In the Pale Moonlight

Christmas is almost upon us. So before I start this post, which will be rather serious, lets start with some Christmas cheer.

I just think this is so creative. Anyway I want to talk to you today about depression and mental illness in general. It is a difficult topic – I am unqualified to talk about it but I need to. I will try and make it as lighthearted as possible and intersperse it with some music.

Maybe this one isn’t so light-hearted.

I chose the title because I think it nicely demonstrates how I feel sometimes. (And it’s the title of my favourite DS9 episode but that’s irrelevant – or is it a hippopotamus?)

That joke may only work spoken say it and see if you get it.

I have said before, somewhere on this blog, that I have this idea that I can fundamentally control my life – or rather that life is like a computer game that can be completed. And sometimes I feel depressed just because I haven’t done something that only I care about.

Yes… I have done this in the past. I have put fun on my to-do list. Because if I do that it feels like I’m achieving something.

What does this have to do with dancing and the devil?

Well with dancing one must lead and one must follow. So in a way I’m dancing with my own self. You could say it’s like the me from the mirror universe. I’m guessing that he must be clean shaven as I have a beard.

And so this other me takes the lead sometimes. And in those situations I feel terrible. And its not about what you’ve achieved in life (money/family however you measure it) or what you haven’t got. It’s… well one person described it as being like having a full fridge but not liking the look of any of the food.

My mind seems to do this…

…at the slightest provocation.

Where a normal person, in a difficult situation, might ask themselves: What’s the worst that can happen? And come up with things like: you’ll be fired, fined, ect…

My mind is thinking…

…or some such thing…

…well that’s a gross exaggeration but I’m sure you get the idea…

Yes… there have been thoughts of death in my mind at time… this is when the devil really takes over the dance…

This is something difficult to talk about. I’m not sure I can. I have moments that come on suddenly where I imagine having died and the reactions of others to this news…

… and then just as suddenly I’m happy again for no reason.

… which is nice…

This is getting very sad…

People, some people, don’t understand mental illness. This is an often repeated point but I’m going to make it anyway. I’m sure you’ve heard it. It’s the idea that if you said you weren’t going to attend a party because you’d fallen down the stairs that morning and broken their leg – everyone would understand – if you told them it was because of anxiety – they would tell you to cheer up.

I very dear friend of mine (the one from a couple of posts ago) is dealing with these issues now. It is sad how she devalue herself. Because she is courageous. She’s a fighter and I know she will pull through. And without meaning to be boastful perhaps I am too. I am frequently stressed, worried, and have dark thoughts, but I have a job and I maintain it – I can smile of course but I know that sooner or later the devil will take the lead again, I will feel terrible like there is no point to anything, and I will need to fight him off.

And to that friend I have to say…

‘I have been and always shall be your friend.’

… and that I miss you.

…And to all of you reading this, for whatever you a celebrating at this time of year, have a wonderful time!

***

I just wanted to say that I have checked this post. I really have. Unfortunately my particular combination of dyslexia and dyspraxia makes it really hard for me to spot typos. Please enjoy and I’ll try not to make too many errors.

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