TRIGGER WARNING: DEPRESSION & SELF-HARMING
Losing a family member is never particularly easy, and everyone deals with loss in their own way. His watched how destructive his mother, Meghan's death was to each and every one of their siblings. As far as Amari, he definitely was starting to go down to a path of destruction. Granted, he talked about his death with his brother James, but it was never truly the same as coping with it. Depression and Addiction is hardly ever talked about in black families, or those going through it definitely try to avoid their loved ones so they can continue their destructive ways.
Amari was very close to his mother, and she was someone that he would go to for advice about women mostly. Granted he had his father, but he knew a women's perspective was always the best thing; at least it was from his standpoint. He tried to keep his head up for the sake of his younger siblings, but honestly, it was hard to keep his head above water. As it set in reality, that she wasn't just going to walk through that door anymore. Amari started to fall into a deep depression, and it caused more problems then anyone would have realized. On the outside, he would always put on a brave face like he was dealing with it his mother's loss. Like he could probably process everything that was going on, but he couldn't. He was going to fake it until he could make it.
Withdrawing himself from the outside world, he started to spend more and more time in his room. He thought maybe this would help. Not being surrounded by those that looked most like his mother would help, but it only made it worse. The thoughts continued to cloud his mind, and it made him dive deeper within himself to find happiness; to be able to cope with the loss of his mother. For days, weeks at a time he would be bedridden. He didn't want to shower, he didn't want to eat, and honestly, he just didn't want to be around anymore. The family was dealing with his sister's in and out habit that she had developed, that he didn't think he mattered to them anymore. He felt like he was a burden to his family, and he didn't want that. He didn't want to be like his sister, Arianne. He didn't want to be someone else's problem. Amari wanted hope. He wanted happiness. He just wanted to be okay with life.
"My scars show all my suffering and pain but they also show that I had the will to survive."
The depression was beginning to become too much for him. Amari didn't know what to do. He didn't know how to deal with this. He had just come home to find that he was home alone. He wasn't sure where his family was at, and he wasn't' going to bother trying to find them either. More than likely, they might have been trying to talk Arianne off a ledge, but who was to stay. Today had been long, and it only seemed longer when he stepped foot in the house that he shared with his father and his brothers and sister. Each time that he was home, he realized that he wasn't going to hear the laughter or her voice anymore. It had been almost a year since his mother was gone, but his brain couldn't handle it. Amari would often find himself thinking that he had seen her ghost, or had heard her voice when he was held up in his room.
Amari had come home and walked straight to his room. He had no appetite to eat anything, but he wanted to be alone. He searched through his room and came around a sharp razor that he had put away a while ago. He sat it down on his dresser and stared down at it. It called out to him. Begging him to pick it up; begging him to release the pain and the stress that he had been feeling for the past year or so. Maybe this was the answer to his pain. Maybe Aj could finally find some relief from everything that he been clouding his mind. "You're stronger than this." he muttered to himself through the mirror. He was more trying to convince himself more than he actually believed those words. "No. No, I'm not." he stated as he grabbed the razor. He unbuckled his jeans, and slid them down his legs. They fell down to his ankles, and he sat down on the bed that was behind him. Amari placed the razor against his skin and dragged it down with pressure as he closed his eyes. He could feel the relief of the pain releasing from him. He could feel the blood trickling down his brown skin, but it didn't bother him. He was just happy that he felt some type of relief from the pain and the loss; little did he know that this would become a very self-destructive habit
The cycle that was his depression was crippling him. He had finished school, barely, and his self-harming habit was only getting worse. He was starting to run out of room on his thighs, and he was tired of asking questions about why he had been so withdrawn. He had a feeling that his family knew why, but he was still faking it until he could make it. As the cycle continued, his cutting became worse to the point where he was cutting himself on the inside of his arms. He had lost room on his legs, and he needed a new place to fully be able to relieve himself of his pain. Time seemed to be moving so slowly, but it was moving a lot faster than he wanted to admit. It had been a year and half since his mother had passed away. Amari was still dealing with his depression, and he knew he needed help. His vanity was stopping him. He didn't want his family and friends to think that he was less than because he needed someone to help him sort out his feelings and what he was going through.
The anniversary of his mother's death was coming around, and it triggers his episodes. Makes his depression worse on some days than others. Often Aj tried not to think of it, but it was hard because the family would go and visit her grave. He forced himself to go because they would have wanted to know why. He had been keeping silent so long about this, that it was just becoming second nature to hide it. It wasn't until one morning after he had visited his mother's grave that he thought that he was home alone. He had taken out the razor, and began to make the small cuts across the inside of his forearm when he heard the door opening it. AJ looked up surprised to find his older bother, James there staring at him in horror and shock. That was when he couldn't hold it in any longer, he just broke down. The emotions took over and he just broke down right there in the middle of his floor.
His brother had wanted to get him help, and of course he protested. Saying that he could deal with this on his own, but in the end he just eventually gave him. He knew once he started going to therapy for the depression and the cutting that he would have to tell his family. That was the hardest part, was the look on their faces when he had told them. This was the beginning of a new start for him. Amari wanted to make it out alive this time.
light at the end of the tunnel
While depression never fully goes away, it became manageable for him. Therapy and the medicine that he takes definitely helps him when he feels himself slowly slipping back into that dark places. Most times they're triggered by memories of his mother, each time he looks back into the mirror and down at his slowly fading scars, but he's getting there. Time heals, but it's a slow uphill battle. In light of him finding the light at the end of the tunnel, he decided that he would attend college. He wasn't a smart kid, but he just never put his brain to use much after his mother died. He attended Texas A & M University and majored in Forensic & Investigative Sciences with a minor in Biochemistry & Biophysics. After he graduated with his Bachelor's of Science he decided to attend graduated school and received his master's in Biochem & Biophysics.
Upon graduation and obtaining his master's degree, he applied to be apart of the Houston Police Department Forensic Specialist team. He was denied the first time, but then later reapplied and much to his relief they accepted him. Most of his family had moved to Ashwick Valley by that time, and he was still in Houston. He would often go and visit his family during the holiday's, but at the time he was still knew on his job and he didn't want to just up and leave without a certain future here for himself in California. Over the next four years he had went back and forth from Ashwick to Houston to visit his family, and he was also looking for a job here as well. If he moved, he wanted to make sure that he would be able to financially support himself and enjoy the space that he worked in.
Summer of 2012 he was accepted to work with Ashwick Valley Police Department as a forensic scientist. Amari made his journey down to California that following August of the same year. He gave himself a month to get all his affairs in order as well as some living arrangements. He didn't want to come down, and be living with his siblings while he down here. He needed his own space for a lot of different reasons.
Once he had moved, he was beginning to realize the many reasons why he didn't want to come. Everything that glitter's ain't gold, right? Emotionally Amari wasn't ready for relationships, and honestly he wasn't really the one to actually be faithful
when your girlfriend was in any entire different city. However, Valerie Carmichael was one of those women that intimidated him, but drew him in at the same time. He loved the aura about her, and the way that her presence demanded the attention of those around her.
It definitely caught Aj attention, but it was only a matter of time before his focus was on someone else. Someone that was much closer to him. Temptation was never really his friend, and he fell for it each time something was presented in front of him. It was like something shiny that he had to have his fingers on. Could he really count how many times that he stepped out on Valerie? No. Did he ever admit it to her? He didn't. Instead, he told her that the distance between them wasn't working. That was partially the truth, but Amari knew that Valerie probably suspected that he did the worst. He just couldn't hurt her anymore than he had already done by breaking up with her.
The year and half that he spent away from her and Ashwick, he had blocked her on all the social media sites as well as blocked her number. It was a coward move, but it was what it was to be honest. He was just going to deal with it the best way that he could. Amari was calling that his clean break from her, but he knew that once he had moved down to Ashwick that it would be only a matter to of time before he would fun into her. Hopefully he will be able to avoid that and keep his depression at bay. He would rather not have to go through the same cycle that he had done back at home to his new home. Amari was deathly afraid of falling back into the deep rabbit hole that he had fallen into. He wants Ashwick to be full of happy moments to cherish, and not a dark cloud of unhappiness.