Hello Everyone, Welcome to the podcast “Close to the Bone.” I’m Carl Vreeland, your host.
This is episode #28, entitled, Depression
I listened to a radio program on depression about week or two ago, and the guest was talking about himself and a few others he interviewed who overcame depression. They spoke about how their lives had changed dramatically one day, whereas they were once productive, social, optimistic, hopeful, and happy, but suddenly found themselves to be quite the contrary. They fell into a dark depression, and turned uninspired, lethargic, and isolated. Overwhelmed with feelings of hopelessness, their view of the world and people grew melancholic.
This description, this experience struck me. It wasn’t my experience. There was no dramatic change in my life. Nothing I that can remember anyway. I never fell into a depression to know I was in one. I was never optimistic, happy, and hopeful, so there was no contrast. Depression was all I knew I suppose. I thought life was this way. No doubt, my somber state progressed over the years though, but my starting point was depression.
See, I always felt alienated, alone, and deeply uneasy. I was like a camera eye viewing the world from a distance, separate from the world and people; on the outside looking in, uncomfortable in my skin. I had nothing to compare my depression to, I didn’t know any different. My life was always cloudy and skewed. And, as I said, over the years it grew darker.
It’s not like I didn’t seek help at some point. I did discover an elixir that quieted my mind and numbed my body. Yes, alcohol and its magically qualities became my medicine. Although it didn’t cure me of my ills, I still adopted a negative view of the world, I turned cynical, pessimistic, and sarcastic. I developed a doom and gloom attitude. Life turned absurd. And I was convinced that I could never be happy. I mean, knowing that life is meaningless, how could I be happy. Happiness was a foolish, unrealistic notion that only blissfully, lighthearted people feigned. These good fakers, with phony smiles, weren’t really happy anyway, they were pretending they were, they were whistling in the dark, as I saw it, they had a dark side that they kept locked up in the basement that would reveal itself now and again. Yes, I had it all figured out. I knew it all. I knew that peace and happiness was unattainable, in fact, it didn’t exist. It’s just that most people were unwilling to admit to it, they wouldn’t dare consider it, they didn’t have the nerve to acknowledge it. It was a harsh reality that was too brutal to accept, as I saw it.
I suppose one could say I turned nihilistic. And I explored this state of being, whereas I dwelled on suicidal scenarios, and stepped into sexcapades such as S&M and bondage. On top of that, I experimented with harder drugs; cocaine, heroin, and morphine, and I became a heavy drinker. In truth though, I felt better when I drank and drugged. Life was at least tolerable when I was intoxicated and high. A state of oblivion was what I was after, it was where I was most comfortable. Looking back, I suppose I was unknowingly trying to transcend the self and my emotional and psychological suffering.
For me, life wasn’t worth living. It had no meaning. It was a joke, it
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