let me drown in pillows
i’ll sink into the blankets
and let the storm pass overhead
memory foam seas take me away
let the bed frame be my lifeboat
and the headboard a gravestone
“here lies someone who tried
and who was never good enough”
curtains drawn and light dim
the sound of life moves by
there are sirens in the distance
but their music comes too late
i’m already too far into the depths
to be dragged down any further
they sing and fade away
and i lay dashed upon the rocks
never to return home
and never to leave my sea bed
i remember the days of joy
when the voyage was not so brutal
and we looked on to distant skies
with the innocence of youth
“ah. so beautiful,” we cried
“so much possibility
so much wonder”
so much for hope.
It might not surprise you to know that, lately, I’ve been feeling really run down. As I was lying in bed letting misery get the better of me, I had the passing thought of sinking into the softness of the mattress. Then I had a second passing thought that if I stayed in bed like I was doing, nothing would ever change.
Writing is pretty amazing in a lot of ways. Stories help us escape our reality, but the process of writing is therapeutic. I’ve been a huge proponent of writing therapy for many years, now. I’ve used it in my own life, as I did with this poem, but I also advocated for writing therapy in my professional career as a grant writer at a behavioral health nonprofit. There is so much science behind the benefits that writing provides to people experiencing depression, especially with regard to learning and practicing the technical skills of writing.
Today I was sad, and that sadness caused me to unexpectedly spiral back into the gloom-dungeon that is my depression. Writing helps me find the way out again. If you’re going through something similar, I recommend taking fifteen minutes out of your day to write out whatever it is that you feel. Let the writing carry away the pain so you can see beyond it.
And always remember that if you’re having a hard time or considering taking your own life, please seek help. Ask friends or family if you’re able. Find a behavioral health clinic or therapist in your area that can see you right away. Or, if you don’t have access to family or a therapist who can help, go to a local emergency room and let them know what you’re going through. They can help provide you with the resources you need to make it through. You’re worth it. (Call or text 988 to reach the national suicide and crisis hotline.)