Mental illnesses are waves

Some big, some small  

They show warning signs

They hit  

One after the other  

And then another

Knocking you off your feet

Dragging you out to sea

You’ll swim towards shore

You come so close  

Just to be pulled back  

Sometimes farther than before

The pushing and pulling

Disorienting you

To where it’s all too much

The stinging strong smell of the salt overtaking the air

Infiltrating your lungs making it hard to breathe

The slimy water clinging to your skin

Like seaweed trapping you  

The crashing and thrashing of the waves

Breaking against your skin

The bitterness overtaking your tongue

As you gag unable to catch your breath

The water weighing you down

Bringing you to the bottom


You feel like you’re drowning  

being overtaken by it all

With no one to save you

No matter how loud you scream

Unable to swim  

Sinking until you can’t breathe  

Watching the waves crash down on you

Fighting to live

You push yourself from the sand

All the way to the breaking waves

Seeing the sun rise on the horizon

Beginning a new day

You may never make it all the way

But enough to survive  

People may never see

How far or how hard you swam

They may never understand

How it felt to drown

And to keep swimming after

Through the true deep and dark sea


Now I look back

With my friends and they

See how hard I swam

How much I struggled

And they support me even when its hard


I know I can breathe

Even when I smell the salty sea

Even with the slimy feeling

That never seems to leave

Even when I feel the waves strike my skin

Even with the overpowering taste

Always on the back of my tongue

I know I can live



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