In-Between Times

It’s kind of crazy the ease with which we can help or hurt one another, often without even knowing it. Sometimes the simplest of things can cut the deepest. And, likewise, sometimes the tiniest incident can make our day.

Even helping someone, or knowing we did one of those little made-their-day things for someone else, can usually lift our own spirits, as well.

But most of the time, I think it’s the things that hurt which get the most of our attention. Whether someone hurts us, or we hurt someone else, even the little things are tough to leave behind. We carry them with us going forward, if we are able to move forward from them at all. Sticks and stones may break our bones, but it’s the invisible wounds – mental, emotional, spiritual ones – which are difficult to heal. They stick to us, and even if we manage to peel some of one away, there’s still a residue of sorts. A remnant. A tiny fragment which leaves a mark on our soul as it buries itself deep within our psyche.

It holds on and remains alive within us, because on some level, some tiny dark part of ourselves believes it, and feeds it.

Maybe it’s something about our appearance. Or a particular skill we’ve been working to improve. A perception of our intelligence, or our ability to be a good friend. Maybe it’s just whether or not someone loves us. It’s really a multitude of things – tiny disconnects between how we see ourselves, how the rest of the world sees us, and how we think/want the rest of the world to see us. The tricky part is that, the rest of the world is not nearly as important as those select few that we let in enough to know us; those chosen ones with whom we connect on a deeper level. The ones closest to us have the ability to hurt us the most, and yet we have to allow them that ability – as they do for us – in order to be share that closeness with them in the first place.

I do believe that intention is an important factor, as someone hurting you by accident, without knowledge or malice, is entirely different from when someone intends to hurt you. When it’s a deliberate act, it definitely adds another layer, or quality, to the sensation of the person on the receiving end. It’s the ultimate betrayal, the deliberate breaking of trust.

Either way, however, I’m not sure it hurts any less when it’s unintentional. I think it’s just a different kind of hurt.

When someone has hurt you, there are all kinds of solid, logical advice you receive from others, and even give to yourself. Forgive and forget is a popular staple. And forgiveness is completely possible and healthy for all parties involved. It’s the forgetting part that seems less doable. You can hear people tell you positive things all day, every day. You can tell yourself these things while looking in a mirror and reminding yourself to breathe. But the moment even an off-hand comment is made that aligns itself with that darkness within, it feeds the beast, and the memories of every remotely related incident come rushing back to help deepen the wound a tiny bit more. Because dormant memories aren’t gone and forgotten. They are just asleep. You sometimes don’t even realize you still have them until suddenly you’re fighting tears on the way to the washroom where you can cry without being seen.

Sometimes nothing much is required to set it off again. Often it’s just a vague feeling, a sense of something being off, and while you’re trying to sort that out, BLAM! Other things not even similar come flying in to remind you that they haven’t gone anywhere.

It’s all related to self-esteem, really, I think. But I don’t believe anyone has perfect confidence all the time, every moment. Lots of people fake it, some really well, but everyone has known doubt. Everyone has moments where they aren’t sure exactly what their truth really is, versus what they really want it to be.

And you know what’s even crazier? That even those among us who feel the lowest have the ability to – intentionally or not – hurt one of those super-confident-seeming people. Without even knowing we’ve done it, we all have the ability to cut someone deeply. And we do it all the time.

Which, when you’re aware of it, of even the possibility of it, comes with a boatload of guilt, and that also feeds the beast inside. What kind of person are you if you go around hurting other people the way people hurt you? What if you hurt them even more than you’ve been hurt? You can apologize, you can make amends, but now you’ve caused another being irrevokeable harm, and you can’t take it back. Not all of it. Some of it has attached itself and become another part of their inner darkness. Something you said or did – or didn’t say, or didn’t do – has become a part of the pain they carry every day, just as you carry yours.

Once in awhile I play those moments when I know I’ve hurt someone over and over in my head, and I let myself feel that guilt and shame all over again before I put it back to sleep. I know I only recognize a tiny percentage of the incidents, too, which makes it worse, in a way. But I let myself feel as much as I can, anyway, because in my mind, it makes me a better person than if I felt no regret at all.

That’s the thing, really. It all lives in our minds. We can’t stop from being hurt by others, nor can we stop hurting them ourselves, but we can control how we handle it; how we hold it. We can recognize that it’s there, and own it. We know the beast will get fed by others, and we know we’ll feed the beasts of others, too. But we can make a conscious decision to not feed our own, and to not do any of it deliberately.

