Mental Health Awareness Week.
Cleaning out my room at the uni accommodation was such a relief. I walked back in with a heavy heart- my room, where I would sometimes spend 3-4 nights in a row in a catatonic state, wondering what the difference is between life and death, if there even is any. My cave of depression, where my nightmares came to life. I can tell you, that there is nothing more freeing than throwing away the empty alcohol bottles that gifted you liquid, short-term freedom during your darkest times.
I am going back to university again and there is a high chance I will drag my feet back to the flat, just to remind myself of the ugly mess that I left behind. Of course, it wasn’t all that bad, there were definitely some happy memories and I am so thankful for having known my flatmates and for the much needed support that I received from them.
London holds a special place in my heart. I moved here upon my own initiative. No one chose this city for me, so it felt more like a home. I made a naive assumption that the busy lifestyle of living in a metropolitan city would spare no time for me to be depressed or think about death. But, there is so much time. There is so much time when you are waiting at the underground tube station to think about how you can jump straight into the rail tracks and end it all. There is so much time when you are waiting at the traffic signals to think about how you can walk right in front of a bus and allow it to shatter your skull. There is so much time when you are walking over a bridge to look down on River Thames and fantasise about your body floating on it as if it had finally gone to sleep. This was the city where I found myself and it chained my feet so I could not run anymore, I could not hide anymore. You cannot run away from your mental illness and you cannot keep pretending that a change in your surroundings will change who you are. Surprisingly, you feel even lonelier in a city as populated as London because all around you see these busy bodies moving in an out of the trains holding their cup coffee and briefcase and you think to yourself, “why has time stopped for me? why me?”
So, I didn’t make it through first year. It wasn’t because I found my studies too difficult, or I missed my family too much, but because of suddenly realising that I had found everything that I was looking for and yet I was not ready to have my prayers answered in such fashion. I didn’t sit my exams, I cannot face being in that situation again and I wonder if every year the thought of sitting an exam will provoke my anxiety and depression. It wasn’t always like this, you know.
This year, I am being tested on something different, something that’s far more important and valuable, the result of which most certainly, literally determines my future- or rather, whether I have one or not.
Falling back in love with someone who has broken your heart is difficult. It’s a hundred times harder when that someone is yourself.