It’s a peculiar thing, depression — the way it ebbs and flows. There was a period of time not so long ago that I had convinced myself that I had tamed the demon, cornered it, caged it. I don’t think that belief was foolishness or arrogance, it was true at the time. Trouble is, depression is patient and wily and it’s likely hitched a ride on my back for as long as I shall exist.
I’m in a funk the likes of which I haven’t experienced in fifteen years and in some ways this bout is worse, much worse. Yes, I’ve created and adapted strategies in that time to better combat the darkness inside of me but with that wisdom so too comes weariness.
I do not possess the youthful exuberance I once did. I cannot bounce back as easily or as agilely as I once was able. I also have responsibilities now and no longer possess the luxury of dropping out of sight for a spell. I am a father to a boy who knows nothing of the shadow that chases me and I hope he never does.
Try as I might to put on a brave face and soldier onward, those around me can see that something is off.
I haven’t shaved in over a week.
I am almost always tired.
It’s said that I look sad by friends and strangers alike.
I often find myself romanticizing the past, wishing I could go back. It’s funny, because as a child, as a teenager, and even as a young adult I did little else but dream of a future, a future that was bright. I envision that future less and less now, stuck as I am in the suffocating minutia of daily life with depression as a constant companion.
It reminds me of something said by Sally Jupiter in The Watchman:
“Everyday the future looks a little bit darker. But the past, even the grimy parts of it, well, it just keeps getting brighter all the time.”
Sleep used to be a respite from the depression but lately even my dreams have turned against me, transforming from vivid curiosities to an unrelenting, subconscious nightmare. I am offered no reprieve from the pain and I have begun to wonder if the wonder drugs aren’t simply acting as accelerant for the vibrant hellscape in my head.
It’s difficult to find hope these days and yet here I am typing away, documenting this — praying that through it I find some catharsis, some refuge, some hope.
I am a desperate man in a desperate time, forever searching for salvation.