Will we still hurt and be hurt? Absolutely. And it’ll still suck. But the darkness will always retreat back into its corner, and the beast will always fall back to sleep for the times in between.

And during those in-between times, we will laugh and love, until we hurt again. For the sum total of it all is what it is to really live.

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Bikes and Forts

It’s nice outside today, so I went for a long-ish walk with Mr Brodykins.  Along the way, we passed a small dead-end, cul-de-sac street where upon children played on a tire swing and had a game of street hockey on the go.  I almost paused to take a photo, as if capturing someone else’s moment would somehow preserve it in time and make it mine.

I have plenty of my own moments, however, so we carried on our way.  It did manage to conjur up my memories of some of those similar childhood antics, though.

I think, even though we also played street hockey and had swings, with us it was more bikes and forts.  It was small town Ontario in the 70’s and early 80’s, and we didn’t even lock our doors for at least part of that.  We went out to play, the whole village was our playground, and the main rule was that we had to be home before the streetlights came on.  Which we failed at on a regular basis, arguing that there was no way to know WHEN the lights would come on, so how could we know when to start heading home?

Um…because it was starting to get dark?

Anyway.

We were always out on our bikes.  And when we weren’t physically riding, there were no locks or bike racks.  We just tipped them over and left them by the side of the road until we needed them again.  En masse, usually.  That’s how we knew where to find one another.

Ramps were a big thing, too.  Anything from an uneven sidewalk to a plank leaning on a stack of newspapers would service as a means to a jump.  We destroyed so much stuff, yet still survived to tell the tale.  Remarkably, looking back on it now.

Someone not me had a Green Machine.  I’m still kind of jealous of that.

Anything could serve as a fort, too.  Blankets, of course, or a section flattened out of long grass or lilac bushes, a platform in a tree.  Playing indoors, we even used books opened and standing in a ‘v’ and lined up to create rooms and the like.  Sometimes less creative areas served as forts, as well.  Like the old ice cream trailer thingy.  Until the police got involved, of course.

Anyway.

For a while, a group of us created our own version of The A-Team.  Except without the helping people thing.  I was the only girl, so of course I was Hannibal.  The minister’s son got to be Amy.  We set up a bank account that eventually closed with something like $0.14 or something in it.  We’d had a bit more in it, but we’d decided to build a wee fire and have hot dogs.

We were pretty hardcore.

Meeting Juno

Happy International Polar Bear Day!

I really only have about 15 minutes to write before I have to get ready to go out for the night, but since I was, of course, at the zoo today, I’ll write a bit about that – while munching on some Ketchup Doritos.

So, I got there late, but all was wel, in the end.  I headed over to the Tundra Trek with the hope of catching a glimpse of young Miss Juno, our new baby polar bear cub.  She was born on Remembrance Day 2015, and what initially started as the keepers’ nickname for her eventually stuck.  She is named for Juno Beach, in honour of the Canadian Forces landing point on D-Day in WWII.  She’s also been adopted by the Candian Armed Forces now, and given the rank of Private!

Since it’s Polar Bear Day, and her first day for the public to see her, AND the weather was nice, I knew I wouldn’t get much of a chance to see her, but I wanted to at least get in there and maybe make some eye contact.  Tell her she may as well get used to me. That sort of thing.

The line was huge, but moving, and I stood in it for a couple of minutes, but then decided to go get a good spot for the Keeper Talk with the adults instead, then see Juno after.

Good call!

As expected, sisters Aurora and Nikita were up front, napping in the sun together, while Inukshuk paced in the background, knowing lunch was near.  At one point, the Keeper came out a few minutes early, so it was on!  The girls were up, Inukshuk was alert – Nikita even stood on her hind legs to a frighteningly impressive height to get a better look!  Aurora decided to get in the pool to eat her lunch, while Nikita stayed semi-dry up on the rocks.  They all have such personalities – I just love those bears.  Aurora does this thing where she runs one paw down the side of her face and neck – almost as if she has long hair that she’s brushing back with her fingers.  I melt every time.

Aw hell – it’s already time for me to get ready!  I’ll make this fast!

I got back in a much shorter line to see Juno, and while I glimpsed her sticking her head outside (took some blurry pics – damn fence!), she seemed mostly content to stay in her indoor nursery area, so I waited in line a little longer and we got inside.

