Depression & Autism Diaries: Free writing diary 1.

31st December 2020

I picture a slug slowly disintegrating in on itself under a pile of salt.

This picture comes to mind as all the noise in my head gets too much and all the things surrounding me feel like weights pulling me down.

I am the slug.

And the world around me and my own brain is the salt.

But the brain of course is me which means I am the salt as well as the slug.
How a slug that dies from salt yet creates its own salt evolved is beyond me, but here I am.

Perhaps I’m evidence that evolution is a con and God is real and so is the Devil. Perhaps I’m created not by God but by the Devil?

That would be the case if it’s true that God is all loving, wouldn’t it? He wouldn’t create me this way, just to ‘test’ me?

I can’t think of anything more evil.

Sometimes when I listen to religious people I find myself having a thought, ‘The bible is satanic.’
I think it’s been inverted, they think the book they read is the inspired word of God. But what if it was the Devil? To me that makes more sense of some of the horrific things in the bible.

Of course, in reality I don’t believe in God or the Devil.
But sometimes I do ponder, if, perhaps, maybe, the book they preach from has always been an inversion of what should be good and ‘proper.’

I also noticed as I typed this, free wheeling it, no plan, no idea what may come out, that the word inspired has sin in it.

I never meant to type up about God, the Devil and religion. What prompted me to write was the image of the slug in my head and then I figured from there I’d probably talk about nature and my place in it, or my feelings of a lack of place in it.

Or my place in it is a slug or some other kind of ‘pest.’

This is the kind of head space I’m in right now.

It’s been brewing for a few months now, I think. My Depression ebbing and flowing in my brain.

Days forgotten because I don’t think I did anything but sit in the same spot all day.

Days remembered because the stress of something, usually quite small to a ‘normal’ person has gotten to me. Nights remembered where I’ve googled the word, ‘suicide.’

The thoughts that occur in my head that when thought about too much bring on pangs of guilt.

Things like, ‘I wish I didn’t have to carry on living for the sake of others.’  After reading articles about the aftermath of suicide and those left behind.

Also, ‘I wish I didn’t have to deal with the budgie.’ Because then I wouldn’t have to deal with the idea that he may be stressed moving to a new place when I’m gone.

In the end I come to the conclusion that I’m stuck here.
That if the thought of other peoples stress makes it too much for me to die by my own hand, then I guess I have to stick around.

Plus, when I’ve had that thought, what is there left to lose. Do all the things I fear matter when I want to die anyway?

yet the anxiety is still there.

Initially this idea that I stick around for others sake mean I’m trapped so may as well just stick with it all is somewhat comforting. Relaxing even.

But the days roll on and the nights blink by and the feelings of emptiness grow.
Emptiness is the only word I can think to describe it but really it’s a fullness of something, but that something it self can only be described as empty.

It’s empty fullness.

The emptiness is a fullness that becomes restlessness.

And tiny things are irritating.

Everything is a chore.

The budgie keeps me going.
I enjoy his company.

The Jays keep me going.
I enjoy their presence.

But I’m not so sure these days that ‘enjoy’ is the right word.

Because I’m full of empty.

Depression is like being bloated with empty air. With a somethingness that merges towards ‘nothing’.

It’s like when you see a garden with weed crawling through the spokes of wheels.
Have you ever tried to move something that has become an anchor to knotweeds? Whatever they can grab a hold of becomes its hostage.

But according to one source on how to kill off Japanese knotweed, covering the area with a tarp to completely cut off it’s light supply can help.

Perhaps I need to live in darkness until the weeds are dead and I’m no longer held hostage.

Chapter 12: Dragonfish

Dust motes glide in the split streams of light as people raise their arms over their heads in a colourful array of supposed dance moves. The music blasts and you can feel the bass vibrating through your bones.

I don’t know if their smiles are real, I project onto them the fakeness of my own smile.

I find myself walking through the crowds of people aimlessly chasing for those moments with Jasmine. Women are brushing against me and I’m trying to act like it’s the best night of my life, looking around me at all these faces flashing different colours in the lights, and I’m thinking, ‘are you listening to the lyrics?’

“Please tell me why, oh tell me why do we build castles in the sky…”

“Do you ever question your life?” Why yes, yes I do I question it all the time.

