Standing On The Bridge (Part 2)

I remember trying to summon everything that I had ever heard, read, seen or been told about depression. Heck, as we spoke I was straight up Googling stuff. But, very quickly, all of that fell away. It hit me that there was nothing I could learn quickly enough for it to have any impact on what was happening at that moment. So, I got off my phonebook. I got off Google. I just sat, with the Facebook chat window open, cursor blinking, with heart-breaking words popping up one after the other. So we did what seemed like the only human thing to do, we spoke.

We spoke about the damage of having an unfulfilling career/job can have, with examples of famous creatives who took their lives because of such situations. Because there’s this construct that we seemed to have been willingly herded into that fosters this belief that one is born into set phases of life. This construct is rigid, cold and unrelenting. Go to school, get a job, get married, have babies, get old, die. Seeking any kind of respite from this cycle will only invite scorn and judgement from those who have lost sight of their own individual light.

We spoke about the scars of parenting, since we are both parents to young boys. Sometimes, a parent can scar you, despite their best intention, through their own ill-informed decisions. Sometimes, a parent can scar you and be totally oblivious to it. Sometimes, a parent can scar you, be aware of it, but do nothing about it. Sometimes, a parent can scar you, and it is their conscious intention to scar you as deeply as humanly possible. You will probably spend the rest of your life asking yourself why a person, who was implicit in creating your very being, would actively seek to hurt you that bad. It is very likely that you will never find the answer.

Then, at some point, you become a parent too. By then, you have mastered dressing up your scars so that the world never sees them. But, having a child, spending each day with them, at some point life will leave you bare and naked. Your child will see your scars. It may very well be that, the simple act of seeing your scars will in itself, scar your child. That is because in that moment, their image of whom they thought you were shatters. This could turn out to be for the best or the worst. You could end up despising the child for having seen your scars or hating them for fear of them rejecting you. But, in itself it is not an outcome set in stone.

We spoke about the importance of having a partner who not only loved your beauty and your glow, but one who could sit with you in dark and help you to find your own light. What happens if the one who loves you fears your demons? What if they love being with you in your sunshine but flea when your sun sets and your night comes?

We spoke about friendship. Not the friendship of having people to take group selfies with or have #SquadGoals tags with. But the friendship that is a fundamental part of you are as a human being. There are those friends that you may see a few times a year yet, your connection is far stronger that those you #TurnUp with on the regular. I ask you, how do you create such friendship?

We spoke about self-image. All you are is a collection of the memories you have chosen to remember about you. Like little lego blocks. Why is it that we sometimes choose our worst memories to construct who we are today? But what also happens is that those around you then construct their own understanding of you based on their own memories of themselves and how they experience life.

We touched on God. But when you are facing death, you do not have the time to delve in the gnostic complexities of a divine entity. No, when you are facing death, God is either real or he is not and, you basically leave it to Him to decide. But, nonetheless, you pray. You pray because that is all you can do. Words must still come out of you because you fear that the silence will snatch those last moments out of your hands.

We spoke about the hopelessness of hope. Regardless of what happens to you, the sun will not stop shining, life will go on. During the conversation, she thanked me for listening but pointed out that, ‘if I make it back alive, I will know that I have failed yet again to jump off this planet’. I typed a reply of some sort, I pressed send but, the message wouldn’t go through. I went to Facebook to see what the issue was. I went to her profile and facebook said her profile no longer existed. Just like that, she was gone.

 

  • Banele Rewo
    9th Oct 2015

    From the age of 19 to about 23 I had the depression and anxiety. It was the worst and best thing to happen to me. I got out of it without pills, or professional help. I literally had to separate by mind from my being…I realised that depression is basically worry, worry is your mind/ego trying to protect its pride. And it festers when you keep it to yourself, it wants you to be alone because that’s what it feeds on. The most powerful words I used against depression was “Yes, I am depressed, I am aware,” each time the feeling came to me I would acknowledge its presence, therefore depleting it of its power to ‘argue” with me on it’s terms. This started a healing process then I started talking about it to people as if I was fighting a battle, but I did not tell it from a victim stance but from an active in battle narrative. It is because of it I now know the difference between happiness, joy, sadness and disappointment. It never really left it comes now and again during various stages of life but it has no power, it part of me like laughter and sadness and all other emotions.

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