Odd Observations from a Skewed Perspective

Follow suit. Especially bathing suits.

Why can’t I be angry at Robin?

Let his gentle smile guide you into that good phone call and find the help you need!

It took the death of an icon to put create a poster child for Capital-D Depression.

He was a hero to so many, kind in myriad ways, and yet so very troubled. The pain and sadness and outpouring of support and awareness for people living with depression has been astonishing.

His death struck a symphony of heartstrings, and now heads turn and ears bend to hear what depression has been like, is like, and should be like. It is Mr. William’s smiling face that remind us that there is a number that people can call.

I am angry. Yes. Normal part of grief. How can anyone say that I, or by gods, his daughter, could not feel cheated out of lives we’d lost when those we loved took them from us? How could anyone dare call this kind and generous man, Robin freaking Williams, ‘selfish’ at the darkest point in his life?

I’ve been there.

I could come up with a million ways to say how impossible it is to convey the constant ache that living with depression is. There aren’t analogies that really express the true exhaustion that comes from struggling day after day. The very dangerous and easily tipped cycles that are often the result of a damaged time in our lives.

There are the lies that forever and with Hitler-esque charisma say that I am not good enough. The echoes of memories that I’m not worth the trouble to decipher the darkness I’ve got rolling around in my head. All the dialects, of all the languages of the world cannot capture the enormity of this whirlpool. Some days I can stay the wheel and try to keep an even keel.

Some days I can’t.

Some days I’m crushed under the weight of all that I want, what could be, and how responsible I am for it all. I didn’t ask for this. Like a boozed up alien raccoon bemoaning his freakish existence, I didn’t ask to be made this way. I don’t try to do it. It’s just suddenly there, occupying every available space of my brain like the popcorn at the end of Weird Science. Then comes the guilt from not being able to ‘get over it’ as I’m told, or, “feel better’ ‘smile’ et cetera, ad nauseuam, sit vis vobiscum.

Robin’s head sure had a lot of popcorn.

He gave us such immeasurable joy, of which the world will continue to recount in their various ways. Each post, each tweet, each mention and rewatching of a favorite film is an homage to a great fellow.

But what about the rest?

Depression hasn’t been faceless before now. Too many lost souls have been raged at from beyond, victim shamed in the grave as selfish: Lonely, stricken, frightened, and believing their doing the world a favor. Wives, sons, friends, lovers, all of them with names and faces and people they’ve left behind.

I couldn’t leave mine behind.

I had the method. I had the carefully laid plan. I had the opportunity. But I couldn’t leave mind behind.

I was strong enough then, at that moment. Strong enough to survive a night in the Ward and make damn sure I wasn’t going to do that again. I made it then, and got help.

Not enough people do. They look like Mr. Williams. They look like soccer moms and smiling mail carriers. They look like kids, bullied or not. They look like soldiers. They are successful. They are not. They are every end of the spectrum. We’ve let them slip through the cracks for so long. For that, I’m angry. It took the loss of this sweet and hurting gentlemen to get Depression the awareness that the tragedies that came before him could not.

So yeah, I’m a little angry at him. How dare you, Patch! Pan! Moon King! Dearest Robin, friend on the screen. I’ve watched you grow through your art and your medium and granted me laughter even through tears. How could you take so much from us, we that loved you?

I’m the selfish one. I don’t want you gone.

Depression doesn’t discriminate, and is a condition perpetuated by disconnection. Easy answer to that is reach out, without judgement, to the people who have shut themselves away. It’s a lot easier to do these days. Show these people they are worth your time for a call, or a message.


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