It’s been a long time since I felt able to write anything, things have been especially dark. At one point I found myself ready to give in to the demons. Literally seconds away from ending it all, escaping the darkness forever. I had always thought that if/when that time came, I would be scared, but I wasn’t. I finally felt in control and calm.
Obviously I’m still here, so what kept me from freeing myself from this? I was reminded of the blog I wrote about suicide (16), and the effect it has on those left behind. The thought that those I love and care about might start struggling with their own darkness because of my actions pulled me back from the edge. I battle through every single day, every minute sometimes is hell. I fight the urge to hurt myself, the urge to run away, the urge to lock myself in a room and never come out. The physical pain that accompanies the mental torture is as exhausting and difficult to deal with as the demons themselves. I was – am – desperate for this fight to end, but this darkness is mine, and mine alone.
So today I find myself trying to keep holding on. Some days are easier than others, but I’m doing the best I can to continue to push forward. The pills have kicked in and although they’re clearly not making everything better, I no longer find myself crying over everything. Equally though they stop me from feeling happy. Which is ironic really, given that they’re known as “happy pills”. I can’t remember the last time I laughed and actually meant it. The smile remains forced and the effort to be sociable is more often than not too much.
I’m making sure I get up out of bed every day, even on the days when I’ve not slept at all and the darkness is preventing me from seeing any hint of light. I shower and get dressed, even if a duvet day on the sofa would be easier. I’m making sure I eat three meals a day, even when the nausea is intense or I’m too exhausted to normally bother. I’m attempting to force myself out of the front door for a walk every day, that’s not always happening, sometimes the demon’s shouts of the world being too scary win and I stay safely within my four walls, but I am trying to get myself out the front door.
I’ve also deleted all the negative comments / messages / texts I’ve received since I started being open about my depression. Most of them were from people I trusted, and thought of as friends, and they hurt me deeply. I don’t know why I had kept hold of them, I guess because my darkness feeds on negativity and so I believed all the awful things that were said about me. I’ve had so many lovely, supportive and friendly messages but I automatically dismiss them, my demons preventing me from believing anything nice. By holding onto the negative messages I think I was also holding onto friendships that I didn’t want to end, but I can see now that I don’t need those people in my life. It makes me sad but there’s a huge difference between not understanding mental illness, and not wanting to understand it. Those who make the choice to not understand it cannot be a part of my life moving forward. Those who are open to try and get it, even if they can’t/don’t, are those I need around me as I try to fight my way out of this cloud.
Finally, I have – with the help of the Husband – attempted to make plans for the future, things to aim for, fun family times that hopefully will allow me to find my smile again. We’ve got a trip to the local theatre planned (crowds, small space, no easy escape….. I can feel the panic rising already), and a trip to Scotland booked to celebrate our 10th wedding anniversary in the New Year. Some days it’s all about making it through that day, others it’s about having something to look forward to. I’m hoping we’ve found a balance that will work. I need to be challenged, to be forced into situations that I’m not comfortable with, that scare me – the theatre being one of those. It’s the only way to find that light again, to fight against everything the demons are telling me I shouldn’t do.
I’m a work in progress, there are ok days and bad days. I am hopeful that in weeks to come I may feel able to be more sociable and try to at least return texts and calls which sometimes I just can’t respond to. I miss my friends, I wish so much to have the strength to see them, to share a cuppa and enjoy their company again.
In the meantime, Christmas is coming up and that’s a whole different challenge to get through.
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