Tuesday, May 7, 2013

Besting the Demon

I overheard a conversation today that really disturbed me.
I work in horticulture 1 1/2 days a week to supplement my art income, and one of my accounts is B Tower at Victoria hospital, home to the psych ward.
Three nursing students were having thier break in the garden there and talking about a clinically depressed person.  " I just want to tell her to shake it off, there's aways a bright side, I mean she's so full of herself'
I was about to say something but they left just as I was approaching, so here it is...
When a person is clinically depressed they can't "shake if off".
This is a medical condition, cause by a chemical imbalance.  No amount of wishing will make it go away, no amount of hoping will make it go away, it takes medication, time and support from people who care. 
Telling someone to "buck up, or shake it off" is the worst thing to do.  Trust me, a person who is clinically depressed is totally convinced that they are worthless, a waste of space, not deserving of even the air they breath, and to tell them to 'shake it off' will just convince them even more of this.
A person who is clinically depressed isn't 'full of themselves', they are in fact empty, so empty they ache, and feel like their soul has bled away.
I know. This is a demon I've fought most of my life. I can honestly say that Art saved me. Art gave my soul back to me.
I know those young chickies won't see this, and probably wouldn't 'get it' if they did, but maybe you will....I can only hope.
Installation: Rooted in Hope, artist: Ruth Davis currently at the London Regional Cancer Clinic Contents to be distributed through the community.


  1. Very well put Robin and thank you for being so open

  2. It's not something I openly talk about, but this particular incident so moved me to take action, that I had to, despite my deep reticence.


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