On Saturday, I asked Nick to take a picture of me.
I was low that afternoon. I was sad. I was anxious. I was angry. I felt overwhelmed by nothing specific, yet everything all at once. I felt every emotion intensely at one moment, and I was completely numb to the world by the next.
At one stage, I had managed to pull myself out of bed and into the kitchen. I was standing there for a few minutes, talking a bit with Nick, when I noticed myself dropping to the floor in tears.
I was losing it, falling into myself.
This is a scene he has witnessed a hundred times before – and one he will likely witness a hundred times again. There I was, lying on the floor, looking sad and pathetic, crying my eyes out.
And then I saw him seeing me.
And he was looking down at me with nothing but compassion in his eyes.
And so I asked him to take a picture of me.
Because I saw him looking down at me and I saw the pain I was feeling mirrored in his expression. I saw him seeing a broken person; a lost person; a sad and fragile person. I saw him acknowledging me. I saw him validating the demons in my mind. I saw him feeling everything with me.
When I saw him seeing me, I saw just how much he understands. And I understood why he does.
This is the very scene that I fought for years to hide. This is the part of me that I never dreamt of exposing to the world. This is the person I was ashamed of being. This is the darkness I didn’t want to admit I was afraid of.
But this isn’t a picture of me. This isn’t a picture of the person I am. This isn’t a picture of someone crying on the floor.
This is a picture of depression.