It’s more like a gorilla, to be honest. The thing that sits on my shoulders like the proverbial devil, and whispers thoughts into my consciousness and influences my mood and emotions – won’t go away. It has a firm grip on me. It is my master.
I am helpless to it’s instructions no matter how hard I try to think over it with my conscious mind. It ignores my will and laughs at me. The beast knows its place in my life and I know my place. I believe that until the day I die, it will maintain its position of superiority – but can I accept this?
The monkey compels me to feel angry, defeated, sullen, beaten, and compliant. The best I can do is to swipe at it with a dull sword when it comes out far enough for me to even notice. Otherwise, it gleefully and sadistically pulls one string or another and I am the puppet that flails wildly through life at its command.
On occasion, it sleeps long enough for me to come out and play – to be myself but those times are lessor than greater in the span of the clock that counts down my time here. Occasionally I wake up in the morning before it does long enough for me to see past the bars it has cemented into the brickwork of my skull.
This thing is the shroud I’ve talked about before: the darkness that blocks out the light and blinds me to everything but what is directly in front of my own eyes – my own misery. It collapses my senses into a tiny compartment that I can’t think beyond. My world becomes tiny and dull.
I sleep in my cell and dream dreams that take me away from my confinement only to wake up to my reality; my little world of depression. My prison and my warden.
When will I be free? When will I have the strength to vanquish my aggressor for good? For whatever reason, I have been assigned this challenge in this body in this place and time – which really don’t exist.
Who or what is this thing and who am I to it? If I lay down and play dead will it go away?
For today, anyway, I’m too tired to fight. I’ll wait, I think, for a day when I feel strong again but for now, I lay down and close my eyes and wait for God to take me in his or her arms and carry me to safety.
I sleep, and when I do, so does the monkey on my back.