Surviving Depression Together

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A saying for those of us who suffer from chronic Depression: Sticks and stones may break my bones, but words will rip our skin apart.

All over the news today is the death of Robin Williams, comedian extraordinaire. Each of his movies and even his impromptu appearances on the Emmy’s and Johnny Carson, I remember with fondness. He was professional clown laughing on the outside and crying on the inside from the Disease of Depression, alcohol and drugs. He was beloved by all. I recognized his manic behavior. His speech was manic, his mind going excessively fast, different from those of us who slow down and stumble when trying to communicate.

Robin-Williams
Courtesy of Wikipedia

When you suffer from the disease of Depression, many of us hide our pain by being funny and making others laugh. It takes a village to inspire someone who suffers from Depression. Sometimes we have to make ourselves a plan to feel good. Sometimes we have to go out of our way to help others. Those depressed usually get up on the wrong side of the bed frantic and nervous each morning.

There are many of us who just walk back and forth, with few goals and less productiveness. We inspire them by being a good example. I found there is nothing like replacing depression with doing something you love. Find out what the mentally ill love and encourage them. Those that suffer from Depression are experiencing mental illness that most hide from those around them. It is a stigma few want to talk about.

Ernest Hemingway says, “That terrible mood of depression of whether it’s any good or not is what is known as The Artist’s Reward.” I write, design rings, and keep busy around the house. I have spells in which I do organize to keep busy. My memory is from minute to minute. I do not know if that is because I am 67 or because of my psyche medicines.

I was surprised to find a fresher less tormented self, as well as a newfound confidence, I could not have prophesied, once I began a decade of self-expression. You can, too! You can write in a diary, photograph the world around you, or rap on Facebook as well as play internet games. My favorite is Words for Friends. It is a good way to keep in touch with your favorite friends and a good way to energize your brain.

Elizabeth Wurtze says, “That’s the thing about depression: A human being can survive almost anything, as long as she sees the end in sight. But depression is so insidious, and it compounds daily, that it’s impossible to see the end. The fog we experience is like a cage without a key.

My family all suffers from Depression. Each of us in our own way. My eldest son is an introvert. He works constantly and has little time with his family. My youngest son suffers from manic depression and schizophrenia. He lives with me and went out to alleged friend Saturday, two days ago, and is missing. He usually ends up at the hospital once a week for manic behavior. I can’t breathe very well when he is missing. He usually ends up in a hospital somewhere but for privacy reasons, no one will assure me that he is a patient. I love him so much. He’s funny and loving when at home until he starts drinking. He is 37 so I can’t whip him or hold back his disability money.

My eldest daughter is approaching 50. She runs and runs. Can’t hold a job but is so loving to me. I talk to her a lot. I love to make my kids laugh. Laughter is good for all of us who suffer depression.

If you have toxic emotions of fear, guilt and depression, it is because you have wrong thinking, and you have wrong thinking because of wrong believing. Believe in yourself. Believe in the goodness of others. Don’t watch the news on television. I feel more empowered when I’m busy doing something I love. What you believe is very powerful. A lazy mind befriends a lazy body.

Below are six goals to surpass every day:

  1. Fear can paralyze us
  2. Stress can affect us mentally and physically
  3. Do not pay attention to the Judgment of others
  4. Have Faith in your abilities
  5. Rethink criticism, it may be the key to success
  6. It’s always too early to quit

Scientists have demonstrated that dramatic, positive changes can occur in our lives as a direct result of facing an extreme challenge – whether it’s coping with a serious illness, drugs or alcohol, daring to quit smoking, or just living with depression.

Researchers call this ‘post-traumatic growth.’ If you suffer from chronic depression, you may not know it. Always have your sadness and/or hopelessness checked out by the medical community. I feel like I woke up in my 40’s when my daughter and I began taking psyche medicines. Depression may be a temporary phase or it may be like mine, a lifetime goal to manage.

Happiness is elusive. Go for the gusto. Nobody has to try so hard.

The strength of the song and the video lies in the expressions of the women, when the impact and façade of the make-up disappears. The beauty of their faces is quantified by the smile that was born out of the feeling of liberation from the shackles of the society.

The song by, Colbie Caillat is an amazing songstress who essentially sings a heartfelt attempt at urging women to stop trying so hard to win the approval of the society by applying layers of make-up. The video helps explain the concept of inner beauty. Even the depressed have an inner beauty. They also have an inner child wanting attention and praise rather than criticism and judgment.

This video, which has already started to go viral around the webs, puts for a very compelling argument through the lyrics and imagery. A number of girls and women, all made-up to the hilt, sing along to such powerful words like, “When you’re all alone by yourself, do you like you?” (I think this song can apply to the depressed, and handy-capped. Do you like yourself when you’re alone? Do you cry for no reason? Are you afraid to face others with your ordinary you or do you hide the real you?)

In the above video, you will see these women slowly proceed to revert back to their natural states as they wipe off the lipstick, the foundation, the mascara and eyeliner. Even the lead singer takes part in the reversal process, going from a very glamorous version of her to a stripped bare one.

The lyrics of You Don’t Have To Try So Hard:

Put your make-up on
Get your nails done
Curl your hair
Run the extra mile
Keep it slim so they like you, do they like you?
Get your sexy on
Don’t be shy, girl
Take it off
This is what you want, to belong, so they like you

Do you like you?
You don’t have to try so hard
You don’t have to give it all away
You just have to get up, get up, get up, get up
You don’t have to change a single thing
You don’t have to try, try, try, try
Get your shopping on, at the mall, max your credit cards
You don’t have to choose, buy it all, so they like you
Do they like you?

Wait a second,
Why should you care, what they think of you
When you’re all alone, by yourself, do you like you?
Do you like you?

You don’t have to try so hard
You don’t have to give it all away
You just have to get up, get up, get up, get up
You don’t have to change a single thing
You don’t have to try so hard
You don’t have to bend until you break
You just have to get up, get up, get up, get up
You don’t have to change a single thing
You don’t have to try, try, try, try
You don’t have to try so hard
You don’t have to give it all away
You just have to get up, get up, get up, get up
You don’t have to change a single thing
You don’t have to try, try, try, try
Take your make up off
Let your hair down
Take a breath
Look into the mirror, at yourself
Don’t you like you?
Cause I like you

Reccommended reading:
A Mind for Life – From Depression to Living Well by John Folk-Williams
Sculpting the Heart: Surviving Depression by Joyce White
Sculpting the Heart’s Poetry Therapy by Joyce White
Love, Marriage and Sex by Joyce White

1 Comment
  1. Joyce White says

    It was reported after I posted this article that Robin was suffering from the early onset of Parkinson. I think this might have been the key in his taking his own life. My prayers are with his family and the rest of the world who will miss his manic antics.

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