I’d spotted my friend Steve who was working as a volunteer, letting visitors know all about Juno as they arrived.  I mostly let him do his thing, because I knew we’d catch up once I’d gone through the line.  By the time I got up to the indoor window, though, baby girl was fast asleep.  She was, however, right up against the window, so I hoped that I’d snap a couple of quick good shots of her sweet sleepy self before she rolled over or moved.

I got to the front, took some pics on my camera, then knelt down in front of her to snap a couple on my phone, because she is too adorable not to Instagram!

I took one, then as I too kind a second, her eyes started to open.  By the time I took he third, she’d looked right at me!

What?!

I missed the shot by a beat because I think I’d stopped breathing for a second, but we had a quick little moment there, and that was all I’d really needed.

Hudson (her big brother) used to do that, too.  I was convinced that he could somehow sense when I was there, and wouldappear over the hill, or wake up and come over.  He always seemed to know.  Even the last time I saw him, he was asleep, and I stood across the pool and just looked at him, taking a few final photos as well.  Within moments, he went from passed out cold, to opening his eyes long enough to look at me and blink, then closed them again and went back to sleep.

It was the perfect goodbye, and I look forward to having many more such moments with his beautiful little baby sister for however long I get to go visit her!

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Hands Of Time

I have a thing for hands.

For as long as I can remember, really, as I’m pretty sure it existed even before I noticed it, this affinity for the look and shape of hands.

To my mind, you can tell a lot about a person by their hands. Not specifics, like their favourite colour, or their childhood pet’s name. It’s more of a vague sense of who a person is on the inside; a glimpse into their identity. Our hands grow and change as we do, and while much attention is focused on superficial matters like wrinkles, or gray hairs, there is somehow a kind of personality that resides in hands. They just speak a simple, basic truth – in the way they look, the way they move, the way they touch and the way they feel. They are both an internal and external extension of who we are as individuals.

Much of our public identity can be determined by hands. Fingerprints are unique to every individual human being on the planet, and handwriting analysis has been around for decades, if not longer. On the surface, these things are usually indicators of a person’s name. Beyond that, though, I believe there is much more to be gleaned about an individual’s identity from their hands and handwriting.

I remember watching an episode of Another World, back in the day, and there was a scene with a woman teaching a younger woman how to bake a pie, or something. She insisted that the girl do all of the steps herself, so that her “hands would remember how”. That one sentence struck me with such force of truth that it has stayed with me to this day. I think it was my first understanding of body memories, though I had no idea at the time. Even then, though, I knew that the act of doing something oneself was a far greater teacher than watching someone else do it, and trying to remember the steps later on. Our bodies are capable of storing information that our minds can not. Or, perhaps, our minds are inundated with so much each waking moment that it becomes easier and more accurate to access body memories in some cases, because our brains are working at a different, busier level. Even individual cells have memories, after all, so is it really any wonder that our ability to recollect thoughts, feelings, sensations, and events come from all over our bodies, instead of just that one organ parked upstairs?

Years ago, two things happened relatively close together that got me thinking about hands some more, and in a more specific way. I think that’s around the time that I started to realize my affinity for hands, and to notice things about them on a more regular basis. One was that, when going through some boxes of old school things, I came across a page of something my brother had done in Kindergarten or so. It had been printed on coloured paper, from a ditto machine (remember those delightful-smelling things?!) and there was a boxed-off section wherein he’d been asked to trace one of his hands. Maybe both, actually. I forget.

Anyway, there was a perfect outline – in crayon – of his pudgy little baby boy hand(s) on this sheet of paper, and just looking at it transported me back to a time when he was that wee and adorable. I could almost see him in my mind, the memory of him perfectly captured and preserved in that one (or two) little crayon outline of his hand. It was so powerful I had to, of course, take it to show my mom immediately.

The other thing was an episode of a TV show….or a movie…I don’t even remember what it was, or who was in it, or what was going on. I think there were two friends, both teenaged girls, and one was maybe moving away, or something? But one girl made the other girl trace her hand into her journal – they may have even swapped and traced their hands into each other’s journals – so that no matter where they were, a part of them would always be together. I remember tracing my own hand into my journal and, a page later, my kitty cat, Kate, stood on a page while I was trying to write, so I traced her little gray paw into it, as well. To most, I’m sure it looks like a squiggle on a page, but to me – it’s like I can still see her there, in that outline of her paw. It feels as though part of her is still with me whenever I look at it.

