In life, cycles of all kind exist. But with mental illnesses of any kind there are cycles we wish would never turn up again. I wish I didn’t have depression, true. But the world has to keep on turning, and so do I. And sometimes I will be turned upside down. I experience depression as a turning wheel. The wheel turns for a while and I’m good, but as it keeps turning that black mass starts to encroach. This black mass takes the form of a giant fuzzball that needles its way in when it’s time. My hands and feet turn into iron gloves and boots. My mouth is filled with acid cotton. It is terrible. It is something that cannot be explained to someone who has never experienced it. Not without the use of grandiose metaphors. Regardless, as alone as I feel during these cycles, I have learned to keep struggling. I have learned to tell myself ‘okay, so what? we can’t beat this but we can outsmart it’. There may be days when I don’t eat, drink, get out of bed, or even shower. There may be days when I cry for no reason or days when I’m all dried up. I’ve accepted that I can’t win, but still, I’ll fight. I use mind games. I imagine myself doing the things that I can’t do for the moment as vividly as possible, until I ache. I ache for them instead of ignoring them or missing them. I make myself ache so badly that even that black fuzzball starts to second guess itself. And then it passes. The darkness evaporates, my hands and feet are no longer leaden, my words are my own again. The wheel keeps on turning.