It’s not like I haven’t been to the doctor before and I am the type of person who is afraid of them. I don’t mind it. But this time I was afraid. I know thus far, I sound like I am making a big deal of minute things. But, a ‘doctor’ and the word, ‘medication’ makes things serious, at least in our country they do. Emotions and experiences hardly ever matter. Even when movies like ‘Dear Zindagi’ try to make it real, people care more about Alia Bhatt and Shahrukh Khan. Even if the Blue Whale Challenge becomes a media spectacle, ‘Depression’ takes a backseat. I guess that is just how the world works.
I was terrified on the way to the doctor’s, flashbacks of the emergency ward in England coming back to my mind. Somehow I began to think that maybe the depression was in my head, it was a feeling. I was almost sure that I wasn’t going to be taken seriously. My mother was eager, wanting to know the root cause of the problem. I, on the other hand, was anxious, how would the doctor buy what I said? Would they tell me, “Don’t think like that, you’re perfectly fine, just take some rest and you’ll get better, get these thoughts out of your head.” In my head, it sounded like sound advice. But my heart hurt from the fact that if she would actually tell me that, I might not have much longer. And I didn’t know what convincing would take to make her understand I needed her help.
Therapy in the past hadn’t worked, because I didn’t trust my therapist, and to repeat the story over and over was painful. Mostly I was running away. But once the medicines, if this new doctor gave me any were to begin I knew there was no way out. Running away has never been an option for me but getting out of something has been a problem.
I could barely contain the emotion stepping through the hospital doors. As I saw a patient step out of the doctor’s room, someone whose face I will never again remember and whose identity means nothing to me made me wonder, how many out there are suffering like this? Suffer for different reasons and on a daily basis? Another question cropped up, how many weren’t seeing doctors about it, are silent and aren’t able to afford this?
I stepped in nervous, well-rehearsed formalities were exchanged. Telling her my story her poker face slowly turned tensed and I knew my condition was serious. She had first sent my mother out then called her back in, telling her that she was going to treat me for clinical depression, that I had waited too long to be treated and the medicines were going to help me. My mind, the constant cynic scoffed. How was I going to get better? How was this going to get any better? I’d heard horror stories about medication, the side-effects, and the trauma. I didn’t want it. I could hear my refusal inside. But another voice since there were many in my head screamed, “WHAT CHOICE DO YOU HAVE LEFT?” So I was going to try this too. It made me feel guilty for my parents and pity for myself. It felt like the only light I had at the end of the tunnel even if it wasn’t the one I wanted.
Nothing worked, maybe I was the reason they didn’t. The dosage didn’t matter, the timings didn’t matter. My university didn’t matter, nor did my assignments or this stupid old judgemental society. I didn’t have to look in her eyes or my mother’s to know that I was on a mission and the determination rose without the doctor for once, without the sister, the friend or the father. I wanted to get better. I was going to get better. I am not sure right now if I will be, but I want to be better and that’s enough for me right now. I can’t assure myself that life will get better too but maybe, just maybe if I am better I can make my life better, and that’s all the strength I have to focus on life at this point.