An ex and I had gotten our claspsed hands molded in wax at some point. Right before we broke up, the wax began to melt and we ended up throwing the piece of crap away, along with our relationship. Haha

Lesson learned.

The next time I would mold my hand with another’s would be with someone I’ve loved much more and for much longer than the wax person, and we did it in plaster this time. It’s surviving temperature changes just fine, over a year later and counting!

I love to create things with my hands. I still wash dishes by hand. I often carry a stone or crystal in my pocket to hold or fidget with whenever I feel the need. It’s comforting to me; grounding. I like textures, and usually find an excuse to make contact with the ones I am drawn to – the bark of a tree, leaf of a plant or flower, anything that looks shiny or soft. haha When sitting on a beach I love the feeling of pushing my hands into the warm sand and feeling its coolness underneath. There is a connection there, a tangible sense of oneness with the earth itself.

I used to have pen pals all over the world, and I have boxes still in my apartment of the letters I received, along with cards and notes from family and friends. There is something more – intimate, and personal – in a handwritten note than in any typed text or email. Now, my penmanship has always been ass, but at the same time, it’s changed very little over the course of my life. I’ve been printing since Grade 8 by choice, but still know mostly how to write in cursive. It’s just much harder to read. Not that my printing is much easier. But anyway. I dated someone once who would, looking back, be remembered as probably the best and healthiest relationship I’ve ever had. For my birthday one year I was given a framed photograph – taken and developed – by that person, and a hand-written card. It was the card that made me tear up, because I realized that it was the first time I’d seen her handwriting. Somehow that made me feel like we were even closer.

Such a little thing. Handwriting. And yet, so much of a person can be seen in it.

I wonder if all this technology and interwebs and cellular service is actually doing more damage than good, in terms of bringing people closer together. I don’t remember the last time I sent a handwritten card or letter to someone…probably the crappy handmade Valentine card I sent to Colorado one year. 😉

I find I still take pen to paper when I am planning something, or writing to sort something out, or what have you. I have several of those old school composition books at home, and at least one more notebook on the go currently. My Guinness World Record attempt and resulting follow-up projects are all contained in one such composition book, as well. All written by my messy – but very me – hand.

I feel like we might be losing something in our insistence upon typing everything now. I think we might be losing some connection, and replacing it with something more surface-level. Something slightly cold and indifferent. You can often see my mood in my handwriting, and yet in typed form, that too is lost. It falls more to the reader to decipher, and that’s where so many misinterpretations begin.

And what if, in addition to losing a bit of connection with the world around us and the other people in it, we are also losing some of our body memories? What if fingertips on keyboards and touchscreens actually retain less than a piece of paper marked by pen, pencil, or a 5-year-old boy’s crayon?

What if we are actually losing a little piece of ourselves, as well?

Time To Run

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Tonight, Tim and I welcome back the subject of our very first real interview, director/writer Jeremy Lalonde! Our friendship with this incredibly talented and funny guy began after we caught the opening night screening of his first feature film, The Untitled Work Of Paul Sheppard. We’d originally gone as a show of support for a couple of the cast members, but by the time we left, we were both quite in love with the film itself. Tim wrote a glowing review, then contacted the director to see if he would be interested in speaking with us for our podcast. It felt like a Hail Mary at the time, but Jeremy responded with an enthusiastic yes, and before we knew it, we were sitting down with him in a pub and sharing laughs over a couple of pints. I’d say the rest is history, but in fact I think we’re all still writing our histories as we go, so I am super excited to embark on this next chapter with Jer, and see what all he’s got on his plate now!

This episode will mark our second time in the studio this week, as well as our second time in the studio this year. Which is…kind of sad, really. We have periods of frustration every once in awhile, and this is one of those times. We recorded our final episode of 2015 back in December, and it’s still not posted yet – and it’s awesome, so I really hope you guys get to see it! The Mind Reels welcomes Robin Dunne, whom we’d met in the home stretch of our Guinness World Record attempt! It was even more amazing to have him in the studio once we were more awake!

And there are guests we hope to have coming up very soon, but I’m finding it difficult to invite anyone to come in when I have no idea how long it will be before their episode goes up. It’s like we keep taking a step forward – and then a couple back. We just can’t seem to really get going. My level of frustration merely increases with the addition of several ideas that I want to implement, but when we can’t even seem to get a basic foundation going, it’s hard to see any way to build on that.

