I can only assume that someone stole my mind, I have no memory of when it happened. That’s the part I struggle desperately to find, that time, those days, weeks, months even years that I have lost along the way. I have no recognition of my childhood and it saddens me when friends talk fondly of those times when they were young and carefree, I was once young I know that much, I guess I was just never free.
I look at photographs where I am there, yet I don’t feel any connection to the person starting back at me. I search for feelings, emptions, there are none. I feel nothing towards the young girl in those pictures. She looks like me, yet that remains the only recognisable feature. I don’t know who she is.
I would also say that depression and I crossed paths or came to loggerheads in my adult days, yet at the tender age of just thirteen I lay cold stone dead on a mortuary slab. Or in hindsight that’s where I should have been, somehow the large dose of Paracetamol didn’t kill me and I lived, much to my own disgust.
I have never been free, I have no idea what the word even means. I have always been trapped inside my mind. What is is like to be free, how does it feel? I imagine a bird with its wings spread wide darting through the air., at peace with itself. I have never felt like I could fly, the wings I have are patched with so many bandages and sticky plasters, they are to heavy to hold up.
I have never dared fly, I fear too much of the world around me. Take away the hypo-mania episode where the voices told me that if I jumped from the window ledge I sat perched on one evening, that I really could fly. I have never been that fond of heights anyway, so being free is not a dream I chase, or is it?
Would my life be more fulfilled if I was able to be free? How would I live if I was the one in complete control? For the most part of my life I have always had to rely on other forms to enable the outcome. What if I could decide my fate?
Depression, mania, depression, bipolar, call it what you may, mental illness has always controlled me. I know no different. Yet I sit and I wonder what my life would have been like had it not have chosen to take me as a prisoner. I feel trapped, a prisoner inside my own head at times. It becomes a frustration that often turns to anger and where the need to punish myself comes from.
Was I weak? Did it witness the vulnerability that surrounded me and I became an easy target? I guess that is how it happens in reality and as I sit and watch in oar at my thirteen year old daughter I feel the tears well inside my eyes. The heavy sickening thud hits my stomach and I want to throw up. I am so sad, confused, angry that as I look at the beautiful young lady in front of me, with so much to live for, holding fast to so many dreams, she smiles. The sparkle in her eyes says it all, she is happy, she is young and more importantly she is free. What did my parents see when they looked at me at her age?
I have lost so much, yet gained so much in return.
I am learning that I am in control, despite having to fight for it. That everything that has happened in my life, I have had some control, even if small, I still played a part in those choices. When those voices still come at night to tell me I am worthless, I tell them I am not.
It has taken me almost 19 years to finally realize that I can be free, I just have to learn how to fly. This little bird is beginning to strip away the plasters holding her wounds together and becoming lighter as she goes. I hope one day, I can spread my wings, until that day I will keep fighting to break down the netting that cages me in.
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