Friday, March 26, 2010

now's a bad a time as any

Wednesday night I saw Imogen Heap play at Billboard, and she was extraordinary. Musicians who have mastered instruments to the point of becoming artists are always impressive, but she has branched out to master live mixing and looping, making music from the most unusual of found sounds, and to watch her create a thickly-layered and wildly-varying song on her own before a live audience was awe-inspiring. I have loved her music since first discovering her, and now love her even more. Anyone checking can see I've been spamming her on

(Enjoyment of 'Hide and Seek' somewhat hindered by the girl behind me singing enthusiastically (you win points!) and so appallingly out of tune (YOU LOSE POINTS!) I had to exert will power to restrain myself from turning to shhhh her.)

'Speeding Cars' is one of the greatest songs about depression you will find. I can't listen to it without clenching my whole existence, it teases the tear ducts and closes my throat even as it soothes the heart. She performed it, and a bar full of drunks sang along, and I was glad the place was dark.

Today I attended a Beyond Blue seminar held through work, which looks at raising awareness regarding mental illness and equipping people with strategies to deal with it in the workplace. I've been wanting to attend one of these for a while, just to see exactly what is being taught and what attitudes are being brought to them. This particular one was tailored to sworn members in managerial roles, neither of which I am, but it certainly was interesting.

Loss of identity came up as a contributing factor for depression an anxiety, which I've tangled with far too recently. When discussing depression and anxiety and the circumstances that can trigger them, this is rarely something that pops up, yet now strikes me as perhaps one of the factors with most cause for concern. To lose a sense of who you are casts you adrift without anchor not only in the present, but renders your future vast and unknown, and your past invalid. You lose you, and if you lose you, then what are you fighting for?

Why fight to keep your head above water at all?

It was an exceptionally good session, and I hope it really does make a difference out there. I know, I'm all for pushing others to seek help while refusing to do so myself, and I'm a hypocrite. I'm a self-managing hypocrite.

Despite being really good right now, it was still a confronting day.

They passed a book around that detailed the various remedies for treating depression. The results regarding the effectiveness of chocolate were inconclusive. I ate a bar anyway.


  1. Tessa - I want to give you a hug so much right now. You have really nailed that loss of identity right on the head. It can be crippling. It certainly was for me. Instead of being in a position to try and address chronic clinical depression, I was left adrift and ultimately lost everything. Some years later I am only now starting to reclaim things. My scum-sucking former employer is to blame for ever so much of it. I probably shouldn't name them but lets just say that I will not be co-operating with the next Census.

    I'm so glad to hear that the Beyond Blue program is proving to have real value. As for chocolate, if it makes you feel better, then eat another bar. Or two.

  2. I lost my identity briefly but your word verification reminded me. My name is blonesin.


    I remember who you are. I do.

  3. There will always be people who just don't give a shit, Ross, and even those who deliberately mean harm. What's to be done with them is...obvious, but rarely done. Educating people who simply don't understand can make all the world of difference though.

    Blonesin! My friend! You have returned!