I feel much the same way about really all of the projects – and ideas for projects – that I have on the go these days. I can’t get anything flowing, it seems. In fact, there are so many now that I can’t even get started, let alone flowing along, that it’s actually kind of depressing sometimes! It’s still really exciting, though, so for the most part, it’s just the frustration that gets to me. I want to run, yet we can barely walk.

The other thing, too, of course, is that it’s all really more than enough for a full time job, if it’s done properly. Merely lining up guests and shooting episodes is just the basics. A lot of work has to go into marketing, and researching and pounding the pavement to keep growing the show and the entire Smithee.TV channel. We have the basics – a social media presence on several platforms, a physical studio to work out of, we even have our own app – but we lack consistency. In programming, in advertising, in finding sponsors, and in remaining a presence online. We need to do all the legwork, and do it all the time. So far it’s all been sporadic at best.

We need to really get known with conventions in the area so that we either have a booth where we can conduct live interviews with the guests on site, and/or get in there moderating celebrity panels more often. We need regular sponsors looking to advertise on the channel. We need the equipment to work properly, and we need to post content on a regular, at least once a day, basis. We also need to promote that content over the course of each day, more than once, so that it turns up in people’s feeds on a regular and consistent basis. We need to be more mobile and have the ability to conduct interviews and shoot episodes on-the-go. We need more new content, and different types of content, to build on top of what we already have on the go.

We need to really pull together and get this team off the ground. Right now we’re just bouncing around a bit, like a balloon that’s losing its helium.

We also need more volunteers to do the off-camera work – switching camera angles and monitoring the sound quality while a show is filming, getting the episodes ready to post, and uploading them to YouTube and iTunes, including proper tags and the like. We need people – everyone, really – promoting the shows online via Twitter, Facebook, etc, all the time, and tagging everything so it turns up in search engines. We need to get people talking, watching, and listening, and then keep them tuning in as we grow. We need to build a real audience, then maintain it, and grow it from there.

All of these things take time, and since we all have full time jobs keeping us busy as it is, it’s pretty much impossible to devote the kind of time required to do all of these things properly.

But I believe it can be done.

Maybe we just need some kind of schedule, wherein everyone gets a bit of the task list to do on certain days and/or times. If we get a few more volunteers to help with some of it, and maybe write up a couple of templates to make some of the written tasks faster and easier (Tim and I have a basic pitch letter that we send to agents and the like when we’re looking into getting new guests – it’s pretty much copy/paste and fill in the blanks), then most of those things would be a 5-10 minute time commitment, instead of longer. They could happen much more regularly, too, which would help boost our presence.

So many quick little things can make all the difference, but we really need to hammer out a basic foundation for the show and the channel first and foremost. Until we can say with at least some certainty that an episode will be up within a specified timeframe, complete with credits, tags and any other pertinent information required by the guest, we’re kind of just treading water. We need to know when we can go live consistently, too, and promote the crap outta that before even beginning to shoot the episode.

We need a plan. We need to be consistent with its implementation. And then we need to market and promote and shout it from the rooftops. Every day. More than once.

I believe it can be done. I believe we can rise up and be amazing.

I believe it’s time to take the first step – and then keep stepping.

I believe – with a little more work on everyone’s part – it can soon be time to run.

Know What’s Crazy? ‘Cause I Don’t…

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So, I stumbled across this list on Tumblr a couple of weeks ago, and it’s still kind of on my mind. It consists of reasons why someone would be admitted to an insane asylum – in the late 1800’s.

First, insane asylums are creepy as all heck to me. Especially old school ones, but really, no matter what name you give them, they are filled with unpredictability. And that is one thing that bothers me most. I mean, a lot of things get under my skin, but that is a huge one. I still occasionally check under my bed to ensure the psycho killer isn’t waiting for me to feel safe enough to sleep before he stabs me, or whatever. It’s the feeling that everything is fine until it isn’t – the sense that anything could happen at any time and for NO DISCERNABLE REASON. Like, the sane (or sane-ish) can’t predict what the insane will do at any given moment, because even they don’t know until they do it.

Also, asylums are scary and full of ghosts, especially after they’ve been abandonned. Not to mention all the tools. What the hell are doctors and scientists thinking sometimes?

