“Write hard and clear about what hurts.” -Ernest Hemingway
As a small child I was encumbered with vivid and reoccurring nightmares. One nightmare in particular would become an ominous foreshadowing of my future. I can remember it starting around five or six years of age but perhaps it was always lurking.
My childhood bedroom was quite large and perfectly replicated to the tiniest detail in my dreams. I would stand at it’s center, small. The once sun filled space, with soft pink walls, would begin to seep itself in thick, black paint. The ceiling and walls would pour of themselves an inescapable black tar. I would stand there terror struck as the floor filled and the black tide rose.
I was unable to swim or break free of the heavy swell. Horrified I stood in the center becoming completely enveloped. The long and narrow windows that once let sunbeams stream through were overtaken. Even though I was only a small child and to a varying degree understood each time it was only a nightmare, I knew, this was the end.
I drowned over and over again until the nightmare faded with age.
For over 25 years I have sought out ways to purge myself of the murky sea that wanted to swallow me whole. Depression was never a black cloud hanging over my head. Depression was never a cloud, that from underneath an umbrella, you could seek refuge. It was an isolated room that held no light or escape. It was a dark, weighted thing that filled my lungs with every breath.
These days I choose to see the nightmare in a new perspective. I am no longer engulfed by an unknown and vile liquid. I am sitting at the bottom of the inkwell. As the words pour from my fingertips the tide shall lower.