I stopped crying about two years ago now.
I’m not sure what happened, but something in my brain just clicked and the debilitating sadness just… stopped.
At first I was confused, then I got frustrated and upset. I felt like all my emotion was at the bottom of a deep, dark pit, and I was at the very top of the pit with absolutely no way of reaching it.
Up until that point, I’d had depression for a very long time- as long as I can remember, in fact. As a child, I spent much of my time at school in toilet cubicles crying. When I came home, I would climb into my wardrobe and close the door. The darkness was soothing to me, somehow, and I was comforted by the four walls around me, holding me tightly while I cried.
I am still not used to the idea of not feeling sadness all the time. I no longer know what to do with myself. It’s like I have all this free time to do… stuff. I have time to do all the mundane things that I never got done because I spent all my time writhing around on the floor, crying my little heart out.
Now I’m just lost.
I used to be ambitious. I used to care about everything and everyone immensely. I used to feel everything so intensely that I could barely cope, and the only way of dealing with it seemed to be crying. As a child, I played in a basketball grand final where I infamously cried the entire game. (We still won, mind you). The parents who watched that game never let me live that down.
Now I feel nothing at all.
I still have a mask of normality that I put on when I go to work, or occasionally leave the house for whatever reason. I laugh and joke with colleagues, I chat about the weather with the lady at the supermarket checkout, yet I don’t really feel anything. At least, I don’t feel anything like the emotional wreck I used to be. You’d think that would be a good thing. Most doctors would hear me say that and think “well that’s great!”. But all that I am left with is a yearning for the sadness to come back to me. I miss being able to cry all the time. It made my life feel more meaningful I suppose. I don’t want to romanticise the illness, but I can’t help feeling nostalgic when I reflect on the last decade of my life, even though it was awful, even though at the time I desperately wanted to die, even with all the awfulness and screaming and the medication and the Ensure Plus being pumped into my stomach, I still think about all that and I want to go back. All my life involves now is dirty dishes and work rosters and mild problems that slightly inconvenience me (which, of course, I ignore until they have become much bigger problems).
I miss being sick and I miss being sad. I feel like a terrible person for saying those things, but it’s true. When I “recovered” I felt like I lost my best friend and life after that loss doesn’t really feel worth it at all.