I am asked, repeatedly.
“What do you think was the cause?”
I’ve spent years asking myself the same question. Years in therapy, examining the routes and structures of my psyche, fruitlessly digging for some buried treasure that would reveal the truth I’d been looking for. Probing and questioning the hows and the whys of my very being. I write this nonsense, examining my thoughts and feelings, attempting to get some deeper grasp of what might cause this malaise. But you know what? Sometimes, those barren years of searching, that ill-fated quest that once sang with possibility and fabled discovery exists purely so that you might come to terms with the absence. Your journey was back to the start, to that initial question – Why? And your answer? Because.
Because this is the way you are. Perhaps this is the way we all are. Some are better at hiding it. Some are oblivious. But we all feel the pull. The urge to self-destruction. It’s endlessly difficult attempting to decipher the minds of those not tainted by the same poison that possesses me, but I imagine there is an inversion somewhere.
The question, “What do you think triggered it?” relies on the belief, the understanding that this is an aberrant state of mind, that this perception of the world is in some way, faulty and any slip into the aforementioned view must have been caused by some sort of traumatic event, that the veil that separates our mundane and petty lives from the existential horror that lurks beneath, the sheer unadulterated meaningless of our existence, is covering an unnatural state of being.
I find myself here, again, as depression takes hold and it feels… right? This is the way things are. Everything else is a distraction. How do you explain that? This: the endless confrontation with the barren and empty nature of my being is the constant, the immutable thread of my life. No matter what I attempt, regardless my successes or failures, I will find myself back, in this place, gazing into the nothingness that threatens at every step to consume me.
I do my best. I’m always trying. But how long can this go on? How can you explain that there is no trigger? There is no cause, no inciting moment, but instead, a slow peeling away, the gradual erosion of the person you’d imagined you’d become, the person that was over this, the person who could deal with this shit.
I’ve managed to rebuild, claw myself out of this black hole God knows how many times in the last 20 years. I’ll do it again. I’m sure of that. This time will not kill me. But I’ll be back here, soon enough, it might be months, it might be years, but this place isn’t leaving me, there is no trigger, only the slow decay of everything I’d believed myself to be. In a way, it’s freeing, I can let go. But how much do I lose each time?