The Fear of Change
There is a fear that has been brewing inside me for some time, in regards to my future. Ever since I started medication, I feel that I have been constantly changing. Change is something that I used to fear, and avoid like the plague. Recently, I’ve opened up to the idea of change, because my mental illness will not get better without it. With these changes, I’ve become more comfortable with the fact that who I was before the medications is now gone. That person that simply existed for the longest time, with no hope in sight. It a strange feeling to look in the mirror and feel as if someone else is looking back at you. This is something that I’ve had to get used to these past days. The fear of change that I once felt, while still there, is always in contradiction with the ongoing changes that I am going through. When you break it down to its simplest nature, the fear of change can be seen as a fear of losing comfort, or being removed from comfort. Let’s all be completely honest here, being depressed, especially when you’ve been that way for awhile, it becomes a comfort zone. You understand the lies that depression tells you, and you take them as truths, because it is so much harder to dispute them. I mean, how can you really dispute them, if all your energy is going into staying alive.
Survival instincts, while some may say that humans don’t experience instincts the same way that other animals do, survival is the one that goes across the board. There is something, deep inside of you, that is keeping you alive; just as it has done for every other living thing before you. I’ve made reference to the fact that I believe that mental illness, in some cases, can completely replace this instinct in its victims. That wanting nothing else but to die, is obviously in clear contradiction to survival. Yet, that both can coexist so naturally is something that I don’t think that I’ll ever understand. The urge to die, and the urge to live, both fighting this tug of war in your, or my, head. It can take all the energy you have just to keep this war from consuming you. I feel that this fear of change that I, and probably some of you, experience is directly related to this conflict inside our, respective, head. That to survive, you must constantly change, and evolve to better suit you to survival. Everyone who has ever had a decent science lesson in school will know, that only the strongest survive. So at one end, your brain is trying to change for the better, and make it so that you survive another day. On the other hand, your brain is also trying to feed you these lies, that we believe for some time, that you’re better off dead. It may be brutally honest, but it is a bold faced lie that depression feeds us. There is no possible way that your life can improve by being dead, that is actually the worst possible thing that can happen to your life, if you think about it.
While death is a natural part of life, and should not be feared, but celebrated; it is not something that you should court. You should not welcome death into your life, but fight it with everything you have. Until one day, it gains the upper hand, and you submit. There is no shame in submitting after you’ve given the fight every thing you have. This is not to glorify or romanticise suicide, but rather to say that life is worth living until your body gives in, not your mind. We need to steel ourselves in order to make it through this journey we call life. Change as we must, leave our old selves behind, and walk towards a brighter future. Without change, we will sink into this false comfort, and our life will pass us by, just as if we were dead.