Depression settles differently in different people. For some it can be a mind fog or a tightness in the chest, or a heaviness in the abdomen.

For me personally, Depression lurks beneath the surface of my face.

I can feel it tugging at my cheeks and brow. It weighs my muscles down, makes them droop, even when I feel at ease. I hate it because it feels so plainly obvious, so etched into my features that I want to cover it up and hide. I feel ugly and ashamed, worrying that what is perceived as a poor mood will affect others.

And I am miserable, especially when my pain feels so apparent, and no one offers me assistance. No comforting words or touch. No attention. And then I hate myself for expecting any of that, especially when I’m being quiet about how I feel.

I want to be held and coddled and told it will be okay. But I’m not a child and I shouldn’t expect such treatment from my fellow adults. I need to stand on my own, or so my mind says.

I feel alone. Even surrounded by my friends, whom I truly adore and know adore me, I feel like an outsider. Isolated. Unnecessary.

The phrase ‘stepping stone’ haunts me. I don’t know where I first heard it, but it’s a term my Depression hammers into my mind: that I am merely a means to an end, an element of support for others, and that my own dreams are forfeit as a result.

Some days I believe it. Today was one of those days. To feel like I am just a tool for others’ success and happiness. That I could disappear and it would only mean inconvenience.

I hate these days. I do know better. I do know that all of this is just temporary. That it’s a side effect of my birth control, or of my period, or the poor, dark weather of Washington. That it can and will be resolved with time.

My friends are happy. Can’t I simply be happy for them and be satisfied with that? Why do I need to feel personal happiness? Can’t I just shut up and accept my role as a tool?

As I write this, I can feel Depression squirming beneath my skin. The bags beneath my eyes feel heavy. My jaw set. My lips in a thin line. I hate it. I want to relax and I can’t, because my personal demon is trying to drag me to hell as usual.

It wasn’t this bad a few months ago. I was happy and satisfied and content and light. Now I am sullen and heavy and doubtful.

I don’t want to have to keep upping my dosage. I want to be stable. I thought I was stable.

Why can’t I just accept it?

Leave a Reply