Demon Lover

A certain joy and freedom from worry have been courting me lately. I’ve been captivated with the energy of it, and have allowed myself to be pursued by it without my usual suspicion. But about three days ago I felt something like a change in air pressure, maybe the kind of sense an animal gets before a tsunami hits. It kept me up at night for two nights, and then yesterday the wave came in.

A depression hit like a train. Knocked me out, took me down, ravaged my spirit with its dark thinking. I’m not new to such episodes, but it doesn’t make it easier to go through them, even if they are familiar. Today, with a little bit of perspective coming back, I had a revelation.  For the first time I saw this pursuing energy as something like a jealous lover. “How dare you leave me behind, I own you! I am the only one who knows you, loves you truly, will never leave you, will always be there while other moods come and go.”

I thought of the story of the Phantom of the Opera. Christine is trying to have a human love, but the compelling darkness of the Phantom who taught her to sing and seduced her into a fealty to his underworld tries desperately to break it up. His powers are strong and hard for her to resist, and her heart knows that what he has taught her has made her who she is.

Depression is such a demon lover. It becomes a familiar way of knowing, of sensing the world, a dark teacher who understands what those who have never traveled in its realm do not. It is reliable, easy to return to when others disappoint. But it is also like the abusive parent or spouse who keeps you so down you don’t believe you can survive elsewhere, or could possibly deserve anything different.

The fact that this story occurred to me this day after yesterday’s assault let’s me know that something is shifting. As Carl Jung says, once you make a thing conscious 90% of the work is done. I have been in this dominating and abusive relationship for too long, but now suddenly I see it rather than just descending unconsciously into its grips. I can call in “social services,” get some treatment, and realize I don’t have to submit. It will take work and practice, but I am utterly relieved and grateful for the breakthrough. Something good is blessing me now.

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One Response to “Demon Lover”

  1. Jerry R. O'Neill Says:

    Oh, see the power of cosmic dimension graciously shared through the love of a wounded healer!

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