Depression: O.E.D : Psychiatry : A mental condition characterised by feelings of severe despondency and dejection, typically also with feelings of inadequacy and guilt, often accompanied by lack of energy and disturbance of appetite and sleep.’
Hospital Ward, New jersey: young woman in hospital bed hooked up to a drip.
‘Do you think you might be… depressed?’
Said the gentle yet butch raspy-voiced Jersey Girl Nurse, who was doing her best to make me smile while plying me with mini cans of ginger ale in the Emergency Room while she pumped my arm for the umpteenth time that day to check my blood pressure. I had been driven to the hospital after a week being too tired to move, bed bound, lifeless. (Depression has crept onto the stage behind the hospital bed, unbeknowest by actors).
‘We’re gonna do this ONE more time,’ she had said, as she just could not believe that as a slender, 25 year old woman, my blood pressure could possibly be higher than that of an aged obese man with heart-problems and a daily McDonald’s habit that he still refused to give up.
‘No. I AM NOT Depressed. Absolutely not…There is something seriously wrong with me, and it is PHYSICAL. I just don’t know what it is yet.’
I was unshakable on this, despite the fact that all the tests they had just run (and charged me thousands of dollars for) had all come back showing NOTHING. Yep, I think it’s fair to say that my extremely raised blood pressure also had something to do with the dollar signs that had been spinning in my head from the second I had been registered as a patient that morning…no, from when I had even got in the car to go there. (Anxiety has run on the stage and is flapping around in a desperate panic.) These had only been exacerbated by the fact that as these tests were being carried out, President Obama was pictured up on the TV screen at the end of my hospital bed making a speech about how his ‘Medicare’ insurance package would not cover ‘pre-existing conditions’. As a British Citizen,medical insurance in the first place was completely alien to me. I could not believe that in this country you would run up a bill of $3,000 simply by stepping foot in an ambulance… quite simply if you had no insurance, or couldn’t afford the bill, you weren’t entitled to life.
I hadn’t considered for one second that I would have to even use the medical insurance I had to take out as a pre-requisite for my being accepted on the Guggenheim internship programme. When I set it up I saw it as absolutely nothing but a begrudged extra-expense that would undoubtedly go on to prove completely unnecessary. I had barely even glanced at it. How wrong I was. Lying in that hospital bed I knew this much though, it sure as hell wouldn’t cover ‘pre-existing conditions,’ which I suspected this was. I was visualising the faces of my already cash strapped parents when they found out, not thinking for a second that they would be concerned about my wellbeing, oh no, but rather, how much this was going to cost them…Oh the GUILT! (Award-winning performance by Anxiety here)
Who the hell was I kidding? I was as depressed as they get. This was textbook.
For most of my life I’ve been far too scared to even begin to discuss my depressive periods with anyone else, even those closest to me. To be honest for the most part I was simply too frightened to even re-visit these experiences in my own mind (even in times of ‘sanity’) as they were so traumatic. Why is that? We do we bury these experiences, even from ourselves? Why are we are we so ashamed of openly discussing our darkest times with one another that we hide them shamefully deep inside?
‘It’s ME’. ‘No one could possibly understand…’… I, I, I, I, I…. me, me, me, me, me…
Are we afraid to be seen as vulnerable? Are we worried that no one else could possibly go to the scary places that our minds have taken us? Do we feel we’ve been dealt a particularly unlucky hand in this life? Worse than anyone else? Do we not talk about it because we fear that other people might think we’re going completely insane?! ARE WE?!
We really need to start being up-front about it. It’s not something to be secretive about anymore; it’s not something to be ashamed of; it’s something we need to get fully out in the open and be achingly raw and honest about as there are far too many of us suffering from this modern-day epidemic (which, if you stick with me, as I journey from the personal to the cosmic and back, I’m going to argue IS curable). How do we find this ‘cure’? Well, it ain’t in no anti-depressive pill that’s for sure, we need to go to the root, not just to numb out the symptoms. In fact what we need now it isn’t a ‘cure’ in the conventional sense at all. The 21st century demands different cures, not on the level of the body, or mind, but on the level of consciousness. This is the root. And not just on the level of individual consciousness, but on the level of collective consciousness. It demands that we pan the camera as far out from the close-up as we can, to the completely impersonal bird’s eye view. As my favourite Spiritual Ecologist Charles Eisenstein writes in his article ‘Mutiny of the Soul’: ‘Depression, anxiety, and fatigue are an essential part of a process of metamorphosis that is unfolding on the planet today, and highly significant for the light they shed on the transition from an old world to a new.’ So… basically in order to cure this beast we have to face up to depression on the planetary level…cool. But HOLD UP: Depression, when you are held within its suffocating grip, can feel earth-shatteringly personal, in fact when we are suffering from it we cannot escape our own problems for even one second, and the world’s problems are our problems, and they dwarf everything else in existence. So I hope you’ll agree with me that before we get to the cosmic, first of all we need to zoom right in.
I am ready for my close up...
I’m evidently a lot better at talking about my depression these days. For a long time I was not. I can remember little glimpses of honesty- like the time I was 18, outside a nightclub in the smoking area, huddled in the corner with a party pal about whom I didn’t know much, but I did know that he suffered, like I was beginning to discover I did, from bouts of depression. Brazened by the dutch courage and magic pills, undercut with desperation, I confided in him: ‘when I feel down I can’t imagine ever feeling any other way…but when I feel good I can’t imagine ever feeling any other way.’ I can’t remember his response that night but I do recall that even through the haze of the cigarette smoke, and our inebriated, self-medicated, escapist states, we connected DEEPLY. He knew. And although it was only for a split second I felt heard:
It wasn’t just me.
In many ways I still stand by the simplicity of my 18 year old self’s statement: when you’re down in that hole often you can see no way out, you’re gonna die down there. But if you make it out, when you’re out of it (and I mean you’ve hopped, skipped and jumped into the next field at least) you can’t ever imagine falling back in. But there’s a LOT of stuff going on down in that hole, we need to get a bit archaeological on it. After the dig is complete and we’ve uncovered and safely stored away any important artefacts, I plan to build us a ladder out, then for us to fill in the hole, cover it over with earth and dance gleefully on top (in complete sobriety), yay! But there’s no way round it, we’re going to have to jump right on in there and get a bit muddy. I warn you, it’s pretty fucking dark down there.
It’s a bottomless abyss; a hollowness; an emptiness; a heavy grey cloud that sometimes weighs down so heavily on your head that even as soon as you wake up in the morning all you can muster the energy to think is: ‘what’s the fucking point?’ Being awake seems pointless, let alone speaking, or thinking. Life is like wading through treacle. Having the drive to make yourself something to eat, go to work, or God forbid, to spend time with any of your friends and loved ones seems unthinkable. It makes you feel that somehow despite everyone you know- and who once upon a time might have cared for you and you for them- well, they sure as hell don’t care for you now. No, you are completely and utterly alone in the world. Perhaps it would in fact be a better place if you simply weren’t in it altogether? You are at a complete loss with yourself and you are at a complete loss with the world. Lifting your arm to drink a glass of water feels like an endurance test. Nothing tastes of anything: water tastes vile, food tastes like eating charred coal dust. Your limbs are heavy, your eyelids droop, your speech is slow and maybe even slurred, when you can even be bothered to talk that is– sometimes it is an Herculean effort to even shape your mouth to form the words and when you do your vocabulary is miniscule. You sound more like a malfunctioning robot than a human being. In fact you feel like even more of a malfunctioning robot as the words themselves just don’t seem to make any sense anymore, what’s the fucking point of even bothering to try and say any? Even breathing…
It’s ME. It’s no use. No one else could possibly understand…
But then, we also have to remember that depression is more often that not accompanied by the unlikeliest of bedfellows- Anxiety. Unlike depression, anxiety could not move more quickly if it tried. In fact, it just won’t fucking stop. It is relentless. Anxiety attaches overblown complex meanings to absolutely everything, no matter how small and insignificant. It has the biggest vocabulary there is and every single word in its dictionary is derogatory and negative. It convinces you that you are, in fact, the worst person in the world and are to blame for everything that has ever happened to you, and to those around you. It has MILLIONS of ways of doing this: using examples from the entire back catalogue of your life to date and likely some created entirely out of thin air. Yes, anxiety is depression’s ill-suited partner- it is like one of those relationships where you simply can’t understand how on Earth they managed to get together in the first place because they are just SO different- opposites attract perhaps?! Either way, bets are hedged that this is a relationship that is going to end in disaster.
Unlike depression, where everything, no matter how small, will illicit the same ‘what’s the fucking point’ response, anxiety, on the other hand, is characterised by a fast and irregular heart beat, quick shallow breathing, darting eyes that can’t focus on anything, the babbled speech, and the mile-a-minute thoughts that spiral round and round in your head ALL night long, or perhaps even most of the day (that is when you’re not so despondent and dejected that even the idea of turning on your mobile phone makes you feel ‘what’s the fucking point, it’s not like anyone will want to get in touch with me anyway.’) Ironically although during the day Depression can’t get out of bed…. at night, and maybe even for significant parts of the day, Anxiety makes sure that you get absolutely no sleep whatsoever. You spend hours ruminating over the same things, over and over again- that unforgivable thing you said/did- yesterday, last week, 2 years ago, when you were 7 years old. That or the extent to which everyone must hate you… but no matter how much they hate you no one could hate yourself more than yourself. Anxiety can make it feel like there is no scarier place in the world than inside your own mind. It is an abyss, but one of a different kind to depression. It feels like there is no escape, no escape from the thoughts, no escape from inside your own mind, no escape from yourself. It can feel like you are teetering on the very edge of the precipice of existence and there is nothing tangible left that you can hold onto, all that exists is the whirling torrent of negativity between your ears. It can get to the point where you would give anything just for it to STOP.
‘It’s ME. It’s ME. It’s ME…’
But…IS it you? Are we not feeling the same things here? Then, it’s not just you, it’s me as well, hell, it’s LOADS of us. And we don’t have to feel this way. We really don’t.
But we’ve still got a bit more digging to do…
I have had 3 nervous breakdowns in my life (3 BIG ones that is.) The first was down mostly down to drugs and alcohol and the dark alleys that addiction leads you down- I was 18 years old (around the time of my smoking-section confessional). The second was again, mostly down to drugs and alcohol, but on top of that there was a failed relationship and a sense of directionless after finishing university. The third was an altogether different beast (the opening scene of this article is fairly representative)- yes, alcohol was still involved (tends to be, doesn’t it?) but there was also multiple failed relationships, even an abusive one, work addiction, and a whole host of other addictions to boot on top of the booze… This is just my personal list – for others it might be a series of unfortunate events, losses, illness and death,concerning ourselves or those we care about. Either way, whatever the narrative/story or content of our list is, the result is the same: we crack.
For me, number 3 was a nervous breakdown that didn’t just leave me fragile for a few weeks, or months (like 1 and 2). Nope, 3 took it to the next level. In fact, it took me to the brink of death and in its wake left me saddled with a chronic illness that I am still coming out of over 3 years later. For me it was definitely third time lucky, as this last one (which reached its peak at the grand old age of 25) really made me sit up and take notice. My third nervous breakdown caused me to hit rock bottom (I went as far into the abyss as you can get without dying). I have to say that it really did crack me wide open. It sent me on a quest where the only way out of this was to find out, once and for all: what really is the fucking point of this life thing? And I WENT for it: I cut out the booze, fags and drugs forevermore, I became celibate (thankfully not forever more, in the end, but for all the time I needed which turned out to be a couple of years), I moved to the countryside and became a hermit; I took up Kundalini yoga, which enabled me to reach transcendental planes; I meditated until I reached altogether unimaginable states of consciousness; to massively overgeneralise I tried every form of hippy-dippy shenanigans imaginable – I kept the Truth and threw out the fluff… (although some of the fluff is still fun) For more on all of this have a read of some of my other blogs.
But I GOT THERE.
And I’ve brought back some pearly pearly pieces of wisdom to share…
But for now stillllllll not quite done with the digging, with depression there is a lot of digging the same hole, deeper, deeper, deeper…
Back in the hole… Once I’d admitted defeat after soldiering on for a good month or two after that climactic episode Stateside and had flown home to my parents, in the weeks and months following, I was, on more than one occasion, verging on suicidal.
Suicidal thoughts are those that make us feel like the world would be a much happier place if we were no longer in it. I have to say that I have only had these at the pivotal junctures of the 3 nervous breakdowns, and ,thank God, I never acted on them. In my case when I have reflected on these the thing that strikes me most is that these thoughts used to be in the most chipper voice. Each nervy-B, they came in the same format- a sing-song, devil may care, flippant remark of ‘you know you might as well kill yourself,’ in the exact same tone as you might think to yourself ‘you know, you might as well stay awake for the last part of the film because you’ll be disappointed if you miss the end.’ They would pop up in such a la-dee-dah fashion and at the strangest of times- the last of which I remember so vividly- when I was going to check my make-up in the bathroom mirror, before heading out of my flat shortly before I moved away from the city and back to my childhood home to focus on recovery.
What does this tell me? We have to be VIGILANT. We have to watch our thoughts like a hawk, and try our best to realise we are NOT them, and do our best to observe them, talk them round, and be careful not to act on them in situations like this.
YOU ARE NOT YOUR THOUGHTS. A really good practice for when you identify a negative thought is to ask yourself: ‘Is that true?‘ You might be met with a whole host of reasons as to why it is… let that fearful voice of defensiveness and exasperation exhaust itself, then ask again: ‘Is that true?‘
(Is it?… Thought not.)
Then ask yourself THIS question: ‘what would love do here?’
The choice is ALWAYS the same: the choice between fear and love. Choose wisely. Fear comes in MANY forms. We have to become experts in identifying it, and taking the other road: love.
It’s as easy as that, but man, it sounds a lot easier than it is, it can be the hardest thing in the world to learn to overcome those dark voices that can exert so much power over us, and sometimes, like at that moment, it’s unbelievably scary.
I really needed some help with this…
When I talk about therapy I’m not talking about a few sessions with a counsellor who helps you to ascertain that you’re feeling down and that you need to rest and pick yourself back up again. Nope, I’m talking about the kind of therapy that tears you down and breaks you apart into the tiniest little pieces and then slowly and carefully helps you to pick up all the pieces and create the jigsaw of why your life ended up being so messed up, and how, by fully understanding your past, your patterns (and your parents, you REALLY gotta understand your parents) you can move into the future knowing your triggers and getting better at disarming yourself whenever you feel the urge to shoot.
We DO have to work out all the ‘personal’ reasons for our unhappiness, for our depression, and it’s a big task (and it’s not the only one as you will see in the final section), but it is life-saving.
Before I started therapy I felt like I was actually beginning to get quite a bit better. When I started therapy I collapsed again, I was a blubbering, verging on psychotic mess for months.
But you know what. That meant it was working.
I unravelled myself completely, but only in order to re-weave myself back together again, this time in a way that would last the course, in a way that was BEAUTIFUL. We may be digging around in the mud but we are finding the lotus, the rose in the manure, the diamond in the rough, the gold in the complete and utter pile of shit… It is no walk in the park. When you go into therapy, even though your time with your therapist may only be for an hour a week, or an hour a fortnight, you are in therapy ever single minute of every single fucking day and every torturous minute of every sleepless night.
And it’s the best thing ever.
When we are in therapy we learn how to listen to our internal voices, we take the time we need to understand them, and to learn how to meet their needs. To go back to the voice I heard say ‘you might as well kill yourself’… So, I witnessed that voice. I knew it was not me. As disconcerting as that moment was, I knew that I was on the right track. And although I didn’t know where the track was going to take me, I knew it was the path I needed to be walking on at that time. When you start to pay attention to your thoughts, to observe them, you realise that that one ‘voice’ you always had in your head is in fact SEVERAL, and they are all completely different characters. (Want to try this and can’t start therapy? Journal. Write, to yourself, write all your thoughts, day by day, watch how they fluctuate, watch all the different voices come out onto the page. Journalling is the best form of self-applied therapy I have come across, that and meditation, which is another form of observation, but this time purely observing. You really start to meditate when you start to hear a whole host of voices…)
Oh no, I really AM going insane now’… you think
But let me tell you something. During the depths of my illness I was lucky enough to have a few one-one-one sessions with an incredible doctor: one of the smartest, most together, reputable and forward thinking people I have ever had the pleasure of meeting. He has certainly found the golden nugget in his shit and has spent his career making huge inroads to revolutionising the health service. An hour with him with is like a YEAR of the most intensive therapy you can imagine. And he told me that one of the biggest breakthroughs he ever made was the realisation that there was not only one voice in his head, but several, in fact I think he said to me: ‘one day I counted them all. I discovered there were 9.’
I am also lucky enough to have the most amazing, no bullshit, completely enlightened, kick-ass therapist I could possibly imagine and over the time we have worked together (around 2 years now) I have learned to recognise MANY of my host of internal voices: so there’s my inner child (often very upset), my damaged inner feminine (hopeless), my damaged inner masculine (exhausted from trying too hard), my positive Divine feminine (deep and intuitive), my positive Divine masculine (passionate and energised), my inner Divine child (pure joy), my saboteur (‘you might as well just kill yourself’), my victim ‘IT’S ME!’ (I could go on…) And I have learned to implement new voices: my inner mother, my inner father, and one day, not long from now, when my therapy process is complete, I will be able to draw on my own inner therapist whenever I need her. There is one voice I have learned to listen to more than all the others, and that is the voice of my SOUL. And now that this relationship, the most important of all relationships, has been rebuilt the next step of the therapeutic process is to tentatively and patiently rebuild the ‘Ego’ in its positive aspect’the Self’: the ‘interface’ that we use to interact with the world. (It is not our body or our mind, they are entities unto themselves and completely interconnected, rather it is the holographic form of our identity as (insert your identity here) which allows us to incarnate in these separate bodies and experience this ‘life’ shin-dig, when our inner essence is something different altogether, and yet it is part of the same…
But, for now, to finish up with the voices (although we will be working with them for many years to come) So we are starting to HEAL when we realise there are MANY voices in our heads, its just that there are positive ones, and negative ones, that have been sadly shaped by our troubled childhoods and bad examples we have had growing up from our families, communities and environments, on both the local and global scale. We are not to FEAR the multiple voices, but to learn to distinguish between them all, listen to the helpful ones, and learn to comfort and placate the fearful ones, as deep down below the seemingly heartless ‘you might as well kill yourself’ is something that is really scared, and hurt, and simply needs to be loved.
We have to ask the question: ‘What would love do?’ and although it sounds like it wouldn’t work in every circumstance, IT DOES, and although we might not think we will be able to come up with answer as to what love would do, well WE WILL if we are patient and listen attentively, because beneath all the voices, beneath the identity interface, beneath our finite selves, our infinite state, and True identity is that we ARE love. And so when we ask this question, we are connecting with our true nature and putting it into action, instead of going against it (where all the suffering in the world comes from… and all the depression.) And yeah, ok… I simply CAN’T express in words just how I KNOW we ARE love. It’s a vibration. You have to FEEL it. But I DO know it, and you know it too. It is our natural state of being. We just have to re-learn how to access it again. We’ve gone terribly astray… and it hurts, but the path is still there. Your personal path is still there, our collective path is still there. Clear the path, do the work, meditate – uncover the shit, find the diamond. Get into your heart.
Therapy makes you go DEEP, and our therapeutic process doesn’t need to just take in ‘this’ life… Let me explain by going back to my suicidal thoughts: As I said, after I started witnessing my suicidal thoughts things did not get easier, no, in fact, they got a lot worse. My ‘depression’ had gotten so severe that it wasn’t just in my head anymore, it had overtaken my entire body and could be classified as ‘Chronic Fatigue Syndrome/M.E.’ I could barely get out of bed, and if I pushed myself too far, which is unavoidable if you want to have any semblance of a life, I would often reach the point of sheer physical and psychological pain where, although I wasn’t unconsciously thinking ‘you might as well kill yourself‘, I was consciously thinking, and at points asking: ‘you know what, this is just too hard, please take me now.’
I wasn’t ever taken.
However, ironically, it was also when the pain was at its very worst that I made a vow to myself that NO MATTER WHAT HAPPENED, NO MATTER HOW BAD IT GOT, I WAS NOT GOING TO KILL MYSELF. I remember it clearly, lying in bed (I couldn’t be anywhere else) in so much pain, I think I’d actually just lived through my own funeral in my head I felt so close to death’s door, and I said to myself, to God (life-destroying illnesses open you up to things you would have never considered previously), to whoever:
‘Ok- If you want me to die from this, then I accept, but I have done too much work on myself to end this myself.’
As crazy as it sounds, I KNEW that all this painful soul searching I had been doing was somehow purifying my soul. It’s hard to explain, but I knew, with complete certainty, that I had seriously ‘evolved’ through my struggles, and, despite not believing in re-incarnation previously, I KNEW that if I ended my life then I would just have to come back again, with the same issues to purify, and added on top of that would be the added karmic factor of my suicide. Nope. I was going to ride this out.
And that was a real turning point. I recognised that I was only one ‘me’ of MANY ‘me’s who had evolved through many many lifetimes, and I was sorting myself out, I was righting wrongs, I was accepting, forgiving, releasing… I wasn’t just ME, I was an infinite being having a finite experience of human life, and I was really starting to GET it! (I have started to get it so much so that I now know quite a lot about previous ‘me’s)… and I wasn’t going through this healing process just for me; but also for all my past ‘me’s and all my future ‘me’s on whatever plane of existence I am to journey to in the future.
Here’s the thing – a breakdown like this is no longer ‘depression’. What’s actually happening here is an initiatory evolutionary process of the soul towards enlightenment : ‘The Dark Night of the Soul.’ During the dark night of the soul the ego is completely shattered and you have to face every single little bit of your shadow. All the painful things that have ever happened to you, all your regrets, your bad decisions, your ignorance, your fear, and every time you have been unkind to others or yourself will come up to the surface and you have to re-live the mental, emotional and often physical emotions connected to these events. As traumatising as this is, they are coming up for one purpose only – to be released. This is a purification process. Your only job is to surrender, surrender, surrender, and find a way to choose love in EVERY circumstance. Meditate through it, go INTO it, do not resist. The pain comes from resistance. Accept it, accept yourself. Forgive them, forgive yourself. Release it/them, release yourself : ‘I love you; I’m sorry; please forgive me; thank you.’ And everything will be forgiven, there is nothing to forgive in the first place – your soul has always been perfect, everything else is just an illusion. Clear away the illusions to make way for the Truth. The ‘dark night of the soul’ should more accurately be called ‘the dark night of the ego’ as it is the process of the ego disintegrating so that the light of the soul, our true identity, can finally shine through. It is a breakdown to breakthrough, destruction to make way for a re-birth. It is an unavoidable part of the process towards remembering who we are. It FUCKING HURTS! But if we commit to it we will come through it, if we commit to it we will be rewarded with the secrets of the universe, if we commit to it we will develop the ability (*the actual PHYSICAL ability*) to feel love flowing through our veins and vibrating in our hearts and every cell of our being, and we will be able to call upon this energetic force *AT WILL* and from then on increasingly bathe in bliss daily – this is what your meditation practice will become, and from there you will learn to embody this love vibration more and more in your life. We will remember who we truly are. Others will feel it, and they will be drawn to you as in your light they will begin to remember their own. Once we have gone through the ‘dark night of the soul’ we are obligated to be the light, to shine as beacons for others going through it, and those who will one day. And let me tell you, this process that used to take place in a cave over 10 years, or in a spiritual community over 30, and only to a select few…it’s now happening faster and faster (my process was about a year) to more and more of us – in fact the entire planet, in all its chaos and destruction now, is entering into a collective ‘dark night of the soul’ – hold on tight! But we will get through it. Just like we will as individuals, and our job now is to demystify it so that we can each go through this process as quickly and painlessly as possible – a clean cut.
But try telling that to someone who is going through it. You simply cannot see the end when you are in it. It is Earth shattering, and you know what, to commit to staying with your life during the dark night takes some real fucking strength. A close friend of mine just couldn’t quite access his own strength when that crunch moment came, he committed suicide a few months ago. I know that people always say this, but honestly, this guy was genuinely one of the kindest, gentlest, most upstanding and wonderful people I have had the pleasure of knowing. (Part of me wishes I had written this article back when I first had the idea to write it… but I was too scared. I was too scared to reveal my darkest times and my out-there understanding of them, even though I knew my honesty would have the potential to help others. No more.) But we need to look at this: why is it that it is often the most sensitive, creative, caring, introverted, beautiful souls that commit suicide? Surely they can’t get to the point where their interior voices actually convince them that they are in fact the worst person in the world? But sadly they sometimes do… and if its not that it is that they just can’t live in this world anymore that has brought them so much pain. And you know what? Although it is important not to listen to that voice that tries to sabotage our life, there does come a point where it is important to work out: why on Earth would it say such a thing?
Staying Sane in an Insane World
And here’s what I came to:
It’s not you. It’s the world.
The world at times can be a fucking hard place to live in. We have forgotten who we are on a mass scale (dude, we’re infinite beings having a human experience in what is ultimately an illusory world.) But we’ve forgotten, and instead of loving each other we criticise and goad each other, we compete, we ostracise others and separate ourselves, not to mention we mistreat other living beings: human, animal, plant, mineral, and we have misused and abused our planet to the point that she is groaning underneath the weight of all the damage we have wrecked upon her, and if we don’t buck up our ideas soon it could actually be too late. We misunderstand death: we see it as something to be afraid of when all it is is a transition from one state of being to another, most often into another human life-time (that is until you become enlightened and get to leave the earthly plane altogether – fyi some of us come back so we can tell you about it.) But this being a human being thing is hard work isn’t it? We KNOW deep down life is supposed to be better than this (it IS I tell you, it is! But we have to do the work – meditate, clear, connect, remember who we ARE and then recognise that WE CREATE OUR REALITY WITH OUR THOUGHTS, so manifest wisely, do it from your soul). We might have become depressed as our life has had one unfortunate event after another – but this is either because we are actually manifesting that through our OWN negative thinking (we really do create our own reality fyi) or, the universe is showing us that we are off path and that we need to change direction. If we feel that we are experiencing things other than that then we are learning karmic lessons which enable us to learn, grown and evolve, but these also help to serve to get us on the right track. So whatever happens: go with the flow; flow don’t fight; and don’t resist: what you resist persists, so of we’re focussing on the negative (the stuff we don’t want) then we’re attracting more and more of that towards us! Ok, so I know I create MY reality and I take responsibility for creating negative situations and my karma but then what about the really unfathomable stuff? What about the sickness and death of those we love? Perhaps even our children? Every single individual is an eternal soul with a karmic balance sheet, just like you. They have had and will have many lives. This is just one of them, and they will evolve towards bliss and infinity. But yeah, in our earthly existence this is fucking hard. Is it any wonder that sometimes there’s a part of us that says: [impersonal]: ‘you know what: this place is crazytown and I want out.’ Or [personal]: ‘This lifetime I’ve chosen this time is just getting too far off track, I want off. Put me in another body. Or send me someplace else. I want off‘: (in my case when our Ego has taken over the running of the show and it forces us to climb to the top of the soulless contemporary art world when all our soul really wants to do is sing, dance, write, live in the country and teach yoga?!)
Whatever happens, don’t bail. It’s not an easy ride to leap off mid-way. You’ll just come straight back again, in another body, with the same lessons to learn, and then some. And you can’t go anywhere because IN THESE CHALLENGING TIMES THIS WORLD NEEDS US. RIGHT NOW. In fact – the clearer we can see what is wrong with it the MORE the world needs us as we can speak up and help others, whether on a small, large, or PLANETARY scale, to see how we can START DOING IT RIGHT. YOU HAVE A RESPONSIBILITY. Why waste time blaming the politicians, the world leaders, the capitalists, the industrialists, the agriculturalists, homo sapiens… We have to BE THE CHANGE we want to see in the world.
And you know how we can all do this? It’s simple! All you need to do is to follow your bliss! Share your Truth. Share your joy. Do the very thing that makes you truly happiest in the world. This is the key thing! The thing that is making you depressed is that you’re NOT doing it! We have all come here with a unique gift to give, a mission to carry out in service, which brings us GREAT joy and happiness. We need to be doing what we came here to do, and not something else, if we’re doing something else other than what we came here to do we’re going to end up getting lost. Go deep inside and ask yourself what your gift/mission is – what is the dream that would make you happiest in the world? You DO know the answer. Follow your dream, not someone else’s. If they cross-over, great, power to the collective! But let me tell you: it’s crunch time, we have to wake up now. Instead of jumping off, whether for personal or impersonal reasons, what we we have to do is change course, and if we need to we can change course dramatically. If you are changing course to align with the mission you have come here for you will have the entire universe behind you- mountains will move, miracles will become a daily occurrence, believe it! We have to find out who we really are and what we really came here to do. And when we know, we have a responsibility to LIVE it.
How do you know when you’ve hit upon what it is you’ve REALLY come here to do?: Well, it will without doubt be healing and not harmful, to anyone/anything. It will in some way or another be something that involves helping other people, or the planet, somehow bringing beauty, joy, or happiness into the world, oh, and love will be in there somewhere… And you’ll start to feel ALIVE again, your heart will flutter, your eyes will light up, you’ll want to sing and dance and you’ll feel like your LIFE HAS A PURPOSE, and that you CAN help make a difference in this world as things may have gone horribly wrong, but you will KNOW that they ARE reconcilable, we have to think long-term, and that every little thing that is healing instead of harmful is a positive step in the right direction… Depression? What depression?!
UNLESS WE’RE CONTRIBUTING TO BRINGING LIGHT TO/SAVING THIS BEAUTIFUL PLANET WE LIVE ON, KNOWING WE ARE INFINITE BEINGS IN FINITE BODIES AND LIVING FROM LOVE, WE WILL STILL BE AT RISK OF FALLING BACK INTO DEPRESSION. BE LOVE. IT IS WHAT YOU ARE. DO NOT BE AFRAID OF WHAT YOU ARE.
This is what’s really true about depression: it’s not you. It IS the world. But that’s OK. As we can CHANGE it. We can create a new world, together. And yes, sometimes the darkness in the world can get us down and we shut down because it feels like there is not enough light. But if you feel that, BE the light, and find the place that makes you connect with the light and base yourself there. The world is BEAUTIFUL. There IS light, and so much of it, there is reason for joy, celebration, creativity, happiness, healthiness, but sometimes we have to seek it out, sometimes we have to create it, and we have to join forces with it (we have this light inside of us too) and we have to put everything we have into making this light shine brighter and brighter, so that every living being remembers exactly what they are: LOVE. We are re-balancing a planet that has gotten WAAAAAAAAAYYYY off-kilter, it’s a tall order, but we’re DOING IT!
This is the most exciting time to be alive in the history of humanity! We are the ones we’ve been waiting for!
Let’s make sure that we are so open with and supportive of each other and that we step up to help our beautiful planet through this transition from the old world to the new. Let’s be fellow midwives for the Dark Night of the Soul. Through our darkness we will find the light. We can create the world anew, we are the ones to do it. We are the seeds. Sort out your personal shit (and take all the time you need to do it, because as you do it, you are helping to save the world and everyone in it, because you ARE it. As you heal yourself, you heal ALL others and the planet as we are all ONE. We are all LOVE.) But please, HEAL YOURSELF FIRST. Only when you have truly healed yourself will you know once and for all you are completely indivisible from everything and anything in existence (you’ll feel that love vibration, TRUST me!) and then EVERY act you take will be to heal and not harm, not just for the good of one, but for the good of ALL, which is ONE. And if you’ve healed yourself? Great- now you can be of even bigger service to the WORLD, she really needs you. Every single one of us needs to wake up and step up, NOW, be LOVE and complete the real missions we came here to do. Even though there is a lot of suffering in the world right now (and we are the world so we feel it, and the more sensitive we get, the more we feel it). But the UNIVERSE is LOVE (and WE ARE THE UNIVERSE) and there is MORE than enough love in the universe to overcome the suffering of the world. It is infinite. It is eternal.
So… Love. Just choose love. I need it. You need it. She needs it. He needs it, They need it. We need it. And it lasts forever.
Journey well, I love you… Xxxxxxxx
2 thoughts on “We Need to Talk about Depression : From a Girl with a Past of Nervous Breakdowns & Suicidal Thoughts, a Present of Therapy, and a Future of Staying Sane in an Insane World”
Awesome💖inspirational💖synchronous 💖 courageous💖 you have described with such clarity many of my life experiences. Your vision of the ‘now’ is something I recognise and share 💖 thank you so much for sharing this profoundly personal account💖 I couldn’t believe it when I read your phrase “walking through treacle” I said that about me last week!!! I’m blessed to have encountered you Emma💖 thank you💖sending you warm hugs and love x❤❤❤x
Thank you dearest Ann, I really appreciate your comments, as always. I will be seeing you soon! ❤ x