“After 3 years of battling persistent depressive disorder, multiple relapses, drastic weight loss leading to anaemia and anorexia, I am still alive. I’m not spectacular, but I’m still alive.”
It felt pathetic, back then. I’m sure you feel the same too. Every minute of the day feels like it’s sucking the happiness out of you. I know what it feels to not want to get up once your eyes shut after 3 days of bare minimum sleep. Not because you have the ‘Monday blues’, but because every minute of the day for you is a shade card of blue. A blue that doesn’t calm. A blue that’s a raging storm waiting to engulf you in it. I know what feeling worthless tastes like. Not because you care too much about what others think about you, it’s only because you know you’re so much better than the place you’re currently at. But somehow, you can’t get your mind to believe it. For a brief moment, you feel no connection between your mind and body. Your mind is tricking you into believing you’ve seen everything, you’ve lived everything. But you haven’t. Oh boy, you haven’t!
7 years later, the fatter, healthier and happier I, eagerly awaits Sarabhai Vs Sarabhai’s web-series comeback. Pfft, come to think of it, I actually thought I’m done looking forward to anything in life then. (I literally survived two generations with this shit, cool right?)
I know, life looks like a bottomless pit that’s been sucking you into its filthy, nasty side and you’re trying really hard to resist it. You try fighting it, but eventually, give in to it. And it’s not because you’re done fighting, it’s because you think it’s easier this way. You let it win. That’s alright, there’s nothing wrong with giving in to pressure.
“But look up, it’s not over yet.”
You’re down there, in the deepest pit life has thrown you in yet, but you got to look up. Look up and see that tiny speck of light that’s not as bright as you’d like it to be, but it’s still there, waiting for you to reach out to it. Move towards it every day, one baby step at a time.
Hell No. I’m not going to tell you to snap out of it because you can’t. You’re going to want to think of everything horrible that’s been going on in your life. And how bad can it get? You didn’t get a perfect 100 that would’ve gotten you into a brilliant college? Neither did I, but I found the love of my life and my best friend in the ‘petty college’ I settled in. A London Degree Graduate and a ‘Petty College Graduate’, both work in the same company today. Guess who saved more money?
Oh wait, you probably lost someone, had a heart-break, went through something terrible you are definite you cannot come out of? So did I, 7 years later, I’m still here, meeting new people, making new memories, finding new ways to discover so many things life offers and using my biggest strength, writing, to let people know you’ll survive all of this.
“Just hang on there, just for a wee bit. I promise.”
Find new distractions who are going to end up becoming your solutions. Meet new people, make new friends. Even if they don’t have a face, that’s fine. If they don’t speak your language, that’s alright. If they’re not as available as you’d like them to be, it’s perfectly okay. As long as you have someone to share something with, you’re halfway there.
“Don’t look down yet.”
Wait, are you telling me you feel alone? But imagine so many people, feeling the same way as you do, sitting with you at the bottom of that pit, waiting to discover each other, find each other’s hand and hold it and get out of that pit together. Hang on there, buddy, it’ll take a while. But can I share a secret? There’s a way to reach there faster. All you need to do is tell yourself how amazingly you are holding on to whatever’s been going on with you lately. Treat yourself to something good every day. Let them be words of encouragement, a piece of pastry or that favourite chocolate, let it be anything. You deserve to celebrate it!
Pick up that phone, or open that laptop, and write whatever it is that you feel and send it to strangers. You don’t need to have friends to share what you’re going through. Put it in a comment, leave it under a thread.
“Seek love. There’s nothing wrong in seeking anything. For once, seek attention. You need it.”
We’ve had enough shit appearing on our news feed. We want to know what’s happening in your life now. We want to lead you outside the pit because you belong to this side, not the other.
In memory of Arjun Bharadwaj, who must have been a great son, a brilliant friend, a bright student in his own little way. What he lacked, wasn’t courage, what he lacked was a chance. A chance to re-write the last 10 minutes of his life. You have a chance to re-write yours. Get up, dust yourself, stand up with dignity, wipe your tears and everything you’ve allowed taking control over you. Face a new day and face a new challenge. Except, this time, make sure the challenge you’ve taken up is a new hobby.