I HAVE to write something. If I don’t, I’m afraid of what else might happen. This is a deliberate act to push away the dark thoughts that have been plaguing me for the past six months, in the vain hope that there will be some cathartic ending. Like some kind of brooding teenager, I have an obsession. And it is my own death.
I can’t remember exactly when it all started but it seemed to snowball quite quickly. It began with a feeling of low mood and irritability which I put down to my change in contraceptive pill following my second child. A couple of months later this had developed into anxiety about dying and the feeling that I didn’t want to die – even if I had lived a long and happy life.
At this point I should confess that I am only 37. But to me it fills like I am about a decade away from death, because time is speeding up so quickly. The other day I realised my husband and I had been together for 17 years and this filled me with sorrow.
Don’t get me wrong, it has been a fun, varied and fulfilling relationship. But looking back it feels like I literally met him just a few years ago and the rapid passage of time depresses me. A lot. It has come to the point now where I think about my own death every day. For a lot of the day. And I think about what I have done and not done and whether I will reach the end of my life and be disappointed. At the beginning of every holiday, I always try not to say to myself (but always do), “this will be over soon and it will be the last day of the holiday, and I’ll be looking back and be sad that it is over”. That is how I feel about life at the moment. I think that before I know it, it will all be over and I will be looking back thinking “why did that not last long?”
I haven’t said any of this out loud for fear that it will make it all the more real. But at least at the end of a holiday I feel like I’ve had a good time and done lots of interesting and new things. My main overriding concern at the moment is that I will look back on my life and think I didn’t do anything daring. I didn’t see the whole world, I didn’t experience everything and now that opportunity is gone. Problem is I don’t know how to change that. I don’t know what would make me fulfilled, I don’t know if I am just depressed, I don’t know if I just need to change my contraceptive pill and I don’t know if this is just a typical mid life crisis.
All I do know is that I’m still sleeping, still carrying on my day-to-day life, still doing lots of exercise and I’m still spending ‘quality’ time with the kids. Day-to-day I feel okay. But deeper down I feel broken and more recently I have been spontaneously crying as it seems to be the only way to express my despair.
I am not an emotional person, never been subject to highs and lows, so this is completely new territory for me. All I want is for the feeling of dread to go away but I feel that now it has been planted it will never leave me. The thought of that is unbearable. Is it just me?