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Prayer of the Refugee [working title]

I am a refugee.

Six years ago the darkness found me, and in my desperation to feel something, I embraced it. But when the time came to move on, it gripped me with all its might, and as hard as I pulled and as much as I struggled, it would not let me go. I remained in its grip for over three years, until eventually I lost all that was good in me and I couldn't tell who I was anymore.

I am a refugee.

Three years ago a disembodied lights reached into the darkness that had become my home. It grabbed me and it shook me but I was too submerged in my own sorrow to feel a thing. Finally it held onto my collar and pulled me, trying so hard to pull me out. But I fought back and I struggled, I tried so hard to stay where I was; the darkness was all I knew; in it, I knew myself. In the end the light won and pulled me out of the darkness, and for the first time in three years I saw lights and beautiful colors and I was happy.

I am a refugee.

For the past three years I have lived in hiding, in fear of the darkness and its imminent return. I can go nowhere without looking over my shoulder, wondering if it is following me. I must avoid all dark corners where I think it might be lurking. I can never and I will never escape the darkness; I can only avoid it. The darkness is not something I can leave behind; it lives in my heart. It is a part of me that will always be there.

I am a refugee.

I have seen changes in unexpected places and unexpected faces. What I see in the mirror today is not what I saw only seven months ago. I am ill; the packaging is different, but the symptoms are all the same. Something has stolen my will and my motivation to live the life I want to live and be the person I want to be. My reasons for waking up are less compelling with each passing night, and only in my dreams am I truly alive anymore. The darkness is a shape shifter and it has consumed me, I hold it in my heart and I have been submerged in it again, after successfully avoiding it for so long, I was so happy, so, so happy, but now I've lost my identity and I don't know how long it will be before I can be pulled out again.

I am a failed refugee.

I am a prisoner and this darkness is my captor.

I don't have the strength in me to run anymore.

I don't have the strength to fight.

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July 2011