For years I’ve battled with depression. What I never understood and took into account was the other side of the coin. Euphoria.
Euphoria is like a fire dance. It looks good against the darkness but when the fuel runs out then you still have the darkness.
Having never been diagnosed with the label ‘Bi-Polar’ I never considered the intense ‘ups’ of my experience to be anything more than the expression of my natural ebullience for life. These energies would manifest in quite excessive behavior which merely fitted my self-image as a ‘bit of a rebel’.
I could live with that and rather liked the label as it gave me license to do crazy stuff, wear outlandish clothes, smoke and drink myself silly. Nothing wrong with that I thought! No, not much! Apart from the obvious physical damage, there was something else. What I hadn’t taken into account was the other me. The sensitive, shy, thoughtful and serious me that wanted to be taken ‘seriously’ as an artist but never really got a look in because ‘bolshy sista!’ was in command…most of the time.
The other me showed up on the back of the Black Dog (Depression) and came in all tears and insecurity. I hated her! Or at least ‘queen bitch’ hated her and called her horrid names which made her cry even more. I would sit up with insomnia night after night doing yoga, smoking cigarettes, eating or surfing on the internet because I couldn’t get any head peace, such was my torment!
Now I understand why I could never resolve the depression until now. I was attached to the ‘high’ me and that person didn’t know how to stop!
The tormented ‘come downs’ and psychotic breakthroughs were clearly a result of my reckless drug taking and my relentless pursuit of creative and sexual highs! Ultimately, the ‘high life’ became my undoing.
Today I am more sober than ever and happier than I’ve ever known. I’ve had some sense knocked into me at last, but I couldn’t hear the truth of the matter for years as I played the fool to cover over my insecurities. It was a mere front for the longing I really felt to be recognized by others. A simple desire to be loved for who I truly was, even though I couldn’t see her except through the eyes of a few staunch believers.
I am finally relieved of the mantle I set many years back when I looked to role models that were skin deep. I thought I could be a Blondie without knowing anything more than her image. I thought I could be a rebel but found out that I didn’t really have anything to rail against because I was a middle class girl who ostensibly had everything.
Why do it? Because we were too young to know the difference between the lipstick life and the rich bounty of life in the secure lane and we were never taught by security. We were taught rules and what not to do.
I don’t resent my upbringing but it does leave me asking, are kids really getting it any different today? Are they learning about what makes them tick or are they being told what not to do and left high and dry when they step out of line.
Is your rebel really an insecure creative looking to fly her own skies with the bounty of her full gusto?
Photo Credit Ritvik