Living, loving and losing with depression

The widest smiles
switch to the biggest frowns.
Internal only, mind you.
For all’s well to the world.
A reason, you ask?
There’s none.
Just an expansive feeling
of dark nothingness
and nauseating despair;
All encompassing
progressively expanding.
Never sated.
Even when it engulfs my everything
And me.
Impelling to a newer abyss,
bigger and lower than before.
Taking with itself
smiles and dreams,
hopes and aspirations,
joys and memories of joys.
Extinguishing even the smallest
flickering ray of hope.
Clawing at the dank walls
with every ounce of being,
trying to hold on
with long torn out nails
and a dreadfully worn out heart.
But the mind overturns
the battle of the heart.
Almost as instinct,
it pushes for the last breath;
A waspy, sharp inhale
of life itself.
A renewed vigor,
a last ditch effort
to rise above
to rekindle the suffused.
And lo and behold
It works!
Gasp by gasp,
bit by bit,
finding unseen footing.
The well-hidden light
secure in the heart,
Now a steady flame,
small but strong,
growing with each heave,
egging and spurring,
cushioning missteps,
lifting through the falls.
The memories seem to return,
faint recollections of another life,
in days of sunshine and rainbows;
Chuckle and laughter,
warmth and purpose,
refreshingly normal.
The burrows on the face
invert to the ghost of a smile.
All’s well in the world.
Finding it in the heart
to conquer the darkness.
And then,
with the slightest of nudges,
back in the chasm!
As dark, as scary, as cold
as I remember.
Is this my ‘normal’ now?
Permanently and inexplicably?
Can I give up?
One word and it’ll all be gone,
the pain, the torture, the anguish,
replaced for peace at last.
Or do I strive?
To find it in myself
to grow back those claws
to embark once over?
One more time?
And another?
And another?

The prompt for Day 30 of NaPoWriMo, ’17 is to write a poem about something that happens again and again. While the premise was general, I have been meaning to write about fighting depression for a very long time and this prompt looked like a good opportunity. It took me over a month to actually write what was essentially a task for a ‘daily’ prompt. However, I guess you’ll agree that the content deserves thought, consideration and consequently, time. Some of it is indeed a personal account but a lot is also testaments from people who suffer with cyclical anxiety and depression. I hope you find solace and strength through this poem. May we be better together.

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