Updated: Apr 19, 2020
Some thoughts on depression, anxiety, suicide, darkness.
So often the darkest of dark lives in the brightest of brights you will ever meet. There is some sort of rhythm and balance in every bit of life. And death. To achieve the the kind of high that comes with amazing creativity you can bet the lows are there lurking. Looking back in our history we have seen some of the most amazing creators and when we get deeper inside a realization of the tortured soul that lies within.
How? On? Earth?
Just one more thing humanity doesn’t always see. But why? Because we aren’t looking deeper. Our surface is what tells our story to so many. We decide how our people are feeling based on our experiences and how we feel. These friends that live in so much bright and so much dark feel pain. They feel it harder than most. Sometimes constant. I think physical pain but surely mental too. The feels run so so deep. They have to. The feels have to be so deep to make the bright so bright but the thing about the brightest bright is that it burns. It burns and burns and burns until it burns out. My sweet daddy. Oh he felt the feels. So deep when he accidently killed a kitten. My heart just broke as he sat on the porch with its tiny body in his big, rough hands and cried from a deep place in his soul. His feels, oh so deep. People drawn in and not even realizing why. Charisma to spare. The joy in his grin, such a precious grin, and the sparkle in his eye, the sparkliest, didn’t tell the whole story. The story of watching TV all the nights because closing his eyes wouldn’t work. The story of debilitating back pain and the pain killer addiction that won battle after battle that went along with his pain. His guilt from a spanking delivered because it was his understanding of what he knew from his own childhood. His heart being sick because of a misteaching from a little well meaning church that had him believing that any ill that befell his children was because of his sin. We went round and round on that one. “The sins of the father, Grube. My sins caused this. You don’t know how bad my sins were.” Yes, yes I do, Daddy. All sin is just that. Sin. None better or worse to the One that matters most. No, these tortured loved ones felt and feel pain deeper. What looks like a careless response is a safety. To keep themselves from falling apart at the hurt they caused you. The care is so deep but the response looks twisted. In my boys laughter when he really needs to cry. Waking up and just not feeling right. Never. Never just being. Like an air conditioning in a commercial building. It doesn’t just let the right degrees ride. It is constant cold or constant heat. And that kind of back and forth, hot vs. cold, hot VS. cold battling it out, can cause cracks. Deep cracks that seem impossible to repair in the despair of the cracked one. But as a deeply cracked one myself, I know the truth. Ask all you want. I still don’t know why and I’m through trying to know. My light and dark isn’t broken and it doesn’t need a fix. I am who I am and I’d rather focus on finding more light. More light for me and more light for you. The truth is that I’m alright with me even when I’m not alright. The truth of love and while love alone cannot make something new. New is not the standard. The salve of love can be just enough to get through until the light can shine again. And sometimes. It can’t.
To my friends that live in the brightest and the darkest. You are not alone. I see you. I see you and I know so many that see you, too. It’s okay that you can’t believe the care I have for you. That your life matters so much more than your death even though sometimes I know that’s all you can think about. That I know you are doing your very best and that drugs and alcohol and exercise and sleep can dull the pain, but friends of the lightest and darkest. It cannot take the pain away. The only chance we have is to try and live with the pain. To learn a way to breath or move or think or create in the darkest of dark until we can get back to the light.
So. Not. That. Easy. Not easy at all. But living is important and so it’s worth it. No, I can’t understand your pain, just like you can’t understand mine. Let’s let that go and try something different. We don’t have to understand eachother to love and be loved. Something just to get through the dark or begin to feel some comfort while there. Will you love you enough to let me try with you? Sit with you and hold you. Not judging, remember, I know the darkest of dark, too.
My friends that live in the place where waking up isn’t always a dread and going to sleep isn’t always work. The brightest of bright need you to know that we are trying. That we aren’t lazy or lacking self control. That every second I am giving you my very best. That hearing from the beginning of time that I’m not living up to my potential is a lie. That it’s impossible to be “on” for me all the time just like it is for you. That I try so hard to make the world happy and brighter just in case it’s dark for you and I wouldn’t wish this mess on anyone. Not even for one millisecond. Not even one. And sometimes my dark feels ok. But also that my light and my dark are because or in spite of you or the surroundings is just not true. The dark is in me and there’s not a thing you can do. Except love me. Love me and all of the ones just like me all of the time. Just like I love you.
Dedicated to my cousin Cameron Chapman
June 22, 1994 – October 13, 2015
And all the brightest of brights that burned out too soon, the brightest of brights that still burn and the ones that love us.