Monday, 17 November 2014

An Ocean of Darkness

People see the smile outside. No one sees the darkness inside. Not just a spot or two of darkness. A whole ocean of darkness. I am drowning in it. Many times I’ve tried to keep my head above. Many times I’ve resurfaced when I couldn’t keep my head up and had gone down under. But every time I go under, I find resurfacing a little more difficult than the last time. Every time I go under, I need to hold my breath. For letting go of my breath means letting go of my life. If I let the air leave my lungs, my lungs, starved of air and strained with the effort of holding out on their own, are programmed to suck in the dark waters. Dark waters of the ocean of darkness. And once the darkness enters my body through my lungs……my lungs starved of breath, know nothing else but that it is time to tell me that this is what drowning is. Like, “I’m sorry but I’ve failed. I held out very long but, starved of air, the need to suck in whatever was available to fill myself up, was pressing. Just like a hungry child feels compelled to devour rotten remnants of other people’s meals to fill up his empty stomach.”

The suffocating dark waters swirl around, all around. I flail my arms and legs about. My strength ebbs with all the effort. My muscles, devoid of oxygen, also begin to start giving up. But some point of light in some recess in my brain pushes me to exert myself once more. With this psychic strength, I push down with all my remaining energy and resurface. After resurfacing, every initial breath is painful. My lungs, my heart, my nose, my eyes, my ears; all hurt. Slowly, with great effort, the breathing becomes normal and the pain recedes. But then, I am not as strong as I was before I went under, am I? There is wear and tear of my muscles, everywhere, from my extremities to my lungs and heart. There is nothing out there to replenish the energy store. So the muscles never recover, however much the body may want them to.

And then, when the next wave of darkness rushes towards me, I find it more difficult to brace myself. The entire process of holding out and fighting the wave, then going under when that fails, and then resurfacing, and then returning to a semblance of normality, leaves me even more depleted of energy than the time before. The process goes on without a break. My body is tired. My mind is tired too. My spirit is probably the point of light in my brain which pushes me to fight each time, despite knowledge of the inevitable outcome.

This point of light too, is dimming with each episode. The body and mind try to put some more oil into the burning lamp. Meditation, writing, playing, yoga, spirituality. They are all supposed to give strength to the flame inside my brain, to what I think is my spirit. Sometimes they work, sometimes they don’t. The number of times they work is fast reducing while the number of times they don’t is accelerating like a car with the gas pedal pressed all the way down to the floor. So the light gets dimmer and dimmer. And when it goes out, I may find the ocean of darkness, surrounding me, too comforting to be worth fighting against. My body, dead tired; my mind, totally blank; and my spirit, out. Oh look, the ocean bed tempts. How nice would it be to just lie down there, curled up like a new born. How nice would it be not to fight any more. How nice would it be not to make an effort any more. How nice would it be to feel no pain. How nice would it be to float, weightlessly, in the darkness. Float and float and float. To let it guide and let me follow. To let it cushion me from all that lies above. To let me be. Just let it be.

PS : Please don't give up........perhaps there will be a day when the waves of darkness shall recede.....and you have to keep fighting to see the light of THAT day.


  1. Very vivid, very honest. Thank you for sharing what is going on in the innermost recesses. As souls we are all connected, and this description could very well be mine, or that of my neighbour. Thank you for your candour.

    1. Thanks again...was quite touched by your words.....