You go through each day pretending to be okay, and some days you are. Some days you wake up and you’re just ready to take on the world, but there are other days when you don’t want to move from your bed. Days when you feel like the struggling never ends and you can’t think straight and everything hurts.
You get up because you know you have to. You get up because you don’t want people to worry because you think that’s what being strong is.
You tell your friends everything is fine, you laugh with them and you go out to eat with them. You act like nothing in the world is bothering you. No one really ever questions you, maybe they ask you what’s wrong if you’re being noticeably quiet. Maybe they give you a little nudge and tell you everything will be okay or that things aren’t that bad. And you smile, you tell them things will be fine, you know they will. Maybe you will start to believe it if you’re constantly telling yourself that.
You try to be cheery, you try to be the one that no one expects to be depressed because you know what it feels like to feel the lowest lows. You know what it feels like to be in darkness so you want to be the one who can spread light onto others. You want to show other people that things aren’t as bad as they seem. Depression doesn’t just hit you when you’re alone in your room. It hits you everywhere, depression doesn’t care what you’re doing, but you try like hell to ignore it so you don’t break down and cry in public.
Then you get in your car and you put your head against the steering wheel and you release all the emotion you’ve been fighting back. You cry and you don’t know why. You just had fun, you just spent time with people you love and people who love you, but you’re overwhelmed with emotion that you can’t talk down anymore.
You drive home and you think about just driving forever, until you run out of places and names that sound familiar. You fantasize about just going and you wonder if you’d even be missed at all. You wonder what would happen if you just drove and didn’t look back. But you go home, you go to your bed and you don’t move. You don’t answer your phone, you don’t talk to anyone and you listen to the songs that make you feel pain, the songs that remind you that you’re not alone, no matter how lonely it feels.
The worst part is that you’re not alone, you know that you’re not alone, but you can’t help but feel it. You can’t help but feel like you’re drowning in your own life and your own sorrow. You’re still trying to fight this battle, to figure it out, to get better. You feel like you’re making progress some days but other days it’s like you’re right back to where you started.
It’s a constant battle that you feel like will never end. You’ve come a decent way from where you used to be. You used to let depression dictate your plans, all your friends would go out and you’d just tell them you were ‘too tired’ to make it while you were puffy eyed crying in your room. Some nights are still like this and some nights you think you can do it but end up going home early. It’s all okay, but you find yourself constantly making excuses because when you tell people you’re feeling down they tell you to ‘cheer up’ and it doesn’t help, not even the slightest bit.
It’s trying to be positive but knowing that depression could creep up behind you any second and ruin your mood. It’s hating being alone because that’s when it’s the worst, but also pushing people away because you need to be alone to think. It’s putting on a tough face when life throws you punches and trying with all your might to fight back instead of let depression allow life to defeat you. It’s taking jokes from the guys and pretending it doesn’t bother you. It’s a constant battle of trying to be tough and trying to be true to your emotions.
Depression is that thick fog that isn’t out every day, but you still never know if it will be there later down the road. You never know if it will be there to make your drive more difficult or if it will be smooth sailing. It’s always a challenge and you know either way you have to go through it because you have to keep moving forward.
You’ve grown more used to it now though, almost like it’s a routine. You know it’s unavoidable. Some days are harder than others, but every day you know you have to push through. So you put on your smile, you laugh and you get shit done. But at the end of the day you still know the darkness that washes over you, but you don’t let it define you. Not these days. Not anymore.