Another article of mine was published on The Mighty the other day! This one took a lot for me to submit – the thought of people reading it was terrifying, which I took as a sign that I had to do it.
I couldn’t tell you why, but it became abundantly clear at age 10 or 11 that I was “broken.” It was like something inside of me cracked and out came depression, seeping from my mouth, my eyes, my skin. So sudden and out of nowhere. And I didn’t have the words for what was wrong with me then, for what I was feeling – all I knew was that I wasn’t the same person.
I can’t remember for the life of me, and I’m not sure I even want to. I know I was far too fresh to be so cold, too young to feel so old, too innocent to be so broken – a child bombarded with mental illness. A child so angry not knowing why and as for life, I just wanted to forfeit.
For the life of me I can’t remember — when did I become so jaded? When did my life begin to end? How have I survived so long in this purgatory and can I ever really start living?
I don’t know who I am but I know this isn’t who I want to be.
I’m talking to you. Depression – my uncomfortable comfort zone, I don’t. want. you. Loosen your grip on me please, I think I have something to live for. I think I’m just a small part of something that’s been saving me and I think I could do something more, do something good out of what you’ve done to me. If I can keep going from the words of others, the knowledge that I am not alone, perhaps my words can be that for someone. I don’t want this to have all been for nothing.
Depression, you stole me way too young, way too early in life. I wasn’t given a fair chance but I am still here. I am. still. here. That has to mean something.
Because at 12 years old, just a child, not being able to imagine life beyond the next year — how. dare. you. How dare you throw your dark blanket over my fragile body, so heavy, that all dreams and possibilities started to fade in my preteen mind? How dare you numb this young heart and dull the memories. How dare you take up all of my time. And I know now that it’s not my fault but it’s my mind and my mind has been taken over by this illness — by you.
Depression. Where I once saw vibrant colors, now muted shadows and I tried so hard to see through it. I swear I tried to see the truth but depression, you are so good at making me the fool.
I’ve had enough. Far too long, I let you win. I let you control and take and take some more and time passed and now thanks to you I can’t remember how I even got here, but I am.
And I know. I know you are not something a pill or a combination of pills can make disappear for good. You are not something a brain surgeon can cut away, but I know I can live. I’ve been surviving, merely existing for over a decade, but this time I want to live. I will not let your false comfort smother me anymore.
Depression, you’re an uninvited illness in my mind but I can and will fight back this time. In my 23 years, I’ve just been existing but I swear I’m going to learn to live with you.
I’m done being ashamed of my mental state.