You started forgetting what it was like to have loved life in the span of roughly two months.
Looking down at the specimen that your body has left you, struggling through the four hours it takes to be pried from a bed and put into clothes, and seeing the utter horror on everyone's faces that you know is only mirroring your own - this is madness.
Disease is madness, Madness in a form that you can touch, in a form that can grab you and hold you down.
The only thought is for it to stop, to be able to say, "See? I'm not crazy. There is no sickness. This is a normal Tuesday for me just as it is for you."
But persists the cold grip of reality that drags you painstakingly throughout your devastation, your existence, taking care that you experience every nuance, that you have to shoulder every pang.
And mostly, you are sure that there is never. Ever. An End.
This is its victory.
They ask and prod and wave their fingers in your face, make noises in the backs of their throats, and send odd gifts and niceties. You hate them for this.
All of this smacks of pity and your body mocks you by retching as if it smelled something vile.
You vomit from trying to live and they will pity you even more for it.
But the loneliness.
Akin to a cold that is so deep into the bone that no amount of heat or covering will ward it off. It stays. There are those that remain next to you, that fight with you, that weep with you, that fear with you, that pull you into a small sense of yourself.
But even in the face of their presence, you feel a bold and steady darkness fold itself around you as if it were only just in the wings; it seems so familiar and you realise this is because it only had left for mere moments as they tried their damndest to pull you back from that brink. You watch faces disappear and grow smaller and distorted with their own pain, their own thoughts, their pity, their lives. You sense their disgust and you hate yourself for ever being the reason for that look on their face.
But it is you.
You tell them that you can't go further, that you don't wish to go further. You know this in the deepest places that your soul contains. It resonates in your head and extend through your former years. Nothing is nor will be more true than the one thought: Please, no more.
They tell you to push forward and you do it but they seem far away and insignificant. You tell yourself that a few moments - oh for just a precious few! - without this relentless horror and away from the Madness might clear your head. Then you might know again about life and why you once loved it.
You receive no respite, no few moments to catch your sanity. For all the anguish and the fog and the tears and the hysteria, you eventually are struggling to hear those you always held dear telling you to hang on and that you will see the end.
That it is near.
That you are fierce.
That you have life outside of this.
That there is no pit that is too deep.
And you are hanging on.
You are hanging on with all that your body and spirit will spare you.
And you are saying to yourself that you are not ever going to go plunging to those depths comprised of your deepest sorrows and unfulfilled longings.