In the darkness, the nightmares come. The things that scratch and chase, the feeling of unease and fear. The ghosts of the past, the pain and occasionally, death himself appear in the nightime carnivalesque horror show of black, grey and red. I fall and run and scream and yet I am never far ahead of my pursuers.
In the darkness, there is unfathomable sadness. I ride the waves of the dark seas, curled up and lonesome in my tiny vessel waiting the approach of an unseen shore. The cloak of depression wrapped tightly around myself, the only thing I know for sure to be real.
In the darkness, the bats fly through the blackened sky, silhouettes amongst the moon. Dogs bay in the distance, rustling in the bushes; a goblin or something worse lurks unseen and watching. And yet, when I look skywards, there among the all encompassing inky blackness of the sky; there are stars. Balls of burning gas light years away, bright beacons of hope.
In the darkness, I wind my way through the thorns and twisting paths to the land of the Crone and of the dark goddesses. Seeking wisdom and guidance. 'Do not fight the Dark', is all they say, 'for it has different lessons than those of Day.' I am comforted in this darkness and lean into in, letting it envelop me and breathing deeply, allow the truth of this place to overtake me.
In the darkness, there are dreams. I fly high above the Earth as a bird, swim deep beneath the seas and discover its mysteries without fear of suffocation. I find the strength to turn and face the things of my nightmares, to plant my feet firmly and hold my own ground. The colors of the world return, vivid blues and greens shining like gemstones. There are battles won in the darkness of my dreams.
In the darkness, the blackest seas end and I find there The Black Wolf waiting for me on the shore. The sadness doesn't dissipate, it shifts and changes broadening into something profound. Placing my hand on his warm fur, I allow the Black Wolf to lead me further inwards; into the grotto of myself. I surrender to the feelings and experience them without reservation until I become numb. Until the pain and the sadness has ended. The Black Wolf nudges me forward from my hibernation, wet nose bringing on the pins and needles of emotion. I emerge from the cave into the arms of the Torch Bearer, renewed and refreshed. In the darkness of depression I find solace in myself.
In the darkness, I watch the bats dance among the twinkling stars with childlike elation. These creatures of the night have always meant so much to me for reasons I cannot fully explain and my heart soars when I see them. The goblins rustle in the brush and I offer them beer and bread to keep their tricks to themselves. I sit quietly in the darkness, listening to Mother Night and her creatures. There are songs that are only sung here, in the darkness.
In the darkness, I am challenged.
In the darkness, I discover truth.
In the darkness, I am renewed.
In the darkness, I find hope.
I was diagnosed with depression in my teens after being dragged unwillingly to a hosital and beat myself up for a long time because I felt broken. I felt like there was something terribly wrong with not being care-free and happy all the time. Like the darkness was a blight and a mark of shame to be carried with my head down like a giant cross on my back. I self hurt for nearly a decade, letting the physical pain distract from the anguish of the fighting within myself. The years passed and I finally stopped fighting the cycles, I let myself be carried out to sea and allowed the black waters to wash over me. In time I dragged myself ashore, with battle scars aching, triumphant and finally able to accept the darkness within myself.
I find happiness and warmth in the light, I find comfort and renewal in the dark. They both reside inside of me and in all of us, each having a unique cycle of their own. Depression is a part of me, but I no longer suffer from it.
A gift of sorts to you, my loves. This song is like pure fucking magic and I belt it out while spinning 'round feeling weightless, dark and super nova beautiful.
ETA: Thank you for your concern dear ones. I no longer self hurt and right now I'm in a good place. This post started as me pondering over what to write for this week's Pagan Blog Project post for the letter 'D' and when I thought about doing a post on 'Darkness' the words just came tumbling out, like a confessional of sorts. I was initially going to write about 'Deity' or 'Diana', but as you can see, my heart had other intentions.