Welcome to the Darkness

My own welcome into darkness happens twice a day.

 

Once in the morning, I pop a little white disc into my mouth and let it dissolve under the tongue.

 

Once in the evening, I pop a little white disc into my mouth and let it dissolve under the tongue.

 

I am welcomed into the darkness – like an old friend – with every pop and sizzle of the satiable withering away of a simple white disc.

 

I am welcomed home, where the ticking goes away but the screams grow louder.

 

I am welcomed home, where the creatures slither away but the colors intensify – my field of vision is streaked with lines of black and white and splashed with hints of grey.

 

These two little white discs

Stopped a life from living.

 

They stopped the sun from rising.

They stopped the shadows from fleeing.

They stopped a heart from beating.

 

These two little white discs

Stopped a life from living.

 

They begged me to fall silent.

They screamed, “Submit to the darkness!”

They cried black tears that stained my cheeks.

 

These two little white discs

Stopped a life from living,

But

I begged,

I screamed,

I cried –

And they stopped.

 

They fell silent.

 

These two little white discs

Stopped a life from living,

But not mine.

 

These two little white discs

Stopped a life from living,

 

But not mine.

 

Not mine.

 

These two little white discs

Are keeping me alive.

 

They help me pull breaths

Through broken ribs.

 

They scrub and wipe the walls

Of my mind clean, and replace

The dark crevices with

The light of love.

 

These two little white discs are keeping me alive.

 

Once in the morning, I pop a little white disc into my mouth and let it dissolve under the tongue.

 

Once in the evening, I pop a little white disc into my mouth and let it dissolve under the tongue.

 

Twice a day, I am welcomed home.

 

 

~~~

Sara Tirmizi inspired this poem through her piece A Letter to Depression; therefore I have taken lines from Sara’s piece and implemented them into this poem.

 I also drew inspiration from the line “their nightly welcoming to the darkness” from a piece called Stemmed from Wicked Desires, which was also written by Sara Tirmizi and Sajan Dhaliwal.

This poem was inspired by the raw emotion of A Letter to Depression, but also the fantastical yet creepy tone of Stemmed from Wicked Desires.  

I chose to write about my experience with antidepressants, and how I had originally thought that the side effects of the medication were killing me more than the depression was. However, after speaking with health care professionals, I was able to understand and manage the side effects of the medication through another outlet – writing.

I transferred the feelings I had about my depression and antidepressants into words. I developed a blog that I feel is the physical manifestation of my journey with mental illness. 

All of this has helped me become the person I am today. I am the happy and kind individual because I have gone through the sadness and anger of depression. I have traded in my swords for roses and I give my roses to help those who truly need it because not everyone needs to go through what I have.

 Depression and mental illness are not to be stigmatized by a society who values someone’s sack of bones more than a healthy head. Mental health is to be talked about in schools, at work, and at home: individuals struggling with mental illness need to know that they have the world standing behind them – waiting to catch them if they fall, and hoping that they don’t.

 Mental health is just as important as physical health, so why is it that we expect a student with a broken bone to “take it easy” while the student living with depression is expected to perform just as well as the student who lives free from depression? 

I wrote this poem, despite not being comfortable speaking about my experience with mental illness, because I am tired of being scared of what other people will say when they find out about my past. The people who judge me have no right to, and I need people to see and understand that. There is nothing wrong with having a mental illness. There is nothing wrong. Nothing.

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2 thoughts on “Welcome to the Darkness

  1. Victoria,

    This is what I believe to be only my second experience with your poetry but I have to say I’m already craving more. I love the way you structured your work here, which I felt gave so much emphasis on the words you were speaking. Not to mention, the mixture of aphorisms (which help us understand others) and your axioms (which help readers get to know you) was fantastic. The meaningful message in your work has certainly been portrayed.

    Thank you for writing this beautiful piece, and putting out a piece of your heart on your blog. I can’t imagine how much courage it took, and you are certainly so beautifully strong for doing so. People should be exposed to stories that take this topic and realize that the stigma behind mental illness needs to be discussed, in order for change to occur.

    Ahhhh, I don’t want to give you grows nor do I notice much! I’ll have to be picky, and in result might be wrong with what I’m about to say. As a grow, I would say that repetition can be really hard to work with. You don’t want writing *overflowing with it and instead require it for emphasis. If there is too much is can disrupt the *flow (*how ironic). Not that I thought you didn’t use repetition well, but it’s just a piece of advice I would give from personal experience 🙂

    Lastly, the past does not define you. It helped you become who you are today, and shouldn’t be looked down upon nor does it diminish your worth. Every part of you deserves to be loved. Those who do not realize this do not deserve the love you give.

    I’m so glad I was given the chance to read your blog. Thank you, once again, for writing such a beautiful piece.

    Love,
    Elissa

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