So much has happened since I last wrote and most of it is is not good and having said that, I would like to say this: this entry is dedicated, with much love, to Cassie. Cassie was a young women who came in and out of treatment for her drug addiction for years in Los Angeles before finally succumbing to the depression that had plagued her for more than a decade. She was a beautiful, funny, much loved girl in her early Twenties and on a sunny day in Malibu she pulled over on the PCH and swallowed every pill she had on her. When the police found her she was already brain dead, so they took her to the hospital where they harvested her organs and that was it. Over. I went to her memorial to pay my respects to her mother because even though I didn’t know her as well as some of my colleagues, I had her in some of the groups I lead at the treatment center.
I went to that memorial and I cried. I cried hard. I cried because I have depression too and I hate to see it take one of my tribe out, especially a young one. I hate that I can’t tell her, from the vantage point of 46, that it may get better after so much bullshit that can take years to wade through but by staying alive you reserve the choice and ability to begin again at any moment. She forfeited that choice that sunny June afternoon. The Devil is in Depression as he is also in Drugs and if you don’t believe that you just haven’t seen it for yourself, yet, and thank God for that. You are among the truly lucky.
Driving home from the service in Malibu I needed inspiration, I needed hope and something life affirming: there was only one man for the job, MGK. I drove through the hills and thought about the song where he sings about being “damn near suicidal.” I think of all of the amazing art he’s produced and adventures he’s had and the prices he’s had to pay to do that, that we’ll never know about. I contemplate his, what strikes me as an amazing, evolution as I listen to “Kiss the Sky” and I wonder about Cassie’s evolution-what would have been next for her? Or was this always going to be the end? What is fate? What is free will? Where is God in all of this?
Many of these questions will resurface in the next few weeks for me as I go from being the Employee of the Month to being demoted within a two week span. Questions of self-worth and where we derive it from as well as happiness and how can we ever capture it or is that an error in thinking, as we therapists say.
From diagnosis to decline in my kidney function to a problem in my hip so severe it’s hard to walk, the one constant I’ve had has been music. I’ve loved music since I was a kid and always played something since starting the violin (geek alert!) in fourth grade. I played the bass guitar through-out high school in hopes of forming an all female Motley Crue and touring the world. Now, I take lessons on an Epiphone Les Paul silver burst guitar that, I have to say, is bad-ass. Surely, an invitation from Jerry Cantrell to hang and jam is just around the corner!
More to come soon…I promise…