get her to see you care. Get her to understand she is not alone. God bless.

  7. You are so much the example of what I was writing about in “What Does Depression Look Like.” When we open up and talk to someone, we make the mountain become the ant hill. The more we open up to others, the lesser the problem seems to be because we are sharing our inner self, our pain. The person who bears the burden alone is more likely to commit suicide than the person who is honest with others because the mask hides the need for help, but honesty allows the needed help to be given. God bless you for opening yourself to those you love. I will pray for you.

    • So true. Thank you, Elaine, for sharing. Being open and honest is the best defense we have, and that truth came straight from God! We know this is what He wants from us!

  8. Pingback: Cozad, NE Mental Health Support Group “Anchoring Hope” Officially Began | Jeremy and Bailey

  9. I so wish my sister-in-law would have found something to stop her from taking her life this past June. She had an amazing husband and three precious young children. Our lives will never be the same. I’m glad you continue to win your battles. You think your family will be better off without you, but they absolutely are not. I can attest to this.

    • We are so very sorry for your loss. Please know, and help her husband and children understand, that the reality of suicidal thoughts is flipped from a healthy brain’s reality. The “depression brain” as we call it, tells the person suffering that the loved ones do not deserve to live this life, that they are so burdened by the person that it is better if she were just gone. It’s so hard for the rest of us to understand. Often, the world sees it as a selfish act. It is anything but. Your sister-in-law likely believed with all her being that the rest of you are better off without her, she likely thought of all of you as her brain lied to her. Some are called home far sooner than we are ready for. God is good all the time, and she is safe and whole again with Him. We will keep you all in our prayers. God bless.

  10. Wow, received your post on facebook just a bit ago and I just thank the Divine intervention that brought it to me. I could have written it myself, talking about me. Tho no suicide attempts in an auto, the desire was still there. In the quiet of the night, I plan to read this entire article, no skim it as I have just done. I cried during my skimming that there are others out there that REALLY understand what I am going thru. Thank you for being here for me and the others with this “thing”

    • We are so very thankful God is using us to help you understand you are not alone. Depression is real and can be terrifying. Accept help and know we are all in this together. Keep fighting!

  11. Pingback: I Wanted to Kill Myself. I didn’t. | Her View From Home

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