The Comfort Zone.

Six Months.

Six months and three weeks.

Two hundred and three days.

Four thousand, eight hundred and fifty-nine hours and twenty-two minutes.

Two hundred and ninety-one thousand, five hundred and sixty-one minutes.

And, to be just a little facetious, seventeen million, four hundred and ninety-three thousand, six hundred and fifty-two seconds.

That’s how long I may have left to live. Although it’s definitely gone down since I started typing, but I’m not re-typing.

Let’s back up a little bit, shall we?

Have you ever heard the phrase, “step outside of your comfort zone?” Usually said by those who don’t understand your turmoil, the same folks who tell you to just don’t think about it, keep your chin up. Those annoying folks, who couldn’t possibly know, because no one ever really wants to know, do they?

Know what?

This is me, stepping outside of my comfort zone.

Because for years and years I have kept my inner thoughts entirely locked up. I’ve never kept a journal. I’ve never discussed mental health. I’m that person who, when asked how’s it going? replies, it’s going. I’m the self-depreciating humour, the one that gets laughs, those kinds of laughs where you don’t think there’s anything really sinister behind it all because, yeah, this is Me and this is the way they always talk, right?

There is something behind it.

The comfort zone is an odd phrase, when you think about it.

It implies…comfort. But there’s nothing comforting about being trapped behind bars of your own mental restraint. It holds you back. It’s the reason you deny opportunities, don’t make those new friends, don’t go alone to restaurants, don’t send off that job application.

It stops us from being us.

I think everyone’s comfort zone has an appearance. Something lurking over their shoulder, almost gremlin-eseque. The guy sat opposite you on the train, his has thick-rimmed glasses and a thin mustache. The lady behind the counter ringing up your purchases, hers is in the shape of her childhood and that one bad experience she had that she just can’t work her way past.

What does my comfort zone look like?

A grey puddle of nothing and nowhere and no sound.

See, I have clinical depression. The zip-zapping of my brain doesn’t work the way it should. I don’t think it ever has. There’s a multitude of reasons, but I’m not going into them. Just. Yet.

But I am stepping outside of my comfort zone. I’m putting myself out there.

My comfort zone wants me to lie down and not get back up again.

I’m finding reasons to live. And I’m writing them here. Rambles, rants, repetitive word play. I’m trying so damn hard to silence that little voice, that *whispers it* suicide ideation in the little corner, lurking and waiting for that one final crack to crumble my castle down. Love a bit of alliteration, see what I did there?

Seventeen million, four hundred and ninety-three thousand, seven hundred and sixty-seven seconds.

….did that number just go up?

📸Image: Cables Wynd House, aka ‘Banana Flats’ in Edinburgh. ©Matt Brown. Taken from zupagrafika.com

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