Thursday, October 26, 2006

Day 67

‘If at first you don’t succeed, try, try, try again.’ Hmmm. Are you sure? How about ‘If at first you don’t succeed, fall into your bed, pull the duvet up over your head and wait there till the thing you were trying to do, goes away…’

Some of those that are paid to give good advice, in a therapeutic format, have suggested that I may not ‘want’ to get better. I always honour such statements with the disdain I feel is appropriate. However, there is always that gnawing feeling in the pit of my stomach that suggests I might think they are right. Who would I actually be without my depression? It defines my every move. It defines who I am when I wake up in the morning and who I am when I go to bed at night. It is the reason that I hide away in my house, the reason that I have put on weight. The reason that I am single, and above all the reason that I am not doing anything with my life that I truly want to.

My depression is not a visible thing, so the scars on my hands and arms are there to define the depression. They are there to remind me that the reason for all of the above is because I have an illness, not that I am just lazy or incapable and unmotivated. (Like I think I am on a daily basis. Oh the contradictions…) Perhaps it is not just a co-incidence that when the scars begin to heal – I self harm again?

I read this recently in the Guardian - the context being, Shantell, 28, who suffers from anorexia, discussing her own self-harming scars - “Sometimes when I see the cuts, I’m afraid it’s going to interfere with relationships. Who wants to see that on their lover? Other times I embrace it as part of me. Even though I’m not 100% better, it reminds me of where I’ve come from. Of what I’ve survived.”

Occasionally I can understand what she means. Other times, I’m not so sure. A male friend of mine once said, “maybe someone would find them quite interesting?” when I was bemoaning that no man would come near me, (with a barge pole) with scars like mine. I instantly thought he was meaning a pervert that might be into pain, but maybe he was thinking that someone might find it interesting to see where I had come from, and what I had survived…? I can only live in hope.

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