On Depression

Depression is so evil. It grips you by the throat until swallowing and even breathing become laborious and challenging. It skews your reality so that you forget how to simply be. So that every movement takes extra thought and care. And it makes you wish for an escape from everything. Sleep until you never wake up. But wake up feeling sick, stomach knotted painfully, head pounding.

But the nastiest thing about a life with depression is the knowledge that you most likely won’t die this time either. That you will have to go on living and that the trail of destruction that episode has left behind will follow you back there.

So here you are, stuck in the middle of a massive depressive episode, irrational thoughts crowding out any sense or logic, and just occasionally you remember that life on the other side can be fun. That you can smile and laugh and see good things ahead. And that you can put a bit of effort in to build up to that point. And then depression hits and all that hard work goes out the window. And you come out the other side having to rebuild everything.

Yet despite knowing this in my sane moments, I don’t actually have any idea how to get back to that place. I literally need someone to be my parent. To take my hand and lead me along the right path. To give me a hug, tell me I’ll get through and that they will hold me until I am.

But unless I work out how to tell someone this, to actually communicate how I’m feeling, then how can I expect anyone to ever be there to help me. I want to talk, I really do, but the words get stuck in my throat, just like the food going down it. And so I continue to hide it away. Suffering in silence and pretending as much as I can that everything’s just fine and dandy. And then going home and slicing my arms and legs open just to remind myself that it isn’t. Just to feel something real rather than the numbness of existence.

Someone please help me up. I can’t stand it down here.