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Tag Archives: Hopelessness

The Sickness and the Seal | [Short Story]


Contextual background: A brief history of Ür and its rise to greatness is given along with the story of how affliction came to be.

The walled city of Ür had not always been the great fortress in which Catharsis had dwelled. It was once a lonely oasis in the desert, won by nomadic herdsman who had battled for its possession in order to nourish their herds and provide sustenance for their families. A place of healing in the middle of a harsh, windswept, barren land. The grand-eldest male by the name of Ür, gave the fertile gem its name – earliest in the elder tongue.

Soon after, blood clans made pilgrimage to the lush gardens of the watering hole and joined their families of the original community. They brought with them their customs and beliefs, families, and herds. They added their lands to the original estate and struck its edges to mark their claim with altars to their deities.

Down through the time of unrecorded and recorded history, the oasis community of Ür matured in size and prestige, quickly mounting to power as an unrivaled city-state and controlling the land to its horizons. Through many generations did Ür prosper under a golden age. It basked in its splendor, taking in travelers far and wide. All who knew of Ür knew of its greatness, even far beyond the horizons of its realm. It prospered in its glory and was regarded as a bastion to the weary, lost, disheartened, and broken.

Its strength came in its acceptance of its citizenry’s diversity, welcoming all who wished entrance, save for those whose lives consisted of the worst of mannerisms – greed, pride, lying, thievery, conceit, ill will, bigotry, and murder. Nay, even those lost souls were granted sanctuary if they received the king’s oath of fealty, making their pledge of faithfulness and good will to both their master and fellow man. For only the pure and good willed were permitted stay within the city’s walls.

But it soon came to pass that an unnamable sickness came to the people of Ür.

It was an invisible sickness to most – only visible and comprehendible to those who endured it. It was so believed to steal freely throughout the walled city, creeping like some menacing fog yet without detection. It could not be fought because it could not be seen, and a sense of mistrust and paranoia soon descended on the land. From whence did this pestilence emanate? Why did it torment the people of the glorious citadel? How could it be routed out? What were its ailments? Was it escapable?

Soon whispers in taverns and alleyways gave rise to the belief it was a punishment from the gods of the soil, water, and heavens for man’s abuse of their resources. Man’s lack of respect for what the deities had preciously and graciously imparted unto them.

Whispers soon turned into a dark, unspoken secret realization that it was a torment conjured from the Wahrlog – the evil demon lord that lay beyond the Marshlands of Melancholia and deep in the Quagmire of Hopelessness. Sent to plague humankind. And so this belief held steadfast amongst the citizens within the city’s walls.

The people named it affliction.

Sacrifices were made to appease the demon who created affliction. Fruits, flowers, and grains were laid before the great gates and in the marketplace. The blood of animals was shed and smeared on the doorposts and windows of the earthen hovels of the city. Great warriors were sacrificed.

But to no avail.

Affliction still swept its invisible hand across the land like some gray blanket of hopelessness.

It did not exist completely unseen, however. For those afflicted showed similar signs of the invisible illness. They could identify each other for they were the only ones to see it. It was not invisible to them. They held another certainty in their common – they were all visited by the Wahrlog.

To not be afflicted, one had to know what was to be looked for so that it might be named and identified. “Those who do not see” were blessed amongst the masses, for they would never know the loneliness that gripped its prey. They would never feel the talons of melancholy nor the depths of the deep dark pain it spawned.

Catharsis could see clearly, the others whom had been afflicted