Imagine that you’re in an empty room. The room has become completely dark. You need to get up and get out of the room, but in order to do that, you have to be able to see so you can find the door.
All that is visible is a glow in the dark light switch on the opposite wall from where you’re standing. Now all you have to do is just stroll on over there and flip it up. Walla! Light to see the door! Up and outa here! Yeah!
Sounds easy, right?
There’s just one problem. You can’t get your legs to move. Your mind recalls Kill Bill, and you’re saying “Wiggle your big toe.” over and over.
But unlike Uma Thurman, your toes do nothing. You cannot move a thing. Your mind is screaming at your legs to go. You stand there, unable to take even one step.
You don’t understand why. You are so frustrated and pissed off at your bullshit legs that won’t move. You try and reason with them. You try and figure out when and why, exactly, your legs have stopped working.
You are exhausting yourself with the fight to try and get your legs to move. You try over and over and over and over.
Minutes turn into hours that turn into days and months and even years.
You cry out for someone to help you, but no one is around to assist you in training your legs to move. No one is there to encourage you to believe in the ability of your muscles.
Or maybe they’re on the other side of the wall hollering, “Just flip the switch on, and you’ll see the door!”
Even though you’ve repeatedly called out to them that your legs won’t move.
You are stuck in your spot staring at that switch. You are hearing their voices bellowing solutions at you. Yet all you know is that your legs refuse to comply, and you are near the end of your rope.
“Why don’t they just open the door and come help me?” You think.
You don’t understand, and you fill to the brim with helplessness and hurt. Why won’t they realize that you can’t move your damn legs? How many different ways do you have to explain it? What is wrong with them? Are they not fucking LISTENING?
Eventually, spent and exasperated you close your eyes and the illuminated light switch disappears. You give up. What’s the point of continuing to gaze at that beautiful light switch, so close in your reach, if you can’t even get to it?
This is what depression and anxiety feel like. Frozen emotion. Cracked will. Defeat. Drowning in an ocean as people scream at you from the shore to “swim!”, and no one thinks to jump in and guide you to safety.
See, people can’t see these emotional disabilities with their eyes. Depression, C-PTSD and Anxiety don’t sit in a wheelchair or end up hooked to an I.V.
Because people can only view these types of disabilities with their hearts, and all the while people are screaming their opinions, solutions and judgment at you, they too, are just as stuck.
Because they can’t figure out how to reach the switch in their own room; the one that turns on their compassion.