Drowning on dry land

Toheeb Oladeinde
3 min readApr 7, 2022

It often starts off as a little worry at the back of your mind and you wave it off as you believe you’re having the time of your life and everything is on cruise control.

Slowly, reality starts to creep in and you realise something is eating you away and you have no power to fight it. From being the loudest voice in the room, you start to shrink and no one notices, even you don’t notice until it is too late.

Your community has high expectations for you and why not? You’ve continuously wowed them since you were a kid and now they expect the same but you know it’s not as easy it used to be. You can’t explain to anyone as they’d just think you crave attention so you suck it in and it keeps growing bigger and bigger till the cross is so heavy, you start to stumble.

Your appetite starts to wane and then your mood becomes unstable. You start finding it very difficult to talk to people and bottle it all up until it keeps you wide awake at night. From one night to a thousand nights, the circles under your eyes start to darken, you laugh less and scowl more.

Your phone starts to bore and annoy you so you turn off notifications permanently. Your regular social life updates become nonexistent and then the read receipts go off. You still want to be that same person but the voices in your head are too loud and you can barely make any sense of it.

You start to lose interest in everything. You become distracted at work and then you abruptly quit. The noises are getting too loud and no one understands. You’re screaming out loud but no one can hear you. You also don’t want to be an object of pity. You turn to your God and it seems he has also forsaken you.

You want to end it all yet there is so much to live for; love, family and friends so you decide to seek help. Help is not as easy as it seems. Words fail you so you get chalked up as unfulfilled and restless. Drugs are prescribed to “help” with the voices and with sleep. It doesn’t work and you get irritated as you keep burning cash due to treatments, sessions and meds.

You no longer have a job by the way. Thousands of job applications sent, hundreds of rejection letters received and you start to feel less and less like yourself and the once awesome person you were is now a shadow. Your account hits negative but you have to keep paying to live, paying for the drugs and for the sessions so you begin to pawn your stuff with hope that you’d get them back once you finally feel better but you know deep down, there is no end in sight so you breakdown every night in tears as you toss and turn.

Is this a cry for help? maybe, maybe not.