Content Warning: Stream of conscience/thought, anti-life talk.
A stiffening numbness takes over, leaving you in a semi-paralytic state. You simply stare in whatever direction your eyes are pointing, no compass necessary. Would it really be that different if the view was of a seaside or a nice countryside? Nothing could fool you into thinking you’d enjoy it even if it were a tropical rainforest with a waterfall and colourful birds with hooked orange beaks fluttering through the canopy. You’re too drenched in grey which occasionally smudges into charcoal like an accidental tipping of an ashtray. You’re ashes without the flames. Something dead and used up. You have no future and upon further consideration you realise you had no past, at least not one you’re willing to think about.
Memories can be comforting, they remind you that you once did, once had, once thought, once realised, once learned, once laughed… but they can be an abstract puzzle of disconnected images that diffract through your mind and clash horribly. Nothing makes sense. Why? Why are you here? What is the purpose of thought? Why is it so hard to breathe when you know there’s more than enough air in your room? Why do you see flashes of things you’ve tried to bury for so long, things that weren’t reduced to ashes but rather remained only slightly charred around the edges? Are you a worker ant scurrying to be of service to the queen simply so more ants come into existence, and then what, those ants in turn do that, why? If you exist simply so existence itself continues then isn’t it pointless? That makes existence the most important purpose in the world. But again, why? Wouldn’t nothingness be equally effective in producing nothing of actual purpose? Then again, what is purpose and why do we assume it is necessary? Sounds like capitalism, working because you’re meant to so as to be productive for maximum profit, squeezing out every ounce of your productivity. So does that mean capitalism is instinctive and necessary? Maybe your whole purpose is to be a contributing part of a society that fools itself into thinking that it has a future when in fact each individual perishes at one point or another with only blood and sweats splattered behind to be remembered by briefly. An aim for the aimless.
The numbness is sometimes replaced with a strange melancholy that moistens your eyes and takes up all your energy and diffuses it into nothingness. Your fatigue is hard to explain but you feel weary to your bones and a few decades older. You stop bothering to do basic things that your daily routine consists of. You even give up on things you love, not because you don’t love them anymore but because you simply cannot bring yourself to do them. Like an artist’s block only magnified. You realise how dangerous this could get. A malady to the brain isn’t like a broken leg, you don’t simply put it in a cast and wait for it to heal. That is why mental illness is far worse. If your brain is healthy, you can live fairly steadily and maybe even happily. But if the disease is in your central unit, there’s little you can do. How does one escape one’s thoughts?
I used to think people who said they were depressed were trying too hard to be emo or seem deep. That is until I developed a depressive disorder. How I could ever have thought it a joke is beyond me. You have those lovely folk who understand and say they hate that it’s happening to you and those that’ll ignorantly call you a liberal snowflake (I’m not).
I’m still depressed and it is different for everyone so nobody can understand what anyone is going through even if they have the same ailment. Some wake up and decide not to move from their beds, others get up and act cheerful with plastic smiles, others still go through the day like a ghost nobody else can see and put on a brave front for themselves out of sheer willpower.
All suffer and none should have to. But why not? If suffering makes life seem more real or more abstract, both circumstances are infinitely more bearable than the disturbing reality of mundane work-to-live-then-die-bored life. Some days, I live in a haze of fantasy, imagining dystopias and utopias to comfort myself into believing in idealistic worlds or that this one isn’t the worst. I like to dream, completely blocking out any interaction with reality and people. Other days I sit there observing reality and people. Both mental frames are more comforting than active participation in the play of life. Looking through the goggles of fantasy or of existentialism can make the black and white seem kaleidoscopic or grey. It depends on you. Not everything is linear. You’ll never gain anything from simply succumbing to normality. Then again, you’ll never gain anything, ever.
Life on Earth is like a purgatory. Monsters lurk in the shadows, stalking you every step of the way and you never know when they’ll pounce out. Depression is knowing that all the monsters you should worry about are in your head.