Monday, February 7, 2011

An Affliction; An Intimate Tour Through Self-Examination.

Throughout my childhood (and regrettably even to this day) I was continually (more or less) forced to "dumb down" my expansive vocabulary, as well as my desired topics of conversation in an effort to meet the comprehensible capacities of my peers. I never truly experienced over-whelming levels of trouble "fitting in" socially, as I've had a plethora of friends (more so during my early-childhood, as of now I am more of a recluse, unfortunately), however, all of my actions (and even some friendships) hinted (at least to me) of artificiality and superficiality. I could readily enjoy the simplistic companionship of almost any decent, genuine person, but it was (and still, to this day, is) exceptionally rare to find someone whom I could honestly connect with on an intellectual level. To this date, I've only found, perhaps, a few individuals to whom I can ascribe this characteristic to, and even with them I sometimes cannot cognitively share a true understanding of the world. I always feel as though I'm pretending, projecting an outward facade towards others while simultaneously betraying my inner-self.

My first, seemingly overbearing, bout with depression came (roughly) at the age of 16 or 17,  conveniently placed, approximately, at the time that I truly began to become disillusioned to the reality of the commonality that I was assimilating into. The whole of my friends and peers were complacent with schooling, as well as their teenage lives and were preparing to blissfully attend college, but I couldn't help but query about the absurdity of the societal systems that they were buying into, and the mundane outlook pertaining to the following of the beaten path. (No, I'm not an anarchist despite how these ravings may sound). I couldn't help but yearn for something contrary to the norm, something.....more abstract? Nobody understood; humanity cannot..or, rather, refuses to even begin to fathom that which I am speaking of. Society attributes my alternative, "deviant" attitudes towards life and society to a more base, trivial set of emotions such as: laziness, or fear of peaking in terms of maturity. I have now developed an overbearing existential anxiety, which has perpetually wound its way into the majority of my worldly laments, and is one of the main afflictions that still plagues me obstinately.

I feel as if I cannot continue "lying" to myself of the true relevance (or lack thereof) of my menial existence. I feel as though I can penetrate through the overarching veil of reality whereas others cannot, and view life as it truly is: a maddening array of paradoxes, ultimately pointless; futile on the cosmic scale. Nothing that I partake in has any true consequence. I am, seemingly, just living (or, more fittingly, proceeding) through a series of arbitrary distractions that I fabricate in order to ineffectively galvanize my mind and body whilst I parade towards the inevitable, ultimate finality of death.

I also feel that my intelligence is faltering (in a sense). It vexes me exceedingly. I'm unsure of whether the underlying cause is simply the lack of "exercise" that my mind has been stimulated with as of late,or the psycho chemical effects of the depression that has enveloped me. Intermittently it feels as though my brain has released an "emotional opiate" intended to alleviate the psychological turbulence within, and it negates/inhibits my critical thinking capacities (my oh-so cherished ability to think analytically and act based upon the premise of deductive reasoning) in an unsuccessful attempt to prevent me from further analyzing my problems and, thus, perpetuating the grief. I don't believe that there is much worth available to me through therapy (I'm discouraged at the possibility of some form of psycho-therapy).

I suppose that, to a point, people with higher intelligences are able to "solve" more of life's quandaries, hardships, unforeseen predicaments, etc.  And, thus, have "happier" lives (possessing greater wealth, cushier jobs, more spacious housing arrangements, and many of the other pillars of what is, in the general consensus of a capitalist society, considered to be a "good" and desirable life), but at some point, elevated to the peak of the intelligence scale where few are able to claim position, that positive linear correlation between IQ and happiness simply drops off into oblivion, for people of that caliber seem to simply perceive the world through different means. At day's end, we're all just 'players on a stage'.

1 comment:

  1. I’ve not met anyone personally who has the form of depression you describe and cannot profess knowledge about how to deal with it. However, I myself have experienced brief moments of absolute depression in which all seems futile. Usually these are sparked by trivial happenstance, not an existential malaise. For instance, walking on the beach I see other’s detritus, plastic bags, bottle caps, and broken bits of plastic. Suddenly I am overwhelmed by feelings of futility as I picture the death of turtles that eat the bags mistaking them for sea creatures. In that moment I see humankind as a disease, a plague on the planet Earth and life seems to be of no value.

    Fortunately I have learned to see myself as more valuable than those who have no thought beyond materialistic pleasure seeking in the moment. I know that I cannot save the planet from mankind. Never the less, the ability to come back to my center allows me to take action in the moment. In that particular situation, I chose to pick up the trash around one family’s chairs and umbrella, and carry it to a trashcan. Of course they looked at me as though I were a madman. So what! I knew that I had bested their pathetically uncaring natures. In any moment that threatens to put me under I always try to find something to do that reiterates my value and worth as opposed to the sad unaware diurnal process of the lives around me.

    Of course my depressions are momentary. I do not go for days, weeks, or months at a time feeling that life is worthless. I know that I would seek help if that were the case. Also, I am an old fart, not a young man and have had a lifetime to work through my problems. In fact, my subconscious was working on those problems very early on. I remember a dream I had as a very young man. I sat in an auditorium with my peers watching a theatrical production. The play was not important because it was not real. Neither was the audience because I held to metal handles in my hands, one in the left, and the other in the right. The handles were attached to the two big circular ears of my Mickey Mouse cap, and I wiggled them back and forth as I watched the play and the responses of the audience around me. Thus, as a sleeping teenager I mocked the peers who I sought to make my friends in my conscious life.

    Don’t know if this long diatribe helps. I do know how lucky I have been all my life to have the sense of my own personal worth despite the vapid shallowness with which I am surrounded. Anyway, thanks for looking at my blog and following it. I shall touch down here occasionally in the future just to see what you are doing, and reporting.