Wednesday, August 13, 2014

We are going to be ok.

Robin Williams for Esquire Magazine shot by Mark Mann

I honestly don't really know where to begin with this post. As all of you know, we lost a great actor on Monday. After years of battling depression, Robin Williams took his own life. Hearing the news shook me to my core. As a child of the 90's, I've seen almost all of the great Robin Williams movies. Every time Mrs. Doubtfire was on, my mother and I would watch it together and laugh at the silly lines. When I was in 6th grade and tried out for teen theater, I watched Hook to get into the mind set of a lost boy, looking to Robin Williams as my fearless leader, Peter Pan. So much joy was brought to my life because of his movies. It's hard to imagine that a man who could make all of us laugh so much could be plagued with such sadness. 

To be completely honest with everyone, I'm so shaken by this loss. I have nothing but respect for the man and the loss is huge and it really struck a cord with me. As I've mentioned in previous posts, I suffer from pretty severe depression and anxiety. There are weeks where everything in my life is going well and for some reason I can't find a reason to get up in the morning. I have frequently battled my own voice in my head telling myself that I'm not good enough and that I don't deserve to live. Through this journey of growing up, I've seen my depression become more manageable with the help of therapy and amazing support system and I always just assumed that as I got older the depression would get easier to control. That I would have my bad days but I would have years of wisdom to figure out ways to clear my head and get past even the darkest of days. 

Robin Williams taking his life at 63 years old woke me up. Depression is life long. Depression is a battle. Depression just doesn't go away. I opened my eyes to the adults around me who suffer from depression as well only to realize they struggle each and everyday. Some days are better than others, as it always is, but somedays are darker than you can imagine. All of a sudden a fear took over. All of a sudden I was afraid that it would never get better. That I would have a family, a career and other real responsibilities that would be neglected if I couldn't get out of bed due to depression. What if my future family needed me and I couldn't get past the terrible days that abuse me mentally and physically? After talking to a lot of my other friends I realized they had similar fears. 

The conversation that started after my How To Love Your Depressed Lover  post was one of love, support and a mutual understanding. People I hadn't talked to in years messaged me and told me their stories of their struggles. It was nice to make a little support group among friends. A lot of times, it helps to feel as if you're not alone. 

So that is why I'm writing this post. I want to make some promises to myself and I hope you can all make them to yourself as well. I promise to fight as hard as I can to see the light on these dark days. I promise to take this battle with depression day by day and to not get consumed over the what ifs of the future. I promise that if the voice in my head tells me that I could be freed of my pain if I just ended my life that I will go and talk to someone who can help me push past it. 
Please talk to someone. Anyone. There are so many people who will listen and help you until the wave passes, even though sometimes it feels as if it never will. This is the reason I have the phrase "This too shall pass" on my right arm. 
It is an everyday battle but one that is worth fighting. We need to remember that. 

Tell the people that you care about most that you love them and hug them if you can.
Life is precious and we should take the time to let the people who matter to us know that they are valued in our lives. 

I don't know how to end this post. My heart is aching because I want so badly to believe it will get better. I know it will. I know I have it in me to fight. I know that we all do and I know so many of you, the people I care about the most, are going through the same struggle, this same fight. I want to be able to hug every single one of you who is and tell you we're going to be ok. It will be hard but we are going to be ok. 

We are going to be ok.

We are going to be ok.

I'll leave you with a poem from Donna-Marie Riley, who wrote "How To Love Your Depressed Lover" which inspired the post mentioned before. Her writing is so heartfelt and beautiful. She's easily become one of my favorite writers and I hope you can take time to read the rest of her work. 

Eventually, The Flowers

the flowers will grow out of your back.
Only then will the lovers give up their hands.
Only then will the rivers flow into your veins.

You belong to the lilies.
Remember that.

Someday the sun will catch in your throat.
Someday, magic. Someday, hallelujah.

                    You’ll make it.
                    To the water. To the summer.
                    To the peace.

You’ll make it to the forest where the birds
will adorn you. They will perch on your collarbones
and love you back.

The birds. The sun. The magic.
You belong to the magic.

Eventually, the flowers will grow out of your back
and the loneliness will forget how to kiss you.

1 comment:

  1. Thank you for the reading recommendations. My husband suffers from depression and it's very hard to not be able to take it all away from him.. Lovely tribute to Mr. Williams, it saddened me as well.