The Harrowing Void

The Void

I woke up like this.  I can’t even begin to explain it but I know that I definitely woke up like this.  And I feel the need to tell you about it.  I need to tell you about it because not many people are aware that this is how depression can affect people.  So this is an ad-hoc post, not one that’s been pre-written, pre-planned and neatly scheduled in as business per usual. No, this is the account of the harrowing void, the tale that is buried in me, burning in me today.

As I said: I woke up like this.  I don’t know why because I slept reasonably well for me.  Even my insomnia couldn’t keep me awake for long.  More than that, I dreamt for the first time in what feels like forever.  A bizarre, convoluted and completely random dream with a mix of random people, admittedly, but a dream nonetheless.  So it wasn’t sleep that precipitated this.  So what did?  Moreover, what even is this that I refer to?

It’s the void.

How am I feeling today?  The answer: empty.  There is nothing inside.  No emotions, no thoughts, no feelings, just nothingness.  A harrowing void that is sucking everything out of me.  Enthusiasm, motivation, emotion, energy, excitement, everything…gone.  Wiped out.  Almost as though someone has detonated some black hole inside my head.  But it’s more than that.  Much more than that.

I’m empty inside.

Not just my head.  No, my mind is empty but it’s more.  I feel as though there’s a cavity in my chest.  Not the usual chest cavity, as you don’t tend to notice that, but an emptiness almost like a hole in my heart.  I know there should be feelings or emotions there but there are none.  No joy or sorrow, no fear or anxiety, absolutely nothing.

I’m empty.

Driven Impulses

Occasional small thoughts skim the surface of my mind as I sit here, numb and empty.  For the most part, they are trying to figure out why I’m like this, although as of yet that’s proving to be a futile attempt.  Some of the thoughts skittering across the void are driving me towards self-harm. Somehow, they reason, that will make things better.

I know it won’t.

But they tell me it will.

I know that harming myself will hurt both me and others in the process. People will be sad that I’ve turned back to that once more but where I am at the moment, that seems like the only surefire release for the emptiness. After all, pain is a guaranteed way of feeling something, is it not?  Yes, I’ll feel guilt afterwards, the lingering pain of the cuts and the shame of having fallen again, but it would still guarantee I feel.  More than that, it might even snap me out of this numb funk that I’m in.

A part of me wants to give in.  I’ve still got scars and they bring me that comfort of knowing my mental illness is real but that’s not why I’d want to do it this time.  No, there is a much more harrowing reason of why I’d want to give into those nagging thoughts this time.

Even the guilt and shame I’d feel afterwards would be better than the void.

That’s right, even those negative feelings would be better than feeling nothing.

A Harrowing Void

Do you see why it’s harrowing?  Do you see why some people will turn to physical harm in order to shake the feeling?  It’s clawing at me, eating me alive from the inside out.  Nothing I can think of seems good enough to save me from this.  Computer games, films, TV programmes, simply lying in bed (which I’ve already done plenty of this morning – thanks to lethargy!) and playing music, none of these seem like they are going to lift me.  Even seeing some of my favourite people don’t seem to be making me feel anything.  The only possibility seems to be the blade.  The blade.

I am empty.

I am a shell.

The void is eating me alive.

And I can’t shake it.

I can’t shake it.

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Become a PatronDisclaimer: I am not an expert, nor am I medically qualified.  This blog is based on my personal experiences only.  Always seek medical advice in the first instance.

Author: Alex Davies

Alex Davies is the creator and writer for Pushing Back the Shadows. Find out more about his journey here and connect with him on Facebook, Google+ and Twitter.

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