I think part of it is also – like, I’m pretty sure even a sane person, under similar circumstances, would begin to exhibit insane-like behaviour after awhile. In many cases, even now, prison would be better. It’s called an asylum, but it’s not really to keep the sick safe from society. It’s to protect society from the sick. For so many, there’s no coming back from that. And I feel like even for the “sane-est” person alive, trying to prove you’re NOT insane would be like trying to prove you’re not drunk. Evidence can be found to prove the case against you quite easily once someone is looking for it, and from that point on, the frustration at not being able to prove your truth to the world – that you are sane and/or sober – that alone would begin to make matters much, much worse.

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Now, I of course know that things are very different now than they were in the 1800’s. We have made incredible advances in the mental health field along with everything else. Looking at this list is almost laughable, really. Like, WTF does “time of life” even mean? It’s your time to be a lunatic? Fell from horse in war is a reason for admission? What if you fell from a horse at home, and not anywhere near the war?

I’m not even going to get into the sexist, ignorant reasons, because as you can see, they make up the majority of the list. I wonder how many of these were acted upon by a person checking themselves in, versus being checked in against their will. I wonder how many were women or gay or not-white.

Novel reading?! Seriously?!

Funny how priorities change. Back then they seem to have been obsessed with masturbation, the expression of any emotion (grief is on there), and anything possibly related to a fever and/or the imagination.

To my eyes, all of those reasons seem insane in and of themselves.

Possibly because I would have been locked up for several of them, myself.

Sometimes I actually have to wonder how far we’ve really come. Attitudes and stigma surrounding mental health are still – I mean, I feel like they’ve been getting a bit better in recent years, but I almost feel like it’s going too far in the other direction. We’ve gone from having no real understanding of most mental health issues and not really talking about it in any kind of meaningful discourse, to still having no real understanding, yet talking about it all the time. Just on the surface, though. Everyone jumps on the #BellLetsTalk bandwagon one day a year, which is great, but it doesn’t seem like very many people actually talk. We’re all very good at nodding in sympathy and telling people to just talk about whattever’s bothering them, that we’re here to listen.

I just don’t think many of us know how to really talk about it. Because none of us really understand any of it.

On a logic level, we can grasp that being sad and being depressed are not the same thing. But sometimes it looks the same. And sometimes it looks completely different. Sometimes it doesn’t look a thing like what we think depression should look like, and so we might not even notice.

Even when it’s happening to you.

That sense of not being able to understand your own self, of not knowing why you do some of the things you do – it can feel very disconnecting. And so we bury it, because we don’t want anyone else to see us becoming more disconnected and risk having them think we’re a freak.

Or insane.

Because once someone has that thought about you, it’s very difficult – if not impossible – to get them to see you any other way.

We all want to be normal, yet unique and special. And the definition of normal has never been anything but a slippery slope. Whoever invented the concept of normal should be put in an asylum, were they still alive, because that concept is completely crazy. We want to stand out as individuals, but for good things. Inspiring or heroic things. Not for telling squirrels to be careful when they cross the street when you’re on your way to work in the morning.

Hypothetically speaking, of course.

So as much as we all want to talk about our thoughts and feelings, and let our freak flags fly, we’re also terrified that it’ll reveal too much, and that there will be no coming back from that. Once we are too real, and too exposed, we’re doomed. It feels like it could actually drive people further away, especially since we have no idea why we think and feel some of the things we think and feel. We can’t explain it because we don’t understand it ourselves.  Human beings have a need to dissect and understand everything – we’ve been testing theories and hypotheses since we crawled out of the primordial ooze.  But I think mental health is perhaps the one true bane of our existence, because it’s not something that can be quantified or studied with any degree of accuracy.  It not only changes from person to person, but also within the same person, from moment to moment and day to day.  It’s unpredictable, and that’s what makes it scary.

Like, maybe we have a great life – not just appear to have – actually have everything that should make us happy. A spouse, children, pets, job satisfaction, comfortable salary, a boatload of friends, an in-home theatre, a cottage in Greece, sunshine, rainbows and a unicorn. From the outside, we have everything. From our own perspective, we want for nothing. Yet for no discernable reason, we feel unhappy. How can one who has so much to make them feel complete still have a sense of disconnect and actually suffer from depression? How do you fight something when you have no idea what it is, why it is, or what might actually help make it go away? How do you live with it? And how on earth would you ever, ever tell anyone about it? What would they think? How would they react? Is it worth the risk of potentially making it even more difficult to get through the day, if the conversation goes south?

Often times, no, it is not.

And so we remain silent, for better or for worse, and wait for the next storm to pass.

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