I have struggled with depression all my life. Great times when it seems that the beast upon my back has left me and I can bask in ordinary, happy living things like normal human beings. And then with no warning that dark, dense, weight is upon me once more and I am bowed down, struggling, wading as if through earth rather than air such is the impossibility and intensity of every move, every moment.
So many times I have thought I have beaten it once and for all. Each time I am wrong. I have had long dark nights, and sometimes even days, when suicide has beckoned me, called me, wooed me, whispered to me and seduced me with her siren song of peace.
Still I am here. This bout, whether it is menopausal, hormonal, mid life or a spiritual crossroads, the crux upon which the rest of my life will spin, is very bad. The good news is that deep down in my hole I seem to have some clarity. We know that I have seen myself as I truly am in all my horror and am still reeling from that. I can’t seem to see anything about myself to like or to redeem me. That has been pretty painful. For weeks.
Yesterday I decided I was a good cook. Today that I can sing. All very nice but these are neither moral highpoints or gifts to those around me or the world.
Right now the thread anchoring me to the planet is that Ben asked the other day when I was singing ‘When I wish upon a star’ for him, if he could wish. I said, of course. ‘For anything?’ ‘For anything, my darling boy, what would you wish for?’ ‘You’ he said.
In my tears this afternoon I realised that my heart and soul right now are at midwinter. I may not be able to see anything but the bleak desolation of a sleeping earth (and feel its weight pressing upon me) but just as I can see the potential when I plant a seed or clear the land, so too can someone, somewhere (call him or her what you will – I call it God) see beyond this darkness of mine into a spring when some little seed will germinate and grow and one day there will be a blossoming and one day I will flower fully into myself – all the brighter, more beautiful and more precious because of the struggle through the darkness into the light.
And I heard a song I haven’t heard for a long, long time:
|Some say love it is a river
that drowns the tender reed
Some say love it is a razer
that leaves your soul to blead
Some say love it is a hunger
It’s the heart afraid of breaking
that never takes the chance
It’s the one who won’t be taken
When the night has been too lonely