06 Nov A Silent Promise
Dealing with depression can often feel like a death sentence. Your mind and body are the only places you have to live with. When you’re attacking yourself and there is nowhere to run, it can be difficult to find any sort of relief. It’s not one of those feelings where a little bit of distraction can help because it’s always there. Through smiles and laughter, the feeling of emptiness is deep within.
Photography helped me out a great bit with distraction but it was never enough. I will go into modes of elevated energy and throughout the entire day I am zooming around. See, there are two sides to depression. There is the side where you can’t get out of bed, so you don’t. Nothing feels worth getting out of bed and living life. Another side of depression is when you’re trying so hard to be happy and to run away from it that you fill every gap of every second with something. I’ve touched both sides.
Being high functioning with depression is probably the worst.
You look fine. People will often discredit how you’re feeling all because you had a moment of happiness where you maybe hummed to yourself or had a little extra pep in your step. Since it can’t be seen it can’t be real, right?
The Azalea flower has a double meaning. In some ways, it’s known to be very feminine and fragile. The blooms will fall off with a gentle breeze. They look nice and are a very common bush to have around. However, honey from Azalea’s are toxic. Actually, the entire plant is extremely toxic when ingested. Actually, the more I think about it the stranger it is for this plant to be so common.
Something I thought that is really interesting was that in the old Victorian days, these flowers took on a more sinister meaning. If sent in a black vase, the flowers were a symbolism of a threat – a death threat. during this project, I thought that was a perfect fit for how depression feels. It’s like you’re constantly sending yourself death threats, especially depending on the degree of your depression.
I found something so beautiful and odd about that comparison. Not everyone who is depressed is suicidal and not everyone who is depressed will show it. This flower, for me, perfectly embodies the idea of being soft on the outside and toxic on the in. How we can still be kind to others but not kind to ourselves. A big helper in my journey has been for me to be kinder to myself. I am my number one critic and if you need talking to your self negatively, you’ll believe the lies. If you eat the honey, you’ll be poisoned.