Though I wouldn’t call myself an artist in any professional sense of the word, I am rather left-brained. It would seem that often madness and emotional turmoil go hand in hand with a heightened imagination and deeper need to nurture the soul through creative endeavors.
Growing up, my father always played the Blues.
Though he doesn’t make as much music anymore, as a child I was constantly surrounded by musicians from his time touring before he met my mother. We constructed a wall to block off the family room area and built a studio. At one point I owned 11 basses, 1 upright bass, a mandolin, a bouzouki, a banjo, a harmonica, 2 keyboards and a host of smaller, eclectic instruments (as well as all my father’s guitars).
Also a night-owl like me, I remember my father awake until the wee hours of the morning listening to music through headphones turned up so loud that I could still hear the faint melody through my bedroom walls. He was always so excited by the interest I had taken in making music.
I still make music every day. I also draw, paint, record…perhaps the thing that draws me most, however, is my writing. When I was younger, I wrote thousands of pages about the fantasy world I dreamt I lived in on my blue-rubber iBook. I wrote so much that I had to get an external hard-drive – it’s funny to think how computers have progressed over the past 15 years. This world I visited each day inside my head was so real to me I have to wonder if, in some other reality, it was not. Though I have abandoned my fantasy world for a more realistic, somewhat existentialist genre of writing, my words have never lost their importance in my life.
Now fast-forward to when I was 20 years old and…
I accidentally committed myself.
But that’s another story entirely. However, this is the one time in my life when I was prescribed psychopharmaceuticals. For about a month, I took the medication as directed. To be honest with you, yes, they did work. I wasn’t depressed anymore. I didn’t feel everything so desperately to the core of my being to the point of fearing myself.
But I didn’t feel anything anymore.
I wasn’t depressed. I wasn’t happy. I wasn’t excited. I wasn’t afraid. I couldn’t feel love. And I could not love. And this, to me, was just no way to live.
I wasn’t inspired anymore. I didn’t create anymore. I felt no drive to release the bleeding color from my mind and onto paper. I had no passion. So I stopped taking them.
What makes life worth living
is the fact that I feel
so deeply that
it sets fire
to my soul —
It’s hard for many people to understand, just as I’m sure it’s easily understood by many others like me. But I really am happy being unhappy. And as hard as it sometimes is to survive,
I wouldn’t trade my depression
for all the happiness in the world —