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Black Hole Sun…

 

Written by – KMFP  (Profile/Bio: http://www.thekmfp.com/team/the-kmfp/)

With the suicide of another “troubled celebrity” there will undoubtedly again be public conversations taking place via print and visual media surrounding addiction and depression, and hopefully in personal circles as well.

BHS1And while I’ll certainly remember Chris Cornell for his incredible vocals and lyrics – as most others will – what I personally mourn is the loss of yet one more brother in a seemingly endless stream of this unfortunate fraternity.

And as jacked up as this may sound to you “normal” folk out there, that voice and those lyrics will remain intact, forever recorded for remembrance and reverence, but what isn’t left behind are the thoughts and the knowledge he may have possessed for coping… even if ultimately succumbing.  So selfishly I also mourn the possible secrets that may have benefited the rest of us from those times when he was “winning”, for lack of a better word.

As I’ve written many times and I am stridently wide-open about, alcoholism has – and always will be – a huge part of my life. Though I am sober for years now, I am also keenly aware of how quickly that can change, and these “secrets” I alluded to are always being sought.

There is not an addict out there, from the gutter drunk to the penthouse pill-popper, who doesn’t have at least one nugget of wisdom for his “brethren” – if he’s managed to be clean for even a mere half of a day.  We bond over the filth of our disease… but certainly over our individual victories as well, regardless of how small or far between.

What predominantly leads most of us to the self-medication pit that so often becomes our addiction of choice are those underlying issues that don’t just POOF! and go way, even when or if that obvious, overlying issue is somewhat conquered – we just get to deal with it “raw” now, if you will.

Drinking was the obvious “in-your-face” portion of my life that was so glaringly in need of being addressed, but the internal enemies for which I initially sought such numbness remained behind for confrontation… only sans my makeshift arsenal of the bottle now discarded somewhere on an old battlefield.

Along these lines, you will find that many of those of my ilk also possess a shared knack for artistry, be-it through words, painting, music or some other chosen outlet. And that gift often comes from the very troubles that besiege us for much of our days.

We may take what’s deepest inside of us and spin it into beautiful music, captivatingly dark poetry, or stories that may have you jealous of our seemingly enviable talent.  What you’re not aware of is that – considered brilliant to many an outsider – we would swap this “gift” in a heartbeat if it meant that we could free ourselves of the very feelings that drive such output in the first place.

In less than a decade alone I have personally known no fewer than three alcoholics who have left their perceived unmanageable pain behind by way of suicide, but I am also convinced that this is not always their end-goal, but rather accidental in many cases.

I know because I’ve been there…

BHS2In my darker and far more embarrassing years, I have been so shitfaced and depressed that I wrapped a belt around my own neck and climbed to the top of a ladder in my basement, toying dangerously with the idea – and disturbingly even the “sensation” – wondering what the aftermath would look like… what it would sound like to the world around me.

These thoughts and these actions are by no means healthy, but they are also not as uncommon as you Cleaver’s and Brady’s of the world would like to pretend.  Sure, I always descended from my perch, but you will not convince me that others haven’t also been on that top rung themselves and possibly slipped, or even blatantly passed out in such a compromising position.

This whole world is built AND turns on fractions of inches, and many a life crumbles or succeeds by simply a gnat’s nut in either direction much of the time.

Who slipped while merely contemplating the thought, but with an empty bottle at the foot of the stepstool… as opposed to the many others who may have only barely had enough coordination to get down, put themselves to sleep, and try this fight once more the next day?

The truth is that the agony and daily pain of the unknown of depression and keeping it at bay is on many occasions far worse than our addiction ever was, and absolutely just as lethal. We cope as best as each individual one of us can, and we do so with words, canvases or musical notes, among other tools we pick up along the journey.

Some are labeled “brilliant”, renowned the world over and rewarded with what society’s warped definition of success and monetary reward has morphed to look like, while others of us are perhaps only talented and legendary in our own minds. But you would be surprised how little actually separates the two ends of that spectrum when both heads are meeting a pillow, a pint or a street curb somewhere each evening.

The money means nothing, the success was never for you anyway, and the words that you have written which are now being shared amongst the masses, read, or even sung back to you by others, may do little if anything to fight back that demon who was there and has been growing long before any of the rest came alone.

I don’t even know how to wrap this up into that tiny little bow that us self-proclaimed “writers” always feel necessary at the completion of our works, and I sure as hell don’t know what the answer is, however – as will be written and talked about front and center again for at least the next few weeks – conversation is absolutely necessary, and even more-so, condemnation and humiliation must end, not only for those who are lucky enough to escape the grasp of this monster… but even more importantly by those of us placing such daily shame on ourselves for having it.

BHS3It is wrong, I can assure you that is very, very real, and it is nothing that should be buried away and not spoken of.  Like the gay or biracial family member to the bigoted or intolerant asshole of a relative who wishes them unseen or unheard, the depressed or addicted one does not cease to exist either, simply because you choose not to talk about them at the watercooler or on your barstool, hypocritically burying your own demons on many occasions.

We are here, we are many, and we will be heard.

Let’s just hope it is through our art more often than our demise… KMFP-out!

 

(KMFP Archives: http://www.thekmfp.com/the-kmfp-2/)
(“About The KMFP”:
http://www.thekmfp.com/about-the-kmfp/)

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