It was a comfortable retreat: the familiar sadness, the open arms of melancholia that was constantly there for me. I knew I could always turn to It. I knew that no matter what, I always had It. It. The dark entity that embraced me whenever I needed It.
At the time I thought that I truly had something special. I thought that maybe I was magical in a sense. I had something no one knew about: a dark secret, a mystical lover. In the middle of the night I would wake up and It would be there, by my side, waiting to engulf me and comfort me. I loved It. My life revolved around retreating to It.
"You look so tired." "You're losing too much weight." "I'm really worried for you, you haven't been yourself lately."
I didn't listen to them. They didn't know what I had. They didn't know how in love I was. I didn't know how in love I was.
Isn't it weird to think of depression as a lover? As an entity instead of a condition? As a comfort as opposed to danger? For me personally, this is how it manifested, and in time I wasn't surprised to find out that others had felt the same way. When I let the darkness consume me, I was comforted. The sadness brought me a sense of acceptance. As someone who never truly "fit in" anywhere, I finally had a place in my own mind where I could be myself.
It wasn't until a close friend sat me down and essentially forced me to talk. I didn't want to but she was relentless until I finally realized, I wasn't in love. I wasn't being comforted. It was hurting me, wearing me down into a wisp of a woman no one recognized anymore. My friend worked hard to open my eyes, and when I finally looked in the mirror, I didn't recognize myself anymore either. Finally, I realized what real love is. Real love was my friend not giving up on me, and in turn giving me the strength not to give up on myself.
This isn't a motivational speech. This isn't a soapbox on which I will yell, "You can make it! You can do it!" This is a realistic note on how it can feel to be in love with the darkness, to love the pain, to relish the dark thoughts. Mimicry is a hell of a power.
It comes back from time to time, creeping It's gnarled fingers between mine, beckoning me. However, once I recognized what It truly was and began to grow, wrenching my hands away became an easier task, no matter how tempting It is.
Thank you for reading this little note. If this resonated with you, or if this is something you've experienced, remember that you are never, ever alone.