For years, my dear non-depressed friends have often asked me this question.
I hate this question. I don’t know how to answer it.
However, in the process of understanding my condition, of healing, of being able to open up and finally perhaps helping someone going through something similar I asked myself.
What do you feel like?
I seem to have come to the stage, where at a glance one would say that I feel nothing. I am aloof and asocial. I stay away from the limelight, and lurk in the darkness. Silently. People often don’t realise that I am in the same room.
However, if you looked closely. If you dared to. You would see a girl struggling with her new found adult hood
Trapped, in a cage that she built herself. The cage is made of her despair,of societal pressure to fit in, her failures, her negative self perception of everything around her… most importantly herself.
Her despair continues to grow, so does her imprisonment.
The cage and the caged can no longer be distinguished.
What does depression feel like?
I first tried committing suicide when I was 9. When I tell people this, they mock horror. They wonder what went through my head. What drove me to take my own life. Wasn’t a happy loving family enough?
Depression doesn’t discriminate amongst its preys. From the outset one could be a happy person, with all comforts and reasons to be content. However, on the inside there would be storms one would not imagine.
Silences that haunt, failures that taunt.
I was 9. And when I really think.
I felt nothing really.
Depression is the routinisation of pain.
I was in pain. I had been in pain for as long as I could remember. There was no end to it. Like an ocean that stretches for miles and miles across, no horizon and no shoreline.
J.K.Rowling, the writer of the world renowned Harry Potter series, derived inspiration for the Dementors from her depression.
Dementors feed on happy memories.
They suck out all the happiness leaving you with self mortifying despair.
On a general basis, I feel nothing.
But when I feel, I feel all at once.
I am like a surging volcano, unhurt by the waves but
I am also the barren sea shore ravaged by a tsunami of emotions.
I have been all of this and much more for 11 years now, and despite calling myself a ‘writer’
I cannot put words to describe what I feel.
Just like the question, the repetition of the process has made it routine, normal, indistinguishable.
What do you really feel like.
Nothing or Everything?