This Thing of Darkness I Acknowledge Mine.

After a longer than usual break from blogging, I thought I might return with a little update on my turbulent, once troubled, mind. It seems that I somewhat lost my motivation to blog over the closing months of the last year, even missing my usual Christmas message. I don't know what this was really down to, but suffice it to say that some of the wind seemed to have left my sails. I seem to have tried to find my way in the 3-D world, with some success in the voluntary sector of work, but none in the paid variety, so perhaps it was that that was causing my little flutter of anxiety. Add to that that the mental health charity I'd worked for closed its doors back in late 2012, and also that I'd had to come to terms with being discharged from secondary mental health services after 16 years under their care, and perhaps you have a recipe for, if not a slough of despond, then certainly a little glimpse into the darkness.
Indeed, I don't know what it is, but I do seem to have a certain fondness for existential despair. I tend to have thoughts that many would describe as very depressing. I think about Albert Camus, who said that the fact of death makes life absurd. I think about stories that my mum and dad tell me about their friends who have died, and indeed, met their end in such seemingly undignified ways that one begins to wonder what the point of it all is. For instance, I think about the story my mum told me of one friend of hers who had gone into hospital to be treated for swelling of the legs, only to be ushered to the toilet one day by only one nurse because there was a lack of staff on the ward, and because of this fell off the toilet only to get a blood clot on the brain from which he later died. Such things, to my mind anyway, show the absurdity of our existence, and perhaps even give us the opportunity for a little black, gallows humour.
So, having such thoughts, I begin to wonder about myself. Am I really a little depressed? Some of my experience would seem to point to this - the lack of motivation, the morbid thinking. But then again, I look back at my life and perhaps think that this aspect has always been there. Of course it's alleviated by the looks, the sounds, the smells of life, but maybe there's always that counterbalance, an inter-related and persistent knowledge - we may be alive, but one day we won't be.
So for now, I suppose, I'll just have to get used to such thoughts. Through my mental illness, I certainly took a step towards the darkness. I thought, and as no doubt I've related in this blog, that I'd taken a step towards the light. But now, as in the pure light of day I begin to examine my soul once again and as if anew, I find that perhaps the darkness was always there. Perhaps this thing of darkness I have to acknowledge mine.              


bazza said…
Hello David, it's good to hear from you again - if perhaps a little alarming!
I suppose that to embrace one's existential angst is one way of dealing with it.
Don't forget that Camus once said that to live properly one must not search for the meaning of life (or something like that).....
I can certainly detect some positive thoughts emerging from this post; a way of living perhaps?
Best regards to you David.
David said…
Hi bazza,
Yes, I suppose this post is a little alarming in a way, if only for the fact that I've taken Prospero's line from "The Tempest" completely out of context! I was going to say in my post that really it relates to a quite racist sentiment, most possibly to do with the discourse of British colonialism rather than any existential anxiety I may have! Anyway, rest assured that I'm not totally filled to the brim with existential despair, but nonetheless do seem to have gone through a period where blogging fell to the very back of my mind. Still, it's good to be back, and also to hear from such good folk as yourself. I've missed you, bazza! Ahhhh!
Best Wishes,
David said…
This comment has been removed by the author.
klahanie said…
Hi David,

Humblest of humblest apologies for such a ridiculous length of time before I actually got to your posting. High time I commented.

I know, after our recent chat, that despite all your anxiety and frustration, you depressive thoughts will subside. I know that when we are feeling down, morbid thoughts can get in the way of our right to feel positive.

You see that light. The light of hope and resilience. Remember, my good friend, I'm always around if you need to express your valid thoughts and concerns.

Take care, David.

David said…
Hi Gary,
Thanks for your comment and concern.
As you know from our conversation, I have sought some help for how I'm feeling at present, but it's always good to know that I have the support of a good friend like yourself.
Unfortunately, my resilience seems to have been worn down a bit, but as you say, I'll be sure to see the light once again.
Thanks, as ever, for your ongoing friendship and support.
Very Best Wishes, my hairy pal,

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