They used to think the earth was flat and long, dropping off at some point, past the horizon. If this was the truth, last week I may have tried to walk there, to the edge. I may have just continued to walk. That sounds terribly dramatic, but this is what it’s like to be a person with depression and anxiety. It ebbs and flows with no warning. I wake up some days and just know.
Oh no…it’s here, so heavy…I want to start walking…but no, I can’t. That’s too hard.
It’s like waking with an itchy sore throat, a full chest and head. A cold. No cure, so common. Arriving out of the blue and staying until it feels like going.
This week it is gone. Just like that. Poof. I feel…good.
I wish I could explain the sporadic nature of this coming and going, follow its course to the edge and back again, but I can’t. I suppose if I could, I could help so many of you. Since I can’t, maybe it will help to let you know that you are not alone.
That heaviness behind your eyes, the thick murky mind-numbing pain, the aches in your joints, the inability to focus, the pit in your stomach, the palpitations of your heart. I understand all of this and more and let us please not forget that it can pass. That change is the one thing we can count on. Please don’t forget. And please remind me when I forget.
Even when it settles in, this darkness, stubborn and defeating, I see my children. I see them play and argue and sleep. I see them eat and climb into the minivan for school. I see every facial expression and what it means about the beating of their own emotional lives. I see it all.
Today I looked up and saw Miles tying Asher’s shoe. It was the most simple act of kindness. It was completely mind-blowing, heart-blowing and it was everything.
Looking around at all of this is how we survive. Even when we don’t feel it, can’t muster up joy, it is forever ignited in the soul. Pure connection and unconditional love.
I see them and I’m going to be here riding the ebb and flow and telling the truth about it. The earth was never flat anyway.
This is Just Write, a free-writing exercise in which you sit down with no writing agenda, no pushing for a theme. Watch the details of your stories ignite their own meaning from within: