17 August 2014

Depression and modern society are lying aholes

This is a post that I've been thinking about for a few days now and it's rough, raw, emotional and if you don't like it that's fine.  I'm not writing it for you.  I've combined two ideas into one, because it works for me.  

I heard about the news of Robin Williams passing somewhere in Virginia.  I'm not exactly sure where, because my dad and I were in the process of moving 90% of my belongings to Vermont so I can start my new journey.  Like many I was stunned, shocked, and didn't want to believe it.  I couldn't.  Williams has been such a huge part of my life that its weird to think that we'll never see the humor and laughter in his eyes again.  Or hear the Genie's voice or any of the thousands of others that Williams could do. This YouTube video captures some of what I feel about Williams passing:

The news reporters being the jackasses that they are, went with "facts" that "speculated" that Williams had died of a drug overdose.  This was of course incorrect as it was revealed that Williams had been suffering from depression and committed suicide.  I had to keep driving to unload the truck and then turn around and drive 18 hours back to Georgia so that I can finish my life here, before moving to Vermont for the next couple of years, if not longer.  But my brain turned and turned, along with other things that have fired my brain into wanting to create and draw, which is a good thing.  It's also made me stop worrying, for the moment at least, on what others may say about what I want to create and write and do, which is also a good thing. And this post is one of those things.

Some of the events: Robin Williams passing; Ferguson, MO; an ARC of Liz Prince's Tomboy, Erika Moen's comic "I want to live," and preparing and moving a large portion of my belongings and life to Vermont.  Dots of connection in life, time, space, and everything in between and led me to think about my life.  The parts and events and everything that led me to where I am and to where I'm going.

I plan on writing a comic about my experiences with depression.  Williams passing has of course influenced it, as well as Moen's comic, posts by TheBloggess, Lee Thompson Young's death last fall, and others.  I won't share everything here that comic will have, but here is some of it: Depression for me is battling a monster.  A 15 foot tall, 20,000 pound beast, with razor sharp claws and intelligence that gives physical scars and whispers into my ear leaving wounds that gape open.  Some scars are small, some are deep, but while they may no longer bleed, they were never really heal.  The scars are cumulative and painful and we wear them and hope and plead that someone else will see them, but they may never. Some do, but they don't understand depression doesn't heal. Ever. It never goes away. We may beat it back, but it is still there waiting to come again.

Another part of the comic will deal with depression and suicide.  That is something that also struck me about Williams death that people have trouble understanding that depression doesn't care who you are, what you make, what you do for a living...it strikes none the less.  And some of the things people said about Williams suicide...well frankly they were and are horrifying.  The Bloggess says it best:  "Depression is a lying bastard" and as much as we may know it, it knows how to dig its claws into the brain and leave gaping wounds.  It says things like "Did you see how they flinched when you came in?  You're upsetting them. You. Not the situation, not the weather. It's you." It forces us to wall ourselves off and hide in hopes of not hurting others and then says things like "See. They don't care. And the ones that do all you do is hurt them.  They would be better off with out you."  That....that is some of what I have heard over the years, that is what has led me to wishing to have a button, like Erika draws in her comic, to remove me from this world.  It isn't that I didn't think about the people around me or those that I would leave behind, it is that I thought they would be better off without me around.  Depression is a lying asshole.  I am not listening to it now and I know it is lying...but it will come back.  And all I can do is believe that I am strong enough and have the support I need to fight the beast.

And this ties into the realization that "modern society" is also a lying ahole.  And there will be a comic about it.  It's inspired, in part, by Liz Prince's Tomboy.  And in part by the fact that "society" wishes to tell us what is and isn't the right way of doing things or being.  It does it with depression. It does it with life.  And I'm tired of society trying to tell me what it is that I'm supposed to be or do.  I tweeted about it last night:

I will make a comic about this.  And society and depression can bite me.  In remembrance of Robin and others that have fought and continue to fight depression I leave you with these videos:  

and this idea:
The lies will not win today and tomorrow will bring a new day and a new battle.  Make of it what you will.  Make of it what you may.  Make it better.  Make it different.  Make it weirder.  Most of all make it you.