“Depression is a prison where you are both the suffering prisoner and the cruel jailer.”
There is a very fine line between life and death, especially for the depressed. How many times has this thought enter your mind? You want the pain to end: you don’t want to live and you don’t want to die either. You want to cease being in a way that nobody will notice, but you. You are standing all alone on this line waiting for a strong wind or a breeze to sway you in either direction. Any situation will bring about this ambivalence on the part of you that is depressed and not only. At times you feel like giving into the darkness as if that is the only thing left to do; when it is more bearable, you can notice movement, but it is slow and your feet feel heavy.
When the world comes crashing down on you, you feel like there are no choices to be made, or no choices at all. You engulf yourself into the deep sea of darkness and you’re convinced that your arms are not strong enough to manage to grasp and pull, your legs can’t hold you up, and the emptiness you feel in your stomach is further pulling you down into the black abyss. You feel alone in the world and you think that there is no one, simply nobody that could possible grasp what and how you feel; and in a way you’re right. You’re right that nobody can know how depression feels like to you, what it is like to be you when you’re in pain. Does that mean that nobody knows how it feels to be alone, isolated, empty, sad, afraid, desperate and all the other emotions that make up depression? Keep in mind that in reality, you’re not really alone, or, at least you’re not the only one who is.
There are these tiny moments, when you allow yourself if only for one second to look around, when you realize that things do shift or at least are slightly different. It’s in these tiny moments that you are faced with a choice, whether it feels like one or not: “will I go on and try again or will I stay stuck”? There is always a choice to be made, no matter how small or big. We all make thousands of choices each day, from trivial ones (banana or apple?) to big ones (do I want to continue this relationship?) to monumental (do I want to make a change in myself?).
Change is scary because there is no way of knowing what will be. When you make one of these monumental choices, you’re venturing into the depths of the unknown. Only the thought of it is terrifying! Then again, what’s the alternative? The familiar, the feelings you know, the acute pain, alone and empty. This is the choice you must make. Will you stay with the hard, but familiar and no sign of change or will you go with the hard, but unknown and the possibility that it could get better? It’s a hard decision and one that needs to be taken only when you feel truly ready and without the influence of what you “should” do or other pressing expectations.