Written By - Tessa Cash

I don’t know how to begin to write this. I feel as though for the umpteenth time I have drifted far from myself. Small tasks feel mountainous. Energy. Where has it gone? Where has my zest for life disappeared to? Where have I gone? I don’t know. I’m lost in an all too familiar fog. I feel alone. Very alone. But being around others feels too immense. Taking a load of clothing out of the washing machine feels as though I’ve been asked to run a marathon. Dealing with the intense energy that seems to circulate London keeps me close to the safety of my flat. Energy. Where has mine gone?

I’m tired all the time. Tired of traveling. Tired of packing. Tired of washing my hands to rid myself of imaginary germs that I think I need to protect myself from. I’m tired of worrying, of stressing, of constantly having to be places on time. I’m tired of counting. Counting the reps I have lifted, tired of pushing myself to do more, five more, two more, eight more minutes on the bike…push, push, push. I’m tired of making mistakes. I’m tired of loving and not being loved back. Of constantly feeling bad for choices I have made that others don’t approve of. I’m tired of not having a home. Of not having a purpose. Of being too fat, or too thin, or too sensitive, of giving too much. Of constantly comparing myself to others. I’m even tired of being kind.

These feels aren’t new. They creep up on me every so often and take over every so subtly so I fail to notice until it is almost too late. I guess I could dose myself up on SSRI’s as I have done so intermittently in the past. I could use sugar as a bandaid and watch myself balloon in size thus cultivating a vicious cycle of self loathing and contempt, But I’ve been down those roads before and I know they don’t bide well. I could also pack up my bags again and run far away from here. I’ve done that a few times before too. The problem is you can’t run from yourself. The unhappiness is within you, only you can fix it by facing the cold hard truth of the root of the issue. Running is a temporary distraction, a quick fix. So is sugar. So are booze and drugs and sex. In my experience they have set me back by wasting more time, more money and more self esteem. I probably would have been an alcoholic if it weren’t for my eating disorder. I probably would have died from a meth or heroin overdose if I hadn’t been afraid of needles and my depression hadn’t stopped me from socialising with the wrong people. And I guess I could become obese and hide my pain behind sumptuous layers of protective fat cells (just to preface; this statement is a super personal reflection of my relationship with food and is not a commentary on any one else’s existence), but there is a tiny little part of me that still wants to fight. That doesn’t want to give up. That wants to release all the pain and move forward with life and achieve what truly makes me happy. Even if that begins by posting a very raw and vulnerable blog post.

So I said it. I slipped it in there before. Depression. What the fuck does that even mean? If the above psychobabble doesn’t accurately illustrate how complex and personal depression is then I don’t know what will. I don’t know if it was Jim Carey who coined the phrase or if it was circulating beforehand but in some YouTube video he talks about his battle with this mind disease as a person being in need of “deep rest.” I resonate so hard with this sentiment. Jeff Foster (I don’t know who that is, but I feel like I need to credit his quote because manners), talks about how it is a state of being “pressed down” due to the weight of the false self, the mask, the mind-made story of ‘me’.” Okay thanks Jeff, but who am I then? I didn’t find my identity in Jesus or God or Christianity or religion. I don’t think life should be about surrender your personal power over to a deity and hoping that if you’ll follow the rules this deity has set out for you then you’ll secure a nice little place in paradise for yourself. Astrology began to drive me insane because knowing the future or pre-emptying what might or might not happen on any given day seems like a bonafide way to drive yourself straight to crazy town. But I guess if there is any thing that I have learnt from this season I find myself in, it is that all you can do is try. M taught me that. Not only in his words and in the way he carries out his existence, but in the realisation that came when I started to see life from his point of view. I nonstop worry about things. Thoughts constantly permeate my brain and scare me into not doing, not enjoying, not feeling capable. Life is about freedom, living in the present and making the most of the time one has been given. Being positive and grateful for what you have and working within those bounds and utilising the gifts and strengths that make your soul different to anyone else’s is not only the purpose but also the obligation you owe yourself. Life is about joy and love and fun. Not about being weighed down by expectation or a false self. A self that has been constructed by the world’s incessant need to tell you what is best. The evolution of the soul is about inwardly looking out, not outwardly looking in. It is about being brave enough to strip away all the secular bullshit we are convinced we need and focus on the raw spirit song we were meant to sing. So I think I’m going to try looking into my soul and asking her what she desires instead of constantly seeking outside answers in hope that the heaviness, the darkness and the loneliness will fade away when I finally, at almost thirty years old, begin to really see and value myself exactly as I am.