The Meltdown That Made Me Realize I Was Actually Getting Better


It is 1:32 a.m. My windows are open. The night is cool. My light is on and I’m laying in bed still in the clothes I was in when I came home at 10:30 p.m. from work. I know that I smell like coffee and chocolate and possibly a bit sweaty, but my nose is too clogged from my allergies to smell anything at all. I am scrolling through Facebook, the little pictures and words going too fast for my eyes to actually recognize who I’m seeing and for my brain to actually process what I’m reading. From the outside, all is well.

On the inside, I am screaming. I want to cry. I want to throw things. I want to wake everyone up. I want to break things. I want to bang my head against the wall until I can process nothing but the pain.

I want, I want, I want turns into I need, I need, I need.

Instead, I lay very still. My fingers continue to flick upwards. I scroll faster. I have never felt more comforted by the steady blue bar on the top of the page. No matter how quickly I scroll, it will remain.

I count my tabs. Twenty.

I count them again.

I count them again.

I count them again.

I am still screaming.

I pull up my notes and think about the things I need to do. Take a shower. Take your medication. Go to sleep.

The cursor blinks, and my fingers are poised to begin typing. They find my trackpad. I find the red x. I am staring at Facebook again.

I count them again. My fingers clench and unclench.

I count them again. This time, I mouth the words but no sounds emerge. For now, the feeling of my lips moving to form the familiar shapes of the numbers is enough.

I count past 20 until I reach 300.

I try to think about what to do next. My mind is blank. I try again. I try again. I try again.

I am crying. Sound has yet to emerge. I try to think about why I am sad.

I have not showered in two days.

Strike one.

I have not worked out in two weeks.

Strike two.

I have not been consistently taking my medication.

Strike three.

I’m out.

Suddenly, it’s not a mystery anymore. For a fleeting moment, I am proud of myself for being able to recognize it.

I get out of bed and walk to the other side of my room, stepping over the clothes scattered all over my floor until I arrive to the full body mirror hanging on my bathroom door.

For a moment, I am back in college. For a moment, I want to throw myself onto the floor and wait for the morning to come. For a moment, I am completely and utterly disgusted with myself. But then my eyes find the black scribbles on my mirror.

“You are beautiful.”

“Smile sunshine.”

“The reflection in this mirror does not reflect your self worth.”

I think back to a happier day when I took my sharpie and quickly scribbled these messages along my mirror. I knew I would need them.

I find my own eyes and hold my own gaze. I do not know how long I stand there for.

It feels like an eternity before I break the silence of the night with a voice I do not initially recognize as my own.

“Thank you.”

If you or someone you know needs help, visit our suicide prevention resources page.

If you struggle with self-harm and you need support right now, call the crisis hotline at 1-800-273-8255 or text “START” to 741-741. For a list of ways to cope with self-harm urges, click here.

We want to hear your story. Become a Mighty contributor here.

Thinkstock photo via alien185


Find this story helpful? Share it with someone you care about.


Related to Depression

girl face

What I Actually Hear When You Ask Me 'What's Wrong?'

There is pain in my eyes, but the corners of my mouth are forced up into a smile. Never one to settle, but today I am OK with being content. Why? Because I know the extremes of the spectrum. I know the struggle of giving 110 percent just to get up. I am accustomed to [...]
a man cringing. Text reads: 17 surprising physical symptoms of depression

17 Surprising Physical Symptoms of Depression

Editor’s note: If you struggle with self-harm, the following post could be potentially triggering. You can contact the Crisis Text Line by texting “START” to 741-741. For a list of ways to cope with self-harm urges, click here. People often mistakingly view depression as simply an emotion. Sad, low, down, numb — however we describe it, [...]
close up of a woman

It's Time to Change Our 'Black and White' View of Depression

I’ve decided to make this post because I’ve noticed there’s still a large stigma when it comes to mental health and specifically depression. I think the stigma stems from not only lack of knowledge and understanding of depression, but also fear — “What if one day that could happen to me?” Well if it makes [...]
dishevelled woman in striped vest with hand in hair

The Truth About Depression and Personal Hygiene

There are many things about depression that are hard to face; many truths that are swept under the rug for many reasons. One truth I believe isn’t addressed enough is hygiene — personal hygiene. With how much our culture focuses on appearances, any thought of admitting bad hygiene habits is embarrassing. Not just embarrassing, mortifying, and not a [...]