I love this video. It’s beautiful. Friends of mine will tell you that I adore Lindsey Stirling. She’s a force of nature on her violin and always a joy to watch. This is the latest song I’m obsessed with by her. She explained in an interview that it was inspired by her struggle with an eating disorder, but I find it to be applicable to anything that leaves someone feeling isolated.
I have some friends who have been struggling with depression of late and I posted this cartoon on my personal Facebook. Much to my surprise, my ex from high school–who is happily married and with whom I’ve remained Facebook friends/irl acquaintances–responded to the post like this:
This was well-timed for me. I don’t really think of myself as “having depression” because my depression is both mild and well-controlled. But I just had a nasty bout a few days ago where I just could not do any of my real work. Having a good support network was the key to recognizing it, and knowing how to cope.
He’s always been a good soul and I was happy that my post helped him. His comment lead to our mutual love of Hyperbole and a Half (particularly “Adventures in Depression” and “Depression Part Two“. If you don’t know this blog, get to know it. It makes me laugh out loud when I’m by myself, something I don’t often do. If you want to support Allie Brosh and her awesomeness, check out her Zazzle store and her Amazon links.
The other thing that came out of this was me thinking through how depressed people and characters relate to the world. Over on the NaNoWriMo Facebook page, we had someone pretending to be depressed who was actually just trolling (something that is rare because the Admin shut those things down pretty quick as it is a no drama zone). It was amazing to me how many people, who thought the person may actually be depressed about his writing, started bashing him. Only a few people were sympathetic. I opted for tough love, suggestions, and sympathy in one epically long response. The thread has since been deleted, so I can’t tell you exactly what I said, but it essentially came down to, if you’re feeling depressed reach out, make sure you have a solid support group, and trust people you know irl, not just online. If it is about something specific, either deal with it or distract yourself until you find yourself on a more even keel. Do what you need to do to feel better. Screw anyone who says you shouldn’t feel that way. Denying feelings is as ridiculous as a juggling seal trying to fly backwards over a rainbow in order to meet a unicorn. Don’t do it. Accept who you are, where you’re at, and surround yourself with people who will do the same. Also, if you know you have a tendency towards depression, set a game plan up with people who care–in advance–and make sure that they will follow through.
This kid describes his life battling depression beautifully:
If you are dealing with depression, please lean on the people who love you. You are not alone.