I’m really good at hiding things. For years, I hid my 145 pounds behind loose clothes and untucked shirts. I’ve always hid my pain behind false smiles and I make sure my tears only make an appearance when the house is empty and the shower is running. The Bloggess once wrote a blog post with the title, depression lies. She’s right. Depression is a lying bitch who waits until you’re at your most vulnerable and then She whispers in your ear, confirming all the bad things about you that you are convinced are true.
Depression has been gleefully whispering to me for many years, but She’s been particularly loud for the last 24 hours and it’s so damned easy to just listen to Her and allow Her to drown out all the other voices who disagree with Her. Why? Because it’s easier to believe that I’m a mediocre person with no personality, minimal talent, and below-average looks rather than to fight Her.
Because that voice of Depression is MY inner voice. And it’s hard to ignore yourself. Especially when She is adamant in Her beliefs.
There are numerous external voices belonging to family and friends, each reminding me of all the positive things about me. For the most part, they keep Depression at bay and I listen to them, hoping beyond hope that they’re true. And then, one external voice disagrees with all the others. For whatever reason, this external voice, or opinion, tells me something that agrees with my Depression. And then that Bitch is off and running and I can’t drown Her out, no matter what I do. It will take me days to push Her away, to quiet Her down, to finally ignore Her lies. But by then, the damage has been done. More cracks have appeared in my psyche, and Depression has a better foothold for the next time.
I didn’t write this for sympathy or for kind words. I didn’t write this because I’m at risk for harming myself or others. I write this, I’m sharing this, because at times, people seem genuinely surprised that I think so little of myself. But I do. All the time. I just wanted to let everyone know that even the strongest-seeming people are sometimes the weakest, that our internal battles are the hardest we will ever face. And that ultimately, we do it alone.
But, I want to remind you all that your voices help. I’ll drown Her out soon enough and listen to you again. Until then, keep talking. Please.