This is me, Neil Kelders, a picture taken less than one month ago. I’m attending an Improvisation workshop (anyone who knows Improv will know there is no hiding). Looking at it, I see how disconnected I am, I’m there in body, yes, but definitely not in mind. That day, shit, that day was a tough one, a very low day for me, a day of constant mini battles with depression. A constant stream of negative thoughts and images passing through my head.
This year, 2014, TWENTY ONE PLUS YEARS of battling depression had taken its toll. I was tired , I was done, finished.. it was time to go… Time to close my eyes to the world.
The Video Shocked ME!
I watched the video clip (Time to close my eyes to the world.) for the first time in months this week. It shocked me as to how flippant I was about ending my life, informing the camera that it is time to go. But you know what, that is where I was at, I felt I had exhausted all resources; internet research, some counselling, brief spell of medication, exercise, eating healthy, reading books – depression, mindfulness, listening to others tell their stories, the list of ineffectual resources seemed endless. Yes, I felt I had done it all and nothing worked. I still suffered badly from depression, not just for a day or two but maybe a week or two or longer. So of course, my ‘logical’ thinking told me, ‘I gave it (life) my best shot, it is just not for me’. It came to the point where I was tired of NOT BEING OKAY, I JUST WANT TO BE OKAY!!
I equate my decision (that my life will end soon) to that of deciding not to continue a sport, or continue playing an instrument or not continuing studying a particular course. That is where I got to, I couldn’t go on, imagine to be free from this constant, energy sapping battle. PEACE!
We are now in December and 10 months have passed since I recorded the video clip, so that in itself is very positive. I am still here.
Am I depression free? NO. Will I ever be? I don’t know, maybe not but that doesn’t matter. What matters is how I manage it.
So what is different……why am I still here? There are many reasons, all of which I will explore as the weeks scream by (even looking to the future is something I never truly did), but the main reason is…….I’m fighting back!!! I am learning everyday how to manage it, it (depression) IS part of me but I will not let it control me any more, I can’t!!
It is NOT time to close my eyes to world, IT IS TIME TO OPEN MY EYES AND LET THE WORLD IN!