The Worst Thing About Being A High Functioning Depressive Is That No One Can Tell

@estherhelen /
@estherhelen /

High-functioning depression. I heard of it once. It’s true what they say: You can’t truly understand something until you experience it.

My thoughts feel foreign, though I feel the same. It’s as if there’s a virus in my mind that’s gone undetected until it manifests through malfunctions. Mostly behavioral – why did I say that? Or, what am I even doing anymore?

Spiral after spiral of foreignness lending way to complete unfamiliarity with the world. The world I used to know. It feels as if it’s causing an existential crisis. Why am I even here still?

I’ve never had suicidal thoughts before. Now, I sometimes take comfort at the thought of my passing. Perhaps not by my own hand, that’s a scary, dangerous room surrounded by lock, key, and lasers. I lost one of my best friends to suicide. It’s caused so much pain to us who’ve been left behind. I’ve promised myself that I couldn’t do that to the ones I love.

But the thought of dying, of having burden unloaded and mind emptied, is a silent wish waiting to be fulfilled.

Part of me is optimistic, believing this to be a phase. Take comfort in context, for it forges a path for us to see the way out. Another part isn’t so certain, and the over thinker in me now understands what it’s like to be in this dark place.

Is it proper language to say that one sees what a dark place can hold?

Not all of it, of course, just a sample. But a sample is enough to ignite spark of hope into flame of life. I want to heal. I want to recover. It’s that I don’t know how.

Should I work on pinpointing the root causes on my own? The thought of seeking help, through counseling or meditation is well contemplated but a barrier still exists. So this is stigma.

Maybe there’s a certain point that I should get myself to before I seek help. To clarify some of my thoughts so that I can present them to somebody else, gaining their counsel in more effective way.

Truth is, this is just procrastination. But it feels so damn relieving to write this, to just let it go to another place for more distant examination without possibility of rumination spinning disastrous vortex.

This is therapy on its own, and no expectations of judgment are held toward this keyboard and screen.

It is a wonder how immensely heavy an untouchable, invisible burden can weigh. And yet it now lifts – enough that my lips find the motion of curling up into a smile more feasible.

It is a wonder how that smile appears and disappears just as quickly when others ask me how I’m doing. Façade. Yet further understanding of words and phrases.

It is a wonder what we do to survive. For now, to survive means to hide. To hide from the pain, pushed aside in hopes of self-resolution. Or more hopefully, spontaneous combustion.

But I know that to hide is to prolong, and to prolong is to feed pain. It grows stronger with each waking breath – each breath filled with the air propelled by the pushing of a stubborn, rebellious mind that has occupied my body.

I want to own my mind again, and the power that entails. It’s all just in your head.

That’s true – but how in the hell can you fix your mind using your mind?

I do need help. But for tonight, these keys and digital paper will do. Maybe I’ll Google help when I wake up.

Maybe when I wake up, my mind will have returned from wherever it went off to. Maybe it never left. Maybe it’s hiding, like how I’m hiding from pain. Maybe I’ll find it there.

Morning will come. And so will an answer. Thought Catalog Logo Mark

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