Today, for the first time in years I am feeling just awful.I feel the way I felt when I had Post Natal Depression. My life feels like a heavy weight bearing down on me, strangling me. I am incapable of fighting.My only resort is to write, to try and empty myself of this feeling.
I have just screamed at my children for no good reason and I am surrounded by things that need doing. Things that I can't do. The washing. The dishes.My essay.The hoovering.Everything is closing in on me.
When I had my boys this happened, but I didn't know what it was.I was supposed to be happy - with a young baby that we had wanted for so long. And all I felt was overwhelmed. Overwhelmed and empty at the same time. I would stare at nothing for long periods of time and I could see no point in anything. My life. Anybody's life.
As I feel now I am both angry and empty. Now I can analyse my emotions - then they took me over and consumed me.Now I know that I will get through this. Then I could quite easily have ended everything and I would not have cared.Today I am filled with emptiness, but also a hatred for everything around me. I want to stand and scream and scream until I am too tired and my throat is too sore. Until I fall to my knees and weep and weep and sleep.
One day when my boys were tiny I took them to my friend's house and begged her to look after them for an hour while I got help. I knew that I had to see someone or I would do something terrible.I was filled with shame and a sense of awful failure. How could someone like me, middle class, intelligent,bright,calm, how could I have fallen prey to a break down?I got to the doctor's and stood in reception crying.The doctor saw me and told me that I was not a failure, that this was the first day of getting better, because I had had the guts to ask for help.
It took time, but I did get better.
Today is a blip.I know that my hormones are screwing me up today. Chemicals in my body are messing with my mind.But it still hurts.I know that this is not the long slow slide into madness. It is a temporary condition.I have realised that depression is something that I can cope with. I have lived through it and come out the other side. It is not something to be ashamed of and not something that has any foundation in reason.You could look at me and tell me that I have everything - health, kids,comfort - but when the demons of depression take a hold they do so relentlessly, cruelly.The world goes dark and cold.I am filled with doubt, fear, hatred.
Today I feel alone and I feel useless.Today I know that I will never be a teacher, never fulfill my potential.Today I know that I am unloved, unliked, ugly and selfish.And writing this down will begin to allow me to hear the small voice of reason in the distance.The voice of reason tells me to get up, go for a walk,do something positive... even if it is only to clear the coffee table.A journey starts with tiny steps.
I am sorry to burden you with this.By the time you read this I will be much better. I have learned to cope. But thank you for reading this at all. The fact that you reached the end makes me feel a little warmer.