You pull your hair hard, elbows like antlers.
You gasp through your teeth, chest stretching upward like a balloon being buried alive.
Your lungs are filling with hummingbirds and heat.
Your heart is a running boat propeller that has been pulled naked from the water.
You are on a carousel and can't stop.
You are suffocating on the air you’re drowning in.
Breathe in. Through your nose.
Let that chilly wisp crawl through and caress the back of your tongue.
Let your chest fill like a fire hose being woken up by water.
Breathe out. Through your mouth.
Drop your jaw like a drawbridge.
Release that train of fog through the tunnel of your lips.
Breathe in. This has happened before. You have done this before.
Breathe out. You will make it. You always do.
(David Icenogle is a writer and mental health advocate who is influenced by his personal experiences with mental illness.)
The Beautiful Space-