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Apathy Girl and Other Tales

Musings of the Overly Naive Cynic

I want to be heart broken.

I have spent, conservatively, the last six out of eight years of my life beyond heart broken. Soaking in depression, despair, and non-feeling. Mostly the latter. I went through three years of a fairly serious mental breakdown that sidetracked my entire life. Another year wondering why all of those people who were supposed to care about me did not save me from drowning, or at least swim out to meet me. Two years trying to recover and put my house right. (It isn’t, in case you were wondering. The mistakes we makes as youths tend to follow us, there is no such thing as a fresh start as an obligated supposed adult.)

People ask what happened to me, why. You say depression and they automatically think, well I’ve been sad too but I didn’t seek out abusive relationships, alcohol, and the warm embrace of oblivion. I didn’t cut myself off from my family hoping, praying they would notice and do something about it. But depression isn’t sadness. It is nothing. It is a dark room with a melodic downbeat.

That was then.

And now?

And now.

I came upon an old Ray LaMontagne song. It made my heart expand, swell with elegy. Until tears pricked the back of my eyes. Until my voice began to become undone. Until my fingers trembled. Until… I realized I had nothing to write about. I have no verses. I have no pain.

So, this must be what happiness feels like? I sat there, examining my limbs, making sure I was intact after my escape from the dark room. Career moving forward? Check. Relationship with estranged parent? Check. Fulfilling friendships? Check. Fun hobby? Check. Romantic partner? Shhh, I’ve answered enough questions for now.

Yes. I am happy. How could I not be? I lived so isolated within myself for so long, how could I not be happy? It would take a self-important, -involved,-infatuated,-infuriating woman to not be happy.

I spend much of my time biting my tongue. Trying not to be myself even in the smallest of ways so as not to jeopardize my happiness. Trying not to admit that I am, once again, to a lesser extent, isolated inside myself. It puts an asterisk next to each of those check marks.

That is the funnyhahayourdogisdead thing about depression, though. It seeks to be heard. I know I should not want to be heart broken, filled with an aching nothingness. That it is an affront to all of those who have less than I do. I know I have had my break down. I have lost and subsequently regathered my shit. I am chemically balanced.

However, temperate, melodic, glorious nothingness will find you no matter how much Top 40 music you listen to. If you cannot speak, if you cannot find yourself within the life you have constructed, if you are surrounded in silence, existing in a space where your true self is not welcome… Well then you might start to hum. And the song I have started to hum is oddly familiar. I am trying hard to sing something different, as loud as I can.

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