This

Is Averi Pottorff

In 2017 at the age of 17 she attempted to try and end her life by taking pills after 7 months of dealing with pain.

She survived and here she is ready to talk about her story.

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Can you talk about what those 7 months were like and what happened that pushed you to the edge?

When did you notice something was going on with you that wasn’t normal?

Okay so basically in August of 2016 I started feeling so depressed. It came out of no where. I was being irritable towards my family,not trying in school, and everyday I would come home from school and lock myself in the bathroom and sit there with a blank stare. I wasn’t sure what was wrong and thought I would get over it soon. December came and before break my friends & I had powderpuff practice ( girls are the football players & guys are the cheerleaders). I remember coming home from a practice and laying on my floor and sobbing. I grabbed my chest and just cried. I felt worthless and I couldn’t keep up with fake smiles around people. I wanted to die. I tried reaching out to my family, but they just assumed it was just normal teenage hormones and didn’t know the extent of it. January hit and everything was down hill. My grades were bad, I stopped taking care of myself.  I felt heavy and numb. Every. Single. Day.  My friends & family had NO idea what was going on. Around this time, I really seriously started to think about dying. I had always had thoughts of it during the whole time but around February I would grab all my pills and hold them in my hand in my bathroom and sit on the floor. I would cry because I wanted to take all of them but at the same time I couldn’t do it. I would be so angry and punch the wall out of anger because I was so mad at myself for feeling this way. I looked in the mirror and felt so much anger that my own mind was causing me so much pain. On March 27th 2017 I sat in my math class at school. Just with a blank stare, I had let everything go. I felt like a failure, I was going to fail school, and I didn’t have anyone to turn to. I got up and went to the nurse and lied and said I threw up so I could go home. The whole car ride I was hysterically crying. I got home and grabbed pictures and paper and locked myself in the bathroom. I texted my family that I loved them. They just thought I was saying it just because. I FaceTimed my two friends. It was just a normal convo to them, but it was a goodbye for me. I sat on my bathroom floor from 1-6pm I wrote letters and separated pictures to leave behind to the people I wrote to. I stood up and looked in the mirror and I had my pills in my hand. I took one, and then three, and then I took all the rest of them.

What happened next? 

Do you really remember? 

You’re here today, alive. 

Thank God. Did someone find you on the floor?

My mom found me. i was taken to the hospital and they took everything away from me. I remember feeling my body BURNING. it was such a bad pain. My heart monitor was beeping like crazy and a ton of nurses/ doctor came in. They grabbed both arms and shoved IV’s into them. I remember looking at a nurse and telling her “ I’m going to die right now. I’m going to feel myself die.” And she looked at me and said “ I promise you that I wont let you die. You are not going to die.” I had to drink a ton of charcoal to counteract the medication. II was attached to a heart monitor and I had an IV just pushing fluids through me. Every time someone came in my monitor would go off, the medication made my heart rate SO high and that was the main concern.  My whole body just cramped all night long. I had an officer sitting outside my room watching me. It was the longest night of my life. But also I had all night to think. My family was there and they were heart broken and felt so so bad. I felt a lot of love that night.

They had released me into my fathers care the next day after asking some questions.

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But I’m so so grateful I lived! 

I’m glad you were able to feel something that night, being that you felt loved. Because you are Averi. So much. 

... what a day that was.

It could’ve ended with the worst case scenario. It didn’t. Thankful  you lived. And thankful that here to be able to share your story like this for anyone to read. I admire you’re bravery.

How have things been since that year? You been alright? 

I’ve been doing great. I decided when I was laying in that hospital bed that I could either sit and feel bad for myself or kick this in the ass and go on with my life. I took the steps medically to get better.( therapy & medication) and I ended up graduating high school a year early and moving to Utah! I’m on my 3 (almost 4th) semester of college and I am so happy and content with my life. I really truly am.

I have medication that works, a support system, and most importantly I learned coping skills! 

That’s amazing! I’m happy that things have been able to turnaround for you. You’ve could’ve sat there and taken the blows. But instead you moved. You continued. You pushed and fought back. And look what happened. You learned to cope. You ended up finishing high school and went off to college! That’s inspiring. 

Oh and I’m glad you had a very supportive team behind you through it all. 

So last question, what would you say to anybody who sees a bit of themselves in your story? Anything you’d like to say?

It won’t always last.

That pain you feel won’t last forever.

I know that it feels like it’s just taking over and that there is no end but I PROMISE you there is. Fight back and kick ass every day even on the days where it’s harder to get out of bed, go to school, work, etc. ASK for help. There are people who are willing to help you. Just sit them down and have a serious conversation about how you feel. There are resources out there to help take that empty feeling away. 

You aren’t a burden.

Just ask for help and you will receive it!

Q&A By Tony Cox

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