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My depression is always lurking close by. It waits for me. Even if I allow other ways of thinking and feeling to creep into my mind, depression eventually captures and distorts them. Like an incumbent who is a known entity, with years of practice, and loads of undivided support, it will always win—defeating its competitors with ease.

When I feel it taking hold and I know I am surrounded by my own personal army of contemptuous doubters and fear mongers, I don’t feel scared. I feel numb, hypnotized by the you-are-so-lame mantra. The seductively appealing film of shame and fear and insecurity that washes over me doesn’t feel like a threat; it feels like home.