CPC Report; An unabashedly liberal perspective

31 October 2009  (Halloween)

 

I Shall Now Take My Leave For Now

To my dozen or so readers, assuming I'm that lucky, I feel compelled to explain a months absence from my website. Using IE6, which is becoming obsolete, would no longer support my web site. It took a month to come up a way around this problem. Before I lost access, I had made numerous corrections for spelling errors, which subsequently were not saved. (When I am typing, I get rather sloppy with my writing.) Also two articles were left unfinished. All of these problems have been corrected. And now with great irony, I am withdrawing from my website, which is basically a failure anyway.

For reasons of my own making, I have to move out of the house I am renting. My current life is rather chaotic and I am at this time overwhelmed by severe clinical depression, a mental illness in which I possess. That is the way things are. Therefore, I am calling it quits, at least for now. It is doubtful that I will take up this endeavor again. For now at least, my depression is extremely overwhelming. But maybe I'll take it up again at the end of this month.

 

Notes on Depression

"Gradually, then suddenly."* That describes the onset of an episode of depression. It hits you hard. It is overwhelming. It digs deeply into the core of your being and makes itself at home there at its pleasure. And you hurt. The pain is overwhelmingly unbearable. You just want the pain to go away. But the pain will not leave. It stays. It has already established itself as a permanent resident within you.

The strangest thing about this is you hurt and you do not know why. It is quite the mystery And God help those closest to you, for they are potential targets for a rage, born out of your pain and transfered from yourself outward. This hostility springs forth from the pain that you feel, but do not understand. You just want to die. You are haunted by these lyrics from the M.A.S.H. theme song- "Suicide is painless. It brings on many changes. And I can take or leave it if I please."

So, what do you do? Kill yourself? Or seek an escape from it? You can do the latter by either physically isolating yourself from your environment, thus becoming a hermit, or retreat into the realm of sex, alcohol or drugs. But the whatever refuge you choose is just an illusion. The world is still there from which no escape is possible outside of suicide and suicide is really difficult to do, unless you are properly motivated. Perhaps you need the drugs or alcohol to ease into it by disposing the inhibitions that hold you back. However for what it is worth, I have never used such inhibition destroyers in order to escape into a mirage. A more healthy escape is sleep.

According to Merriam Webster's Collegiate Dictionary (11th ed.), depression is defined as being “a psychoneurotic or psychotic disorder marked by sadness, inactivity, difficulty in thinking and concentration, a significant increase or decrease in appetite and time spent sleeping, feelings of dejection and hopelessness and sometimes suicidal tendencies. After reading this, my first thought was, “How depressing.”I then realized that it was an completely accurate description of yourself

The same dictionary also defines depression as a state of sadness and dejection, leading to semantical confusion between between the two meanings. But just being sad and dejected does not make one clinically depressed. This simple depression is temporary in duration and not a mental illness. The clinical kind is a mental illness and more permanent in duration.

Many people when confronted with the concept of depression inevitably think of the simple form and ask, “What are you depressed about?” Next you are labeled lazy. “Take resposibility for life”, they shout. You scream, “You do not know me!” Then you hear only echoes of your voice and realize that you are really alone. Your tormentors are not there anymore. They have departed and there is nobody there to hear you. The echoes? They merely become quieter and then evaporates into oblivion. You wish that you could follow them there.

Your life is a dream threatening to become a nightmare. For example; You are laying in bed. At the foot of your bed is a demon silhouetted by the outside light coming through the window behind him. What really stands out are those eyes; those eyes glowing with great intensity while changing from yellow to orange to red. These are the colors of a fiery hell. Then you awaken and the demon is gone.

You walk into the bathroom to splash water on your face, but once inside you find yourself in a long, dark hall instead, which is oppresively quite. The hall seems to go on forever, devoid of any doors and windows; devoid of any exit. You then realize that you are still sleeping. Your awakening did not really happen after all. “Wake up.”, you say to yourself. “Wake up.” And so you do, or so you think you do. Back into the bathroom you go and once again you find yourself in that same long, dark hall again. You only thought you woke up. Then you hear the demon whisper into your ear, “Escape is futile.” You turn around, but he is gone. Yet, you know he is still there, unseen.

Sometimes a episode of clinical depression might be brought on by a known cause. But, even when the cause is disposed of and therefore dealt with, a generalized underlying depressive mood always remains unresolved, with the cause remaining undefinable. Its cause has been attributed to a chemical imbalance within the brain's circuitry and cobwebs. The solution is anti depressive medications such as prozac or zoloft. Must be better living through chemistry. But drugs seem only to dull the pain, softening its intensity and making it more bearable. Never do the drugs expel, exile, extinguish or exorcise that pain, at least that is how it is for this writer.

One who has clinical depression has a fog which clouds ones mind and restricts ones vision. This makes difficult the mental processes to focus upon ones environment and the ability to relate to it as well. One also tends to be disassociated from those in ones life, including from those who are the most closest to oneself. Like a fog which obscures ones vision, one is mentally blind to what is really important in life.

Clinical depression taxes one not only mentally, but also physically and renders one rather lethargic. Getting motivated in the mere pursuit of living becomes quite the challenge. Pursuing ones goals becomes difficult. Fulfilling ones obligations becomes problematic. Even getting up in the morning may be quite a task. Getting through the day involves the continual motivation of oneself and like a wind-up toy, requires a constant rewinding.





Clinical depression is like being under stress 24 hours a day and 7 days a week. One's muscles are tense as if ready for a fight with or flight from a foe which is intangible, but not imaginary. The pain within oneself is a demon which will be always ready for a fight, but will forbid any escape.

Episodes of clinical depression are like a demon attacking ones existence and being unsatisfied, returning whimsically at his pleasure. At times one seems to be standing on the brink of the precipice, staring down into the abyss, watching him come at oneself, on the verge of engulfing oneself and forcing one to descend into that chasm which is unfathomable; into that pit which is bottomless; into hell.

Depression is a portable hell. It goes wherever one goes. It is there when one gets up in the morning, travels with one throughout the day and is there when one retires to bed at night. Depression is forever.

*Prozac Nation, Elizabeth Wurtzel a quote from Ernest Hemingway's The Sun Also Rises, although in a slightly different context.


* Prozac Nation, Elizabeth Wurtzel
**For the record, drugs and alcohol were never my thing.

  
                                 

"Suicide is painless" by Mike Altman and Johnny Mandel

Through early morning fog I see

The visions of the things to be,

The pains that are withheld for me,

I realize and I can see...

'Cause suicide is painless

It brings on many changes,

And I can take or leave it if I please.

 

I try to find a way to make

All our little joys relate

Without that ever-present hate

But now I know that it's too late,                                   'Cause suicide is painless.

It brings on many changes,

And I can take or leave it if I please.

 

The game of life is hard to play,

I'm going to loose it anyway,

The losin' card I'll someday lay;

So this is all I have to say

'Cause suicide is painless

It brings on many changes,

And I can take or leave if I please.


The only way to win is cheat

And lay it down before I'm beat

And to another give my seat

For that's the only painless feat.

'Cause suicide is painless

It brings on many changes,

And I can take or leave it if I please.

 

The sword of time will pierce our skins,

It doesn't hurt when it begins,

But as it works its way on in

The pain grows stronger...watch and grin,

'Cause suicide is painless

It brings on many changes,

And I can take or leave it if I please.


A wise man once requested me

To answer questions that are key

"Is it to be or not to be"

And I reply, "oh why ask me",

'Cause suicide is painless

It brings on many changes,

And I can take or leave it if I please.

...and you can do the same thing if you choose.

                   
       

 Do Not Go Gentle into That Good Night,

by Dylan Thomas

Do not go gentle into that good night,
Old age should burn and rave at close of day;
Rage, rage against the dying of the light.

Though wise men at their end know dark is right,
Because their words had forked no lightning they
Do not go gentle into that good night.

Good men, the last wave by, crying how bright
Their frail deeds might have danced in a green bay,
Rage, rage against the dying of the light.

Wild men who caught and sang the sun in flight,
And learn, too late, they grieved it on its way,
Do not go gentle into that good night.

Grave men, near death, who see with blinding sight
Blind eyes could blaze like meteors and be gay,   
Rage, rage against the dying of the light.

And you, my father, there on the sad height,
Curse, bless, me now with your fierce tears, I pray,
Do not go gentle into that good night.
Rage, rage against the dying of the light.

 

"Hope" is the thing with feathers 

                      "Hope" is the thing with feathers—

That perches in the soul—
And sings the tune without the words—
And never stops—at all—

And sweetest—in the Gale—is heard—
And sore must be the storm—
That could abash the little Bird
That kept so many warm—

I've heard it in the chillest land—
And on the strangest Sea—
Yet, never, in Extremity,

It asked a crumb—of Me.

                             

"Good morning heartache", written by Irene Higgenbotham, Ervin Drake and Dan Fisher & first sung by Billie Holiday

Good morning heartache, you old gloomy sight
Good morning heartache
Thought we said goodbye last night
I turned and tossed until it seemed that you had gone
But here you are with the dawn
Wish I'd forget you, but you're here to stay
It seems I met ya, when my love went away
Now each day I start by saying to you
Good morning heartache, what's new
Stop haunting me now, can't shake you no how
Just leave me alone
I've got those Monday blues
Straight through Sunday blues
Good morning heartache, here we go away
Good morning heartache
You're the one who knew me when
Might as well get used to you hanging around
Good morning heartache, sit down.


If
 by Rudyard Kipling 


 
 
      ?          ?           ? 
                ?      ? 

    ?             ?                    ?           ?     
?      ?        ?    ?             ?        ?  
      ?          
?
                     ?  
       
 ?   

  What if ?
If you can keep your head when all about you
Are losing theirs and blaming it on you;
If you can trust yourself when all men doubt you,
But make allowance for their doubting
too:
If you can wait and not be tired by waiting,
Or, being lied about, don't deal in lies,
Or being hated don't give way to hating,
And yet don't look too good, nor talk too wise;

If you can dream---and not make dreams your master;
If you can think---and not make thoughts your aim,
If you can meet with Triumph and Disaster
And treat those two impostors just the same:.
If you can bear to hear the truth you've spoken
Twisted by knaves to make a trap for fools,
Or watch the things you gave your life to, broken,
And stoop and build'em up with worn-out tools;

If you can make one heap of all your winnings
And risk it on one turn of pitch-and-toss,
And lose, and start again at your beginnings,
And never breathe a word about your loss:
If you can force your heart and nerve and sinew
To serve your turn long after they are gone,
And so hold on when there is nothing in you
Except the Will which says to them: "Hold on!"

If you can talk with crowds and keep your virtue,
Or walk with Kings---nor lose the common touch,
If neither foes nor loving friends can hurt you,
If all men count with you, but none too much:
If you can fill the unforgiving minute
With sixty seconds' worth of distance run,
Yours is the Earth and everything that's in it,
And---which is more---you'll be a Man, my son! 

 



 Postscript
Insofar as health care reform is concerned, one should remember the golden rule- He who has the gold, makes the rules.

And that's just the way it is.



                      Glynn  Braman

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