The Cave of Silence

I wrote this on the 18th of March. I am no longer in the midst of my depressive episode, but I am not fully out of it. Everything I wrote then in this piece is still true, if slightly out of sync with real time.

I am in the midst of a major depressive episode. I want to blog about this, but I feel like my vocal chords have been cut. I feel like I can’t speak, can’t type. Can’t communicate.

I’ve navigated the caves of my depression many times; I know these walls. I’ve hung pictures on them.

This is a new area. I haven’t been here before. This is my first trip into the cave of silence. A gag was tied around my mouth when I entered and I cannot remove it; without my voice I cannot speak the word that will set me free.

I am stuck in this cave and I sit on its floor, looking around, wondering what I’ll do to redecorate. All I can hear is the constant screaming inside my own head. No other noise can penetrate it.

I cannot be scared. I cannot be sad. I cannot feel anything, because I cannot say anything.

I am a person who processes emotions and thoughts by saying them, either out loud or in text. Things become real when I say them. In the past, when I would start having romanto-sexual feelings for people I knew, if it were inappropriate for whatever reason, if I *did not want that particular crush*, I would not speak of my feelings. Not even to myself. And it would keep the feelings small enough to not overpower me. They would not become real. I would not fall head over heels — when I fall, I fall hard, fast. The cave of unrequited love is off to the left. I’ve got some pillows and a couch in there.

I say “I love you” over and over to those I do love, because if I stop saying it, it stops being real.

Words validate my reality.

And I cannot speak.

I’m wondering if this is a blessing in disguise. If the thoughts I’m having right now are so dangerous to me I should not give them voice, because I will hurt myself. If I cannot speak to my friends to protect them as much as myself.

Maybe the cave of silence is not a prison, but a hospital bed where I will stay until the screaming stops.

Maybe I can finally rest here.

I am so weary of talking over the screaming, of trying to make myself heard.

Yes, a pillow, and blankets. A bed. That is how I will redecorate the cave of silence. I will make it a sanctuary.

It is all I can do with the rooms of my depression.