The Black Dog

Depression is different things to different people. This is what it is to me.

It’s the invisible force preventing you from looking people in the eye. It’s the voice in your head reminding you of all the times you failed, while telling you to give up trying. It’s the overwhelming sense of futility you experience even though you know, deep down, that there’s always a way out. It’s the black cloud which gathers behind your eyes, confusing your thoughts and blunting your drive to pursue your hopes and dreams. It’s a cancer, eating away at your joyful memories, leaving behind nothing but despair and regret.

Depression answers “why not” with “what’s the point?”. It’s a prison with no windows, where you’re often given parole but you always find yourself back inside. It’s the convincing argument that you are not good enough, and that you never will be. It’s the perpetual reminder of your bad decisions, and the striking from the record of your good ones. It’s the numb feeling of loneliness, even when you’re surrounded by your closest friends. It will render you cold and detached one day, and an emotional landmine the next.

It’s the conflict between a need for attention and the desperate yearning to be left alone. It’s about being curled up in the foetal position facing the wall, not wanting to turn around or open your eyes for fear of what’s out there. It’s the doubt in your own abilities and the lack of courage in your convictions. It’s the gravity you have to struggle against just to get out of bed in the morning, and it’s the reason you can’t go to sleep at night.

It’s a symbiotic parasite – your best friend and your worst enemy. It’s a familiar warm blanket in which you can wrap yourself to hide away. It hurts, and it comforts.

And it’s part of me.


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