Depression is like draining the color from all
perception, until you see complete darkness –
like becoming blind in an instant, and having
to rely on the other four senses to navigate
a harsh landscape. It appears without warning,
as if you’re traveling on a frozen lake and the
ice gives way – you sink into the water, you cry,
you flail your arms – but all you can do is stay
afloat until the sun appears again and
(Photo by Collin Hardy on Unsplash)
Rachel has told me many times before of her struggles with anxiety. When I listened to her, I used to not be able to understand it. I’ve always thought of myself as a fairly calm person, and I can remember many moments from over the past several years where I’ve felt very peaceful.
Grief is not a neat, five-stage process that can
be completed like a grade-school assignment.
It’s more like losing someone and then losing
yourself, as well – there’s shock, denial,
and depression – but also the feeling that
there’s a new void that’ll never be filled.
I want to feel connected to the planet –
wet, black soil after a hard rain or swaying
tree boughs that reach out, wish to embrace me.
I want it so much, and yet, I feel nothing –
only a dullness where the planet is another channel
on so many screens, divorced from the living ground
of my ancestors.
(Photo by Jisun Han on Unsplash)
I’m angry and I’m upset. The past few days I’ve sunk into a depression, mixed with bursts of anger. A lot of it has to do with self-isolation. Some of it has to do with bipolar symptoms. However, a lot of it has to do with what’s going on in America right now.
Most of the time, I focus on the parts of my mental illness that are bad. The mood swings, the depressions, the vigilance I need to keep to guard against mania and hypomania. But it’s not all negative.
When dealing with intense emotions, it’s easy for me to suppress them or turn to an addiction to soothe the pain. I’ve been learning over the years there are much better ways of doing this. First, by allowing the feelings to exist and, second, finding healthier ways to self-soothe.