It’s been a pretty sad week, y’all. There is so much anger and hurt and sadness in the news. It’s a struggle to keep up, and sometimes I feel the need to shut a lot of it out. We don’t have cable or even live TV in our house, and getting news from Twitter and Facebook is overwhelming and sometimes not very reliable. I’m just feeling bowled over by it all, but then I push it aside to attend a birthday party or play LEGOs and it’s almost like nothing out of the ordinary is happening at all. I like those moments, but ignoring breaking monumental news doesn’t make it go away.
I’ve never experienced true depression. Usually if I do, it’s due to stress or overwhelm. But even in those small moments it’s hard to reach out, hard to convince myself that I’m not interrupting someone’s busy day or that anyone would want to be bothered with my little issue. When the stressor is lifted, so is the sadness. I am fortunate.
I read some pretty incredible things the past few days regarding Robin Williams and depression. I decided to collect a few of the ones that I felt most moved by here, but honestly, there is SO MUCH. My poor brain was feeling over saturated and I just had to draw the line somewhere. But if you have a story to share that you feel would help others connect or understand, it’s important that you do so. Your story is valid, and no one can tell it like you can.
If you have read or written a post that you would like to share, please leave the link in the comments. I’d love to read it, and I’m sure others would too.
Robin Williams and why funny people kill themselves – “The medium has nothing to do with it — comedy, of any sort, is usually a byproduct of a tumor that grows on the human soul.”
Robin Williams: Where comedy and tragedy intersect – From Leslie Marinelli of In the Powder Room. “For someone as universally adored as Robin Williams to commit suicide, it is more clear to me than ever that depression is an equal-opportunity illness, and addiction is its evil sidekick, lurking in the shadows.”
There’s nothing selfish about suicide – From Katie Hurley on the Huffington Post. “People who say that suicide is selfish always reference the survivors. It’s selfish to leave children, spouses and other family members behind, so they say…Until you’ve stared down that level of depression, until you’ve lost your soul to a sea of emptiness and darkness… you don’t get to make those judgments. You might not understand it, and you are certainly entitled to your own feelings, but making those judgments and spreading that kind of negativity won’t help the next person. In fact, it will only hurt others.”
Suicide and choice: An open letter to Matt Walsh – From Reverend Jean-Daniel Williams. “If I commit suicide, perhaps, as you claim, it will be ‘’my’’ choice. But I doubt it. I have spent more than half my life listening to my own body betray me, my own mind telling me that it would be better to die. And while my external life circumstances have varied how tempting those whispers are, nothing has ever gone so well that they have stopped. No saving relationship with my Lord Jesus Christ. No compassionate bride holding my hands at the altar. No giggling twins in my arms. Nothing has made depression go away.”
Why I am furious with Robin Williams – “I’m furious that his death has made me wonder if there may come a day when I’m not strong enough to fight. I’m terrified and enraged that his taking his own life has made me question myself.”
Robin Williams, Matt Walsh, Joy, and Silence – From Heather of the Extraordinary Ordinary (and my former LTYM director whom I will really miss getting pancakes with this coming show season) “In reality, we don’t get to make our own conclusions about Robin Williams and his inner turmoil. In the same way, we don’t know why people like Matt Walsh feel inclined to use their platforms the way they do, believing they are doing some kind of good. We can’t name exactly what is broken in either of these lives. But just like you and me, both of these men are a mysterious joy and pain in one body, one soul. Matt Walsh says that the depressed person simply needs joy. I wonder if he knows that we each already have joy, and that so often, the pain of living, or the pain of illness or loss, suffocates that joy like a cobra around its neck.”
Depression Lies – From Jenny Lawson, The Bloggess. The video is worth each and every of its 10 minutes.
Robin Williams’ divine madness will no longer disrupt the sadness of the world – If you’ve never read an essay by Russell Brand – yes, THAT Russell Brand, then you are missing out. Brand is a phenomenal writer. “When someone gets to 63 I imagined, hoped, I suppose, that maturity would grant an immunity to adolescent notions of suicide but today I read that suicide isn’t exclusively a young man’s game. Robin Williams at 63 still hadn’t come to terms with being Robin Williams.”