In a single moment, I forget the breathing exercises, and the rational thought practice. I forget the therapist’s direct line, and the holding-ice-in-your-hand trick. I forget the Ativan in the medicine cabinet. And, most of all, I forget your love.
Instead, I make things up: that I annoy you, that you hate me, that your life would be so much better without me in it. I know it; I believe it—I am ruining your life.
In the moment, there is no love. There is only emptiness, loneliness, and pain. I don’t think of your face, and the letter you wrote me. I don’t think of your pain, because my own is just too strong.
I start to wonder: is it my fault when I spiral down into such a dark place? Am I not trying hard enough? Am I doing something wrong?
I clench and unclench my fists. I kick my legs. I break things and scream, in my mind. On the outside, I cry so hard that I can barely breathe.
You ask me, frantically, to stop, and I choke out the words: I can’t. I’m sorry.
But you don’t even know what I’m sorry for. You don’t know that I am desperate, instead of merely depressed. Because how could you know, if I don’t tell you?
I hold on to you, my anchor. And all I feel is guilt. That I could leave you behind, to escape my pain. That I could even think such awful things.
How do you remember love when you feel hopeless? How do you remember love when you forget what it feels like to be happy? When you feel lonely, even knowing that you are not alone?
I try to fight the thoughts in my own mind.
And I hope against hope that remembering your love will save me, like it has so many times before.