Tuesday, January 10, 2017

#Depression isn't a 'Black dog'

Churchill was wrong. #depression isn't a 'Black Dog'. Dogs are loyal, compassionate creatures - depression is anything but.

No, Depression is more like Joni Mitchell's "Beat of black wings" - the sound of helplessness and frustration, anger and self-destruction. 

Depression is a heartless scavenger that hovers maliciously at your steps, it's sleepless beady black eye watching for you to drop your weary guard so that it can flutter in to strip you of your protective skin and gorge on your weakness. 

A Depressive attack starts with just the one lone black-thought: the single crow upon the climbing frame of your mind - but one taste of blood and it gathers into an overwhelming Hitchcockian storm of beaks and claws and feathers that batters about your head, blinding and deafening you to all as it pecks and tears at the soft and tender parts of your heart and mind - leaving you hunched and bleeding and broken: a Tipi Hedren of the heart...



But worse. Depression is not some external force, or malevolent spirit from which you can escape if only you can run fast enough. Depression is YOU. It's your own mind and thoughts - the treacherous chemistry of your own brain. It's your own voice, insidious and twisted, telling you how dark and pointless life is, how pathetic and unworthy you are - how every sin of the world is your fault, because you are stupid, and ugly, and weak. 

And because it knows you so intimately, it is able to block almost every internal defence and turn them against you - knows and exposes every hidden fear and weakness. You may try to fight, to argue back that life can be good, that you have value - but, it twists your words back upon themselves, turns your mind against itself in hateful echoes, and like Jacobs angel, wrestling, uses the strength of your own resistance to wear you down until it can deliver that final, cutting blow that will end the fight - and your own self-inflicting pain.

Depression is the darkest part of yourself, caught up in despite and despair; a cancer of darkness and pain twisted in on itself and wishing only to smother every touch of light and hope - so that it can silence its own pain in the black hole singularity of oblivion.

But take it from one who has survived: Depression may be a terrifying foe, but it IS yourself - and so can never truly be stronger you. The storm of black wings may be overwhelming, and terrifying - but like any storm, it can - and WILL - pass. True, it will leave you weak and bleeding, shakily reaching for the door handle of your mind and stumbling to your car - nervously checking the rear view mirror of your mind for fear of their return - but you will survive, and escape. Maybe not stronger - but certainly more wise...
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