It’s noon and you’re still in bed.
It’s Saturday, though, so you hope nobody will notice. Because you don’t want to get up. You don’t want to get out of bed. You just want to lay there for a bit. Or maybe it’s a moment. No, maybe a minute. No, maybe an hour, just an hour. Actually, if you’re being honest with yourself, you just want to stay there all day long. Maybe you’ll be able to stay there until Monday. You say a silent prayer that nobody will notice, that they’ll just let you sleep.
‘Cause sleeping is easier.
Sleeping is better than being. It’s just easier. Sleeping is easier than thinking, easier than feeling, easier than engaging with everyone around you. It’s easier than pretending like you’re happy. It’s easier than having to answer questions about why you’re depressed.
‘Cause you are depressed, but you don’t know how to answer the question of why.
Why are you depressed? You wish you knew. You don’t know why the depression has crept in. It’s invited itself to your work, to your home; it lays with you in your bed. It rests in your heart and in your bones and in your brain. And Depression, she’s a lonely, needy, devious bitch. She always wants company.
Like an abusive lover, she wants you to stay with her. She wants you to not talk to anyone else. She wants you to give her all of you. She is Ursula, you are Ariel—she’d do anything for your voice.
And so you crave sleep, ‘cause she doesn’t seem to follow you into dreamland. Maybe your memories are too boring for her, maybe they’re too scary. Maybe she doesn’t follow you because she doesn’t understand the point of happiness. Maybe it’s all of the above.
It’s easy to be afraid of what we do not understand. The trick is fighting back against that.
It’s 3 p.m. and you hear voices outside your room. You open one eye and stare at your pink sheets. Bright and happy. Like pieces of bubblegum. You miss happiness. You’re not sure how to get back there. You’re not sure where to start.
You shut your eyes again. The voices outside your room keep talking.
You open your eyes and see that your little plant is still thriving. There are some brown leaves, and for a while, you weren’t sure if the little buddy was going to make it. You were convinced you had a black thumb. But you kept doing what your green-thumbed friends told you to do. And now it’s thriving. The voices outside your room keep talking. You realize that they belong to your loved ones. You hear them say, “I miss her.” You think, I miss them too. You hear them say, “I’m worried about her.” You think, I’m worried about me, too. You hear them say, “Where did she go?”
You scream into the pillow, I’M STILL HERE!
There’s a knock at the door. You ignore it. Then there are two. You ignore it again. Now the knocking is met with voices. “We miss you,” they say. Please let us in.
You think about it for a moment. Sleep would be easier. But then you feel Depression doing a dance, ‘cause she thinks you’re not going to let anyone else to her party—and you get mad. And then you get sad. And then you get tired.
You’re so tired of her, and you want her to leave. You want to feel again. You want to laugh again. You don’t want to feel alone anymore. You start to listen to the idea that you don’t have to evict her on your own. You hear the voices on the other side of your door, and for the first time in a long time, you want them to come inside.
You get up and open the door.
You let them in.