I wrote a long blog entry this morning then lost it as my connection disconnected. I should know better, as this has happened before. Best to write your blog entry in a word document and afterwards paste it in.
Like this minor stupidity, we too easily forget the dangers of the past unless forcefully reminded again. It's human nature to need a two-by-four on the forehead to get our attention, why Jesus called us “sheep.” Why didn’t he call us pigs? Pigs are smarter and better symbolize our fallen nature. And why not cows? Because sheep are renowned for being dumb, dumb, dumb. How they survived for domestication is a question for previous predators incapable of herding.
I also rattled on about depression, talking about the 10 Kilorat variety where one is reduced to a microscopic dot of pain, self-despite and self-loathing, with an unquenchable thirst for self-annihilation. In that state you are truly better off dead--without others around to remind you of the possibility of a different outcome (in which you cannot believe, they must believe for you). After today’s sonnet I’ll post a poem that comes from a much deeper depression than that with which I am now afflicted.
One does not beat depression, one survives it. If you have any thought in your head about your “triumph” over depression in the past, it is a dangerous illusion. The wolf is always at the door. Don’t mock the Devil, he’s listening. Keep passing the open windows. (I speak only to serious depressives when I say this.)
I always thought it ironic that when I went to AA for a time, it was all about not drinking or taking drugs. When I attended DMDA (Depressive and Manic-Depressive Association) it was all about taking drugs.
But here’s another thing: About 60% of bipolars also have a substance abuse problem. So it’s about taking the right drugs, but this statistic shows that the right drugs are often not enough. And if bipolars use common drugs like alcohol or marijuana to partially ameliorate the pain of depression or the excitation of mania, who can blame them?
Alcohol worked for my father until he was 62; when it quit working he killed himself. He would not or could not face the diagnosis he’d received while hospitalized in the Air Force as a young man. And so it goes. But even more so.
Here’s today’s sonnet, followed by another poem written in deep, deep depression.
You are a mailed fist around my heart.
Metal against flesh; now who will win?
I am forsaken by the healer’s art.
My medications multiply like sin.
It’s only by acceptance I resist;
To struggle is to fall into your trap,
Mistaking us for equals. In the mist
Of madness I would lose you like the clap
But it is not that simple. No infection,
However terrible, could freeze my soul
And sand my skin until there’s no protection
And make a million fractions from the whole.
Through infinite divisions I endure.
You’re not the power that you thought you were.
At 3 Kilorats,
The Usual Suspect