My depression likes to call itself a dragon.
And no, not like the friendly green ones in children’s books, with the shiny scales and swirling flames erupting from their whimsical snouts.
He’s more like the ones you’d find in damp caves among craggy shores, where the skies churn with angry grey, such that nights seem to seep into the day.
He’s got deep black eyes, and glinting teeth that he bares when I’ve made him angry.
When I get lost in my head, I hear his snorts and snarls among the voices that simmer without rhythm or rhyme.
He crawls along behind me, ever-present in my shadow, as if just by being near me, he can drain the living right out.
Sometimes he’s big and towering, casting storm clouds over my day, as I drag my feet and lose my sense of purpose in the darkness.
Sometimes he’s small and droopy-eyed, resting neatly in my palm, and I kiss his small nose, wondering what I’d do without him.
Sometimes I hate him.
Sometimes he snaps at my heels and breathes his hot breath down my back.
Those days usually end in angry tears and choking sobs.
Sometimes I love him.
Sometimes he curls up with me at night, because he knows no one else is there.
It’s nights like those that it’s hardest to push him away.
And though I wish for nothing more than to evict him from his bed between my ribcage,
In the deeper corners of my heart, I know we are already life-long companions.