I feel hollow

I feel hollow.

I don't know how else to describe it, it's like there is a hole in my chest that I can't fill. Like I'm starving to death on some level other than physical. I've had episodes like this for 20 years now. Every time I seem to have my life under control I get hit again, and it floors me. My motivation vanishes, everything seems too hard. I want to skip work, lay in bed all day. I don't want to see friends, don't want to do anything. Sometimes, on really bad days, I go out drinking just so I can feel something. It doesn't help, really, but it's something to do.

I've taken anti-depressents, still am for that matter. It helps for awhile, then I seem to grow a resistance to them. I feel ashamed of being this way. I have a wife I love very much, two cats who I raised from kittens who are as affectionate as any animal I've ever met. I have friends, and family, who support me. It's not enough, and never is. In the end, I always end up feeling hollow.

I've considered the easy way out, a couple of times. During really bad episodes. Even made an attempt about 10 years ago as a dumb teenager. It didn't work out, not sure if I'm thankful for that or wish I had succeeded.

I'm not an idiot. I actually consider myself fairly inteligent, and I've done my research. On a intilectual level I know that what's happening to me is pretty simple neurochemistry. In laymen's terms, I've got a short-circut upstairs that keeps reseting me to "apathetic and afraid". I know that I am not, in fact, sad. I'm sick. That's what depression really is: an illness. That's a cold comfort when you are feeling the symptoms. Just like knowing that the cold your suffering through is perfectly natural and we understand why it's happened, but it still sucks when your nose is pluged up and you feel like crap.

I know what is happening to me, if anything it makes it worse: To know why that empty space is there but unable to fill it or ignore it. To know, beyond a shadow of a doubt, why your life has gone off the rails and being unable to correct it. People talk about changing things for the better like it's easy, but life has a momentum to it that makes a change of direction very difficult. It takes enormous energy to make change, a sort of emotional delta-v. And therein is the true hell of depression: It saps your strength, makes changes harder, reduces the amount of energy you have. What's worse, if you are smart enough to spot it, it doesn't mean your smart enough to get out of it.

Maybe that's what the hollow feeling really is: Out of gas. No more fuel to provide emotional thrust. Not enough energy to make the changes I need to make, so I feel trapped. I don't know. What I do know is this has being going on too long. I want it to stop, to go away. I'm frustrated and I'm angry, and most of all I am tired. As strong as some of those emotions are, they are muted by the empty spot in my chest. That hollow feeling always consumes them before they get too far.

I've felt hollow for so long, and at this point I just want out. That feeling scares me, on a intilectual level, but it's there: A spot in my soul (for lack of a better word) that is screaming "Make it stop!" over and over again, as it is eaten alive by the empty monster within. (good god that's melodramatic, but it gets the message across.)

Please, God, make it stop. I want to love my wife again without this clouding things. I want to be able to hold down a job without it sapping my soul. I want to be able to hang out with friends without feeling ashamed. I don't want to feel like an emotional cripple anymore. I want my fucking life back.

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