I Want to Erase Myself

August 24, 2010

I don’t think I’ve written about this yet, but I’ve been meaning to for quite a while.  I’ve been putting it off because it sums up how I was feeling at the height (depth?) of my depression. A few years back, I heard something from a woman who had struggled with an incredible amount of abuse, alcoholism, depression, and probably more I don’t know about.  She said a lot about where she was in her journey right then and what a hard time she was having.  I don’t remember any words except for:

“I want to erase myself.”

I remember those words because she put most of my life into words.  For the vast majority of my life, I didn’t want to have things get better necessarily, or to have more friends, or to have been born into a different family, or even to kill myself.  I simply wanted to have never existed.  To be able to erase myself completely, with no trace.  I’ve always been realistic enough to know that people would miss me if I died, but erasing myself — erasing any effect I had ever had, anything I had ever done, and anyone I had ever been — seemed like the only solution.  When I was thinking and saying that I wished I was dead, I think I really meant that I wished I had never even been thought of.

I haven’t felt that way in over a year and a half and I can’t completely remember the feeling, but I can remember enough to panic.  I can remember just enough to be really profoundly sad.  And to wonder why anyone at all should have to want to erase themselves — while believing in a God who loves me.  It was too much.  It’s gone and it’s still too much sometimes.

Heart Pain

August 2, 2010

Sometimes when I was really depressed, my heart would hurt.  I don’t mean that I was sad – although I was.  Or, more hopeless than sad.  Despairing.  But my heart would hurt like I was having a heart attack.  I would sometimes just sit clutching my chest because the pain was so strong.  That wasn’t the only physical symptom I had . I would also sometimes have trouble seeing.  I would think that there was something wrong with my contacts because everything was blurry, and then remember that I was wearing my glasses.  I would have to squint to see things and think about what I was looking at because a trash can could look like a mailbox.  My brain wasn’t working correctly.  I’m finding that – not having been depressed for a year and a half now – I don’t really remember what these symptoms felt like.  It was a terrifying combination though, both the physical symptom and then the feeling that I was going crazy.

Has anyone else experienced symptoms like this?