I’m drowning and you’re all living in a submarine separate from me. I can’t breathe.

“I think it’s time to talk with you…..Where is the love?”

Can’t you hear the desperation in their voice?  I want to shake these people. They call it trance music, and it seems appropriate because they’re set in a trance dancing, moving their body like hypnotised robots.

“Give me a reason, must be a reason to hold on to what we’ve got,”

I think I’ve seen Jasmine amongst a crowd of colourful dancing people.

What is the reason? Why are we holding on?

I’m spiralling. Going deeper and deeper into the depths of the ocean, I’m dying and the woman I thought was Jasmine was a bearded man with long hair.

The music is too bright to lights to loud. Existential voices sing over beats that propose promise of a good time. My mind can’t get over the contradiction.

Greenlight, arms raised, purple, pose, red, pout those lips and move that butt. Do the robot. “I don’t wanna say I’m sorry, because I know there’s nothing wrong,” But there is! Everything is wrong!

“Hold me in your arms, cause I need you so.”

I rush out of the club and throw up in a side street. I can still hear the thump of every beat inside the building, feel it shaking my bones.

“Don’t be afraid, there’s no need to worry…”

I go to a nearby carpark and climb till I reach the top floor. The music is blasting from across the road, the neon lights shining on the night.

I stand on the edge. I hear the beginnings of a song called ‘Children’ from across the road. I know they’re dancing in there like it doesn’t sound sad. It must be me and my perception. No. The world is lost and I’m drowning in an abyss. I stand on the edge. The beat the music has gotten heavier. Like my heart.

That lingering tone behind the beat, behind the melody it reeks of sadness. Or am I just too sad to hear the happiness?

I’m dizzy, I’m tired. I lean forward and open my arms to the wind.

Close my eyes.

This is it.

Blue lights. Heavy heart.

Are those blue lights part of the club?

Sirens reach out like a hand over the music.

My hairs a mess and my palms are wet with sweat.

I feel like I’ve had an electrocution to the head.

“You don’t want to do this, son.” A male voice says behind me.

The music coming from the club speaks for me. But he doesn’t hear it’s sadness, he hears it as people having a good night.

 

3 months out of hospital:

 

I submerge my face under the water and I look up at the ceiling. I hold my breath. I hear her footsteps drawing near; I lift my head out with a gasp.
Jasmine peers around the door, “The film will be starting in 10 minutes!” She tells me before closing the door behind her and sauntering off back to the lounge.

 
I’m trying to learn to be a dragonfish, learning how to be my own source of light.

 

 

 

                  The End 

 

 

Under the Iron Sea

Under the iron sea

 

 

 

It was 2006, and my head was just beginning to emerge from under the iron sea.
I was in a psychiatric ward due to severe depression.

I always remember these words during a review meeting, “You were very unwell when you arrived.”
Before then I had never viewed myself as having been ‘very unwell’ despite the self-harm and wanting to kill myself It still hadn’t registered with me that I was ‘seriously unwell’ I considered that kind of talk to be reserved for ‘real’ mental illnesses like schizophrenia.
I just viewed myself as a loser who couldn’t cope with life.

What did I have to be depressed about anyway? Sure I was teased a lot at school but compared to what some people go through who are bullied, it seemed like something I should just be able to shrug off. Sure my mobility had lessened for no reason that any doctor could find, and I used (still use) a wheelchair for long distance. But again, what did I have to be depressed about?

There were problems in time that I would realise I had, through the ever-growing self-awareness we possess. Each problem became something to tick off my list when ‘solved’ something that I could say, “aha! This is where the depression spawns itself and leaks into the rececesses of my mind from!” only to find once that problem dwindled, or was solved that actually my depression would remain.
Granted some of my problems cannot be ‘solved’ and only ‘treated’ with drugs and a ‘wait and watch’ approach. But the point is those problems get ‘treated’ and the pain from them becomes ‘lesser’ even if they sometimes come back with a vengeance every now and then.

But still, the depression persists like a cyst that keeps reopening it’s wound.

I’ve noticed stages to my depression throughout my life. Through childhood, I now realise I was already depressed very early on, but it was an emptiness that I could just about for short periods distract myself from. This made me a very demanding friend though, and I was insistent on always playing out, a friend that denied me my fun would anger me. How dare they feel too tired to play out, or heaven forbid just simply, ‘not feel like playing.’
What do you mean you don’t ‘feel’ like playing out? You think I ‘feel’ like it? No! I HAVE to play out! Because if I don’t, I’m left with my own emptiness. 

This persistent need to always be playing outside continued on into my teens but my depression was getting darker, and I was becoming more and more desperate. My thoughts soon turned from playing out to another way to escape. Thinking about death in general and specifically suicide. Depression had taken me whole now, and I didn’t even see much point in having friends anymore either.
Most of them had started to distance themselves from me by this point anyway, they didn’t realise I was just as tired of me as they were. Or maybe they did.
I understand I was toxic. Something negative radiated from me, how could it not? I always lied to save face every time I was caught out crying or just looking too miserable. Some really unforgivable lies passed my lips.
They were never planned out lies, there was never an intelligent manipulating mastermind behind those lies. They spilt out of my mouth in moments where I’d been caught out feeling too miserable for words to comprehend. How does a teenager who doesn’t really understand himself what the fuck is going on in his head explain his feelings? I didn’t have a word for it. ‘Sad’ didn’t fit, it wasn’t ‘sad’ it was more, it was worse than sad. I could have said, “Actually now that you ask if you must know I feel like the world is a dark place that has beaten and eaten me and spits me back out. My world is upside down, or it’s the right way around, I don’t know. But what I do know is that I have this despair filling my lungs and every moment of every day feels like I’m drowning. Death would be a good escape for me, but I’m afraid of the pain of dying so tell me, how do I walk the path to death without the pain? Also, does the world look dark to you too? I don’t mean metaphorically, I mean physically does it look dark to you? Those lights above our heads, aren’t they really murky and dark and give off hardly any light what so ever?” But who wants to listen to that? So when some kid who would usually be laughing at me one day for some bizarre reason unknown to me decides to ask me if I’m okay, because “god you look miserable” sometimes just being asked that question alone would make me burst into tears. And then they’d say, “Woah, what’s up? Tell us?” And since I couldn’t say the above I’d find myself saying something like, “One of my dogs just died.” But none of my dogs just died. In fact, the dog that has come to mind died when I was baby but she has a name, and so it’s an easy lie to tell, it’s a real dog that was once alive and had a real name, so I didn’t have to make it all up on the spot. It was there for me, and these kids knew no better. “Oh I’m so sorry,” They’d reply. And my tears would seem less pathetic because death had happened and who doesn’t cry when their dog dies?
Because most of the time I was crying at nothing that could be proven to be ‘real’ I was crying because I was crying any reasons behind it be damned. Yes depression was the ‘reason’, but there was often no catalyst like an actual dog dying other than those words, “Are you okay?” So there were no words to say when they asked me “are you okay” and I burst out crying other than some lie I could think of on the spot to make my tears look reasonable. Crying has always been something I reserve as something I do on my own, but in those moments for whatever reason, I just broke.
The truth is I only have two basic facial expressions for people to understand, still to this day, one is crying, the other is laughter.

Fast forward to 2006 and I’m in a psychiatric ward and on visits home my mother would always be playing a Keane Album in her car called under the Iron Sea. Now everytime I listen to that album it takes me back to the car seat. It takes me back to waiting in the car while she picked up my prescription from the hospital pharmacy and the music became a soundtrack to a silent emptiness that was somehow filling me. I was better than I was, I was back to the empty numbness of my childhood. It’s an emptiness with a glimmer of hope but somehow it’s all the more painful. It’s a more silent form of depression than the one where I couldn’t help but cry. Becuase I have no words again and no tears either just this growing deep brooding feeling. The car feeling too small, like I’m suffocating in it, suffocating within myself, my lungs suffocating from breathing. The doctors in the review meeting earlier on that day were all smiles and congratulations for me, for how far i’d come. And there I was sat in the car with this silent depression inside me with no way of expressing it. They were talking about me going home for good, not just for tea or for a weekend, but for good.

And i’ve been in this depressive cycle ever since. Back and forth from crying more easily than is normal to this silent depressive, oppressive thing inside me. Never really reaching a point where I’m passed the depression. Like being trapped in that car but I’m locked in, no words to describe it, at least not adquately enough.

No words are ever enough
And not speaking at all is torture.