October 19, 2019, 09:16:13 PM

Author Topic: Depression, Struggles and Light at the End of Every Tunnel  (Read 260711 times)

Offline ultamentkiller

Re: Depression, Struggles and Light at the End of Every Tunnel
« Reply #2040 on: December 19, 2017, 02:18:44 PM »
Thanks guys.

Yeah, I feel it takes our personality a while to set, and for us to gain confidence in it. In the meantime we have this terrible tendency to take our cues of what we "should" be doing from pop culture and the general direction society pushes us into.

Also, I feel the work I've been doing for the last year to educate people on autism has done a lot for me.
Makes sense. The best way to find peace within ourselves is doing good works for others.

Offline The Gem Cutter

  • Captain Analogy
  • Writing Group
  • Khaleesi
  • *
  • Posts: 2960
  • Total likes: 2437
  • Gender: Male
  • We've exhausted all possibilities - time to begin.
    • View Profile
    • The Gem Cutter Tales
Re: Depression, Struggles and Light at the End of Every Tunnel
« Reply #2041 on: December 20, 2017, 04:12:33 AM »
Yeah, I feel it takes our personality a while to set, and for us to gain confidence in it. In the meantime we have this terrible tendency to take our cues of what we "should" be doing from pop culture and the general direction society pushes us into.

Also, I feel the work I've been doing for the last year to educate people on autism has done a lot for me.

By way of analogy, it's like we're wading into the sea as we grow - always taller, more capable, but always up on our toes, entering deeper waters, facing taller waves. You begin young and ignorant and have to follow; you stop following, and but get lost; you find your own path, but lack the capability to follow it; you gain capabilities, but lack skill; gain skill but lack experience; gain experience but lack perspective; gain perspective, but lack wisdom; you gain wisdom, but lack the ability to share it; and on and on and on, until you die.
The Gem Cutter
"Each time, there is the same problem: do I dare? And then if you do dare, the dangers are there, and the help also, and the fulfillment or the fiasco. There's always the possibility of a fiasco. But there's also the possibility of bliss." - Joseph Campbell

Offline Magnus Hedén

  • High Lord of commas and Grand Master of semicolons
  • Godling
  • **
  • Posts: 257
  • Total likes: 208
  • Gender: Male
  • My name is Magnus. I make stuff up.
    • View Profile
    • My Patreon
Re: Depression, Struggles and Light at the End of Every Tunnel
« Reply #2042 on: December 20, 2017, 01:34:29 PM »
I'm a huge introvert and I've completely embraced that.

I'll be spending Christmas with my family, and that will be nice. I don't dislike them or the concept of a couple of days of celebration. But it used to be I'd stay there for nearly a week because it's what was expected, after which I was so mentally exhausted I was incapable of replying when someone spoke to me. Now I hang around for a couple of days. I'm too old to be making excuses so I'm open about why I withdraw. I'm happy to explain introversion to the curious. There are physiological differences that mean introverts spend more energy when socialising, and we tend to have lower dopamine reserves. Bad combo for those with a tendency towards depression. Yes, being over-social can trigger my depression.

I'll spend New Year's on my own. Even as I write that sentence, I know that it sounds tragic. The exact opposite someone who is prone to depression and anxiety should do, right? For me, it will be a blessing. I'll have spent the week before with my family and catching up with visiting friends. I rarely enjoy New Year's Eve parties anyway because I'm spent, by then.

I stopped caring about what people think and I engage with the world in a way that doesn't make me feel like shit. I still care about people, and I could never live completely without social interaction. But I'll stay home rather than regurgitate platitudes any day of the week. The people I enjoy spending time with tend to shut up unless they have something to say, and they tend to question my ideas and opinions. Small talk physically repulses me, that's how strongly I'm introverted.

I guess what I'm saying is: first, do what works best for you. Just make sure you never stop questioning the how and why. I have found routines can be a trap as well as a blessing.
« Last Edit: December 20, 2017, 01:36:20 PM by Magnus Hedén »
You can find stories on my Patreon
I'm also on Twitter and the Book of Faces

Offline ScarletBea

  • Welcome party and bringer of Cake. 2nd-in-Command of the Writing Contest
  • Powers That Be
  • Big Wee Hag
  • *
  • Posts: 11084
  • Total likes: 6402
  • Gender: Female
  • Geeky Reading Introvert
    • View Profile
    • LibraryThing profile
Re: Depression, Struggles and Light at the End of Every Tunnel
« Reply #2043 on: December 20, 2017, 02:07:39 PM »
Magnus, I'll also be spending New Year's Eve on my own, and for me that is also great :D

(actually, almost every single word you wrote could have been written by me! :o)
At home in the Fantasy Faction forum!

"Let us think the unthinkable, let us do the undoable. Let us prepare to grapple with the ineffable itself, and see if we may not eff it after all" - Douglas Adams

Online Eli_Freysson

Re: Depression, Struggles and Light at the End of Every Tunnel
« Reply #2044 on: December 20, 2017, 02:56:29 PM »
@Magnus Hedén, that sounds very familiar indeed.

I did spend last New Year's on my own. I just didn't have the energy for a drive to the countryside, or to go spend the evening with other relatives. So I just stayed in, had some drinks, watched the New Year's programs on my own, and then around midnight I walked up on a cliff that gives a perfect view of the fireworks all around town.

It was the best New Year's of my life.
I'll notify your next of kin... that you sucked!

Offline Rostum

Re: Depression, Struggles and Light at the End of Every Tunnel
« Reply #2045 on: December 20, 2017, 04:10:05 PM »
Quote
Magnus, I'll also be spending New Year's Eve on my own, and for me that is also great :D

Damn so much for the combined house warming, Birthday and New Years party we were planning!

Offline ScarletBea

  • Welcome party and bringer of Cake. 2nd-in-Command of the Writing Contest
  • Powers That Be
  • Big Wee Hag
  • *
  • Posts: 11084
  • Total likes: 6402
  • Gender: Female
  • Geeky Reading Introvert
    • View Profile
    • LibraryThing profile
Re: Depression, Struggles and Light at the End of Every Tunnel
« Reply #2046 on: December 20, 2017, 05:34:10 PM »
Rostum, you can still show up ;)
Due to Christmas and stuff, I'm only having 4 friends to lunch on my birthday (well, lunch at a restaurant, then coming over here), so there's still room for more ;D
At home in the Fantasy Faction forum!

"Let us think the unthinkable, let us do the undoable. Let us prepare to grapple with the ineffable itself, and see if we may not eff it after all" - Douglas Adams

Offline Eclipse

  • Warning: this topic has not been posted in for at least 120 days.
  • Dragonrider
  • ***
  • Posts: 4266
  • Total likes: 2132
  • Gender: Male
    • View Profile
Re: Depression, Struggles and Light at the End of Every Tunnel
« Reply #2047 on: December 20, 2017, 05:36:12 PM »
Is this your real Birthday?
According to some,* heroic deaths are admirable things

* Generally those who don't have to do it.Politicians and writers spring to mind

Jonathan Stroud:Ptolmy's Gate

Offline ScarletBea

  • Welcome party and bringer of Cake. 2nd-in-Command of the Writing Contest
  • Powers That Be
  • Big Wee Hag
  • *
  • Posts: 11084
  • Total likes: 6402
  • Gender: Female
  • Geeky Reading Introvert
    • View Profile
    • LibraryThing profile
Re: Depression, Struggles and Light at the End of Every Tunnel
« Reply #2048 on: December 20, 2017, 05:40:21 PM »
« Last Edit: December 20, 2017, 05:59:06 PM by ScarletBea »
At home in the Fantasy Faction forum!

"Let us think the unthinkable, let us do the undoable. Let us prepare to grapple with the ineffable itself, and see if we may not eff it after all" - Douglas Adams

Offline Rostum

Re: Depression, Struggles and Light at the End of Every Tunnel
« Reply #2049 on: December 21, 2017, 12:30:47 PM »
Quote
Rostum, you can still show up ;)
Due to Christmas and stuff, I'm only having 4 friends to lunch on my birthday (well, lunch at a restaurant, then coming over here), so there's still room for more ;D

Well it's a very kind offer but I am required to be elsewhere. Are you not heading back to Portugal for Christmas this Year? Enjoy your birthday lunch and may the cake be plentiful.

Offline ScarletBea

  • Welcome party and bringer of Cake. 2nd-in-Command of the Writing Contest
  • Powers That Be
  • Big Wee Hag
  • *
  • Posts: 11084
  • Total likes: 6402
  • Gender: Female
  • Geeky Reading Introvert
    • View Profile
    • LibraryThing profile
Re: Depression, Struggles and Light at the End of Every Tunnel
« Reply #2050 on: December 21, 2017, 12:34:54 PM »
Quote
Rostum, you can still show up ;)
Due to Christmas and stuff, I'm only having 4 friends to lunch on my birthday (well, lunch at a restaurant, then coming over here), so there's still room for more ;D

Well it's a very kind offer but I am required to be elsewhere. Are you not heading back to Portugal for Christmas this Year? Enjoy your birthday lunch and may the cake be plentiful.

This year, because of the house buying process, I left buying the plane ticket too late, and when I checked they were ridiculously expensive! So I'm staying in my new place, relaxing and enjoying my own company, meeting a few friends when I feel like it, and then go visit my parents mid-January :)

And thanks, there will be lots of cake - I was going to bake, but then decided I'd rather go to the cinema tomorrow afternoon, so I got a shop-bought one. Actually, 2 ;D
At home in the Fantasy Faction forum!

"Let us think the unthinkable, let us do the undoable. Let us prepare to grapple with the ineffable itself, and see if we may not eff it after all" - Douglas Adams

Offline NightWrite

Re: Depression, Struggles and Light at the End of Every Tunnel
« Reply #2051 on: December 22, 2017, 04:17:14 PM »
Ah New Year's Eve, the time when people in my family get obsessed with watching a bedazzled ball drop for a few seconds. I no longer see the appeal, but I still end up participating. If only the last few minutes of the year.

Most holidays have lost a lot of their appeal to me. I think my mom is worried, but I don't really see a problem. I don't need tons of decorations, which act as clutter most of the year, to amuse me. I don't need brightly colored wrapping paper, which ends up tossed out, to excite me. I don't need presents to know my family and friends care about me. And I certainly don't need the stress of the holidays.

Offline The Gem Cutter

  • Captain Analogy
  • Writing Group
  • Khaleesi
  • *
  • Posts: 2960
  • Total likes: 2437
  • Gender: Male
  • We've exhausted all possibilities - time to begin.
    • View Profile
    • The Gem Cutter Tales
Re: Depression, Struggles and Light at the End of Every Tunnel
« Reply #2052 on: December 23, 2017, 06:42:03 AM »
A long-time friend who struggled greatly in the past has come into his own in recent years as a doctor of extraordinary sensitivity and intelligence. He recently was in the right place at the right time to save lives that would have been lost. This inspired me to write the poem below, for we met in dark personal times that we both overcame, and he (probably too much) credits my encouragement during his periods of doubt. His skillful saving of lives serves as proof of what can sometimes be easily forgotten - the past is gone and on any given day, one might be able to make a tremendous difference with lasting positive echoes.

There’s a woman out there somewhere who is living still today,
And a man who stands upon the Earth who beneath the ground would lay,
Had a stranger not been waiting, not been there on that day,
Who might read the signs between the lines and keep the dark at bay.

All they’ll live to say and do will now still be done and said.
And their children have their parents still, not gravestones in their stead.
And forgotten now the road that led the stranger to that place.
It's gone under starless shadows now and vanished with no trace.
The Gem Cutter
"Each time, there is the same problem: do I dare? And then if you do dare, the dangers are there, and the help also, and the fulfillment or the fiasco. There's always the possibility of a fiasco. But there's also the possibility of bliss." - Joseph Campbell

Online Eli_Freysson

Re: Depression, Struggles and Light at the End of Every Tunnel
« Reply #2053 on: December 24, 2017, 02:45:20 PM »
Last December I posted the story of the Charlie Brown and Franz Stigler incident, and shortly after the story of German soldiers and American soldiers, both lost in the forest, showing up at the same farmhouse on Christmas Eve.

This story isn't specifically holiday-related, but I think it's a good one all the same:

The battle for Castle Itter.

A few days after Hitler's suicide, there were still Nazi ultra-loyalists causing trouble throughout Europe. Castle Itter was located in Austria, and had been turned into a prison for French POV's during the war, but also had some Eastern Europeans who had been sent over from Dachau.

Waffen SS troops were still roaming the general area, executing males for not fighting, and shooting at houses that displayed either a white flag, or an Austrian one. As the guards fled the prison the prisoners took it over, including what weapons remained. They sent a messenger to a nearby village to ask for help. The village had been taken over by the Austrian resistance, who were being aided by Major Josef Gangl, a German officer who had deserted along with some Wehrmacht soldiers. Gangl wanted to maintain position to protect the villagers; his plan being to wait for the Americans to arrive and then surrender.

After the message arrived he instead went out to look for the Americans and found a reconnaissance unit led by Captain Lee. Lee agreed to help and set off, but only managed to bring 14 American soldiers, ten German ones, and Gangl. They defeated SS troops on the way there, and then took up defensive positions at the castle. They ordered the French prisoners to hide, but they insisted on fighting alongside the soldiers.

Castle Itter came under attack by 100-150 SS troops. A French tennis star got Lee's permission to run a gauntlet of SS fire to report the situation, and was able to bring reinforcements back. The SS were promptly defeated.

Lee received the Distinguished Service Cross. Gangl died during the battle, shot while moving a French prime minister to safety. He was hailed in Austria as a hero.

It has been called the strangest battle of WW2, and is believed to be the only one where Germans and Americans fought side by side.

EDIT: And yes, Sabaton did make a kickass song about it. The footage is from various movies, but there is an actual movie based on this coming out in 2018:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LgTOoX45O0Q&list=RDMMLgTOoX45O0Q

« Last Edit: March 26, 2018, 05:05:11 PM by Eli_Freysson »
I'll notify your next of kin... that you sucked!

Online J.R. Darewood

  • aka Duckly Breadgood
  • Writing Group
  • Master Namer
  • ******
  • Posts: 2499
  • Total likes: 1466
  • Gender: Male
  • Zork. And it was all downhill from there.
    • View Profile
    • Nerd Empire
Re: Depression, Struggles and Light at the End of Every Tunnel
« Reply #2054 on: December 26, 2017, 04:16:17 AM »

So I wrote this a week or two ago as part of a writing in the second person exercise.  It's fictional. But it's about Christmas.

Spoiler for Hiden:
You’ve got Christmas figured out.

Your mother goes to church regularly, so you don’t tell her that the Christmas tree comes from an ancient Norse myth about ice and fire and now we destroy forests all over the world to erect some stupid tree and cover it with plastic only to dump them all out in few weeks.  You don’t mention that Santa Claus and his reindeer are actually the ancient Germanic God Wodan leading the Wild Hunt through the sky at Yule. You don’t tell her that Christmas is really capitalism, using colonial monotheism coopting ancient religious traditions to drive people into a mindless consumer frenzy that is ultimately destroying the planet. You don’t want her crying and praying for your soul.  But most of all, you don’t tell her that, as she and everyone else is scurrying around to make Christmas perfect, they actually make it awful.  It brings out all of the anxieties, tensions, financial stress, and just overall ugliness in every person.  You definitely don’t tell her that at Christmastime you think she and everyone else is batshit crazy.

Instead of all that you say.  “Tickets are too expensive.”  You’ve had experience and you’ve got this figured out.  It’s important to follow it with, “I’ll come and visit when the prices go down.”  That works much much better than, “I hate Christmas and I don’t want to come home and fight with you about God knows whatever you’re going to all be fighting about.”

Yet, somehow, you still fight. Your parents want you to come home for Christmas.  They want to know why you don’t love them (because God knows December 25th is the true test of love and none of the other days matter), and they remind you that they’re not going to be around much longer.  You remind them that they are only in their 60s and hopefully they won’t die before February when you come and visit.  That doesn’t seem to be a good enough argument.  Your father’s knee has been hurting and clearly that could be fatal at any moment.  Eventually you pretend like you have to go to the bathroom. They are still talking (don’t they care that you have been pretending to hold your bowels for twenty minutes now?) so you just hang up.

Your friends have get-togethers but you really don’t feel like bringing a casserole or a Secret Santa present or getting dressed or driving really. Plus, you have really important things to do, like cleaning the toilet or organizing those computer files or reading that book you’ve been meaning to read. So you tell them you have other plans. “What other plans?” they ask. Instead of telling them about the toilet, you invent a story about having some charity thing to do at the cancer ward of some hospital.  Suddenly you feel very guilty.

Christmas comes and you don’t want to get out of bed. There’s this hush in the air, some quiet expectation that you should be doing something Christmassy.  You try to read your book but you can’t concentrate.  You’re extremely hungry. You have half a protein bar and a glass of orange juice in your fridge and that’s all. You forgot to stock up on food. You walk through the neighborhood but everything is closed.  There is nothing to eat.

You sit at home quietly checking facebook.  No one is on facebook.  Even if they were, they are going to ask you what you are doing and you don’t want to tell them that you are sitting at home trying to ration half a protein bar until stores open again tomorrow.

You tell yourself you’re not lonely.  Your parents call.  You smile and pretend to be at a friends house.  The phone call seems to go on forever, and when it’s over the fake smile leaves your face.

You can’t stand it anymore.  You have to eat something.  You walk.  You walk for two miles until you find a 7 eleven that’s actually open. They are out of pizza.  And chicken strips.  And sandwiches.  They’ll get a shipment in tomorrow.  But they do have hot dogs and a bag of tortilla chips.  You are so hungry that you order seven hot dogs.

You step outside and there is a man with a long scraggly beard huddled on the corner, wrapped in a forest green blanket.  He looks like he might be schizophrenic but you talk to him anyway.  “Would you like a hot dog?” you ask.  He doesn’t speak, he just nods.  His hand trembles as he reaches out for the food.  It doesn’t stop shaking as he eats, you notice.

It’s cold--uncomfortably cold-- but you stay there and eat with him.  You share your chips.  Soon your hand is shaking too.  You say nothing, and just eat in silence.

You’ve got Christmas figured out.