I carry a thousand tons, at times, when I feel it starts to get lighter, another thousand is added onto my shoulders and my body can no longer bear it. I march on, my knees shake, my eyes shedding small tears streaming down my red face, my heart is aching but, I wear the mask. The mask looks like my face, the happier version of my face. Round cheeks, freckled face with big beaming blue eyes with yellow hidden, that shine in the sun and a big smile I cannot stand to view in the mirror.
Some days I don’t notice it. Almost in denial that I don’t struggle. “Hello, did you forget I was still here?” It says to me, interrupts me, as I am trying to enjoy a moment with someone I love or alone at peace (or so I thought) it just springs out of the darkness and decides to dance around me in circles. I am in the centre of this mockery. I yell at the top of my lungs “STOP IT, GET OUT OF MY HEAD” I almost ripped my skin apart.
It continues to laugh, tease and taunt me as I crumbled. I hide myself under the covers. It’s warm. My heavy breathing hurts my chest. I peak over the covers.
The room is empty. It’s just me, alone.
I lay there staring aimlessly around my room. I’m angry. How did I let myself get here again? I hear footsteps approaching my door.
“Honey, would you like to grab a coffee with me?”
“Sure, be out in a minute”
I stay in the same position, compose myself, wipe the tears, put my mask on again and go get myself a coffee.
. . .
Dedicated to Photographer Matt Irwin who inspired this piece and unfortunately took his life due to Depression.