To my friends (an update which I’ll never actually send to the letter which I’ve never actually sent),
This is where I am these days: I’m not better. I know I have been doing my best to pretend I am but I’m not. A recent relapse has sent me spiralling back down and this time it’s worse because I don’t hear from you so much now and so when I do, I work so hard to pretend. This leaves me with no real outlet to my thoughts so they build up and are taking over. I know this sounds like I’m angry at you or accusing; I’m doing neither. It’s just the way it is.
It must be hard being my friend. The broken record of I need help, can I talk to you, I’m not OK, I’m struggling is as exhausting for you as it is for me. I wish I had handled things differently. I took all your sympathy too early and now there’s little left. You see, I didn’t realise this would last so long or be so bad. I thought I could request all the help I needed before the kindness ran out. I was wrong.
So the pain is physical now. It has taken hold in my chest; I can feel it there, pressing down. I can imagine the reservoir of tears gathering there, waiting impatiently to rush out. It is behind my eyes, making them feel swollen and tired. And it is in my limbs, making them heavy and leaden.
I sit and look at my phone for hours, hoping for a message and leaping on it when I do get one. This eagerness, desperation to talk, must be off-putting. I try to wait before I reply but I rarely manage it.
I dread you asking me how I am. I especially dread are you feeling better now? What can I answer? What do you want me say? Is it truth or lie time? Am I a worse friend for pretending, for being dishonest or for being depressing and depressed?
I’m still trying. I’m still working at it, still experimenting and searching for someone that might work, that might help but I miss you. I don’t know if you know how much your help moved me along and how much the lack of it now saddens me.
I don’t know what to do for the best. I fear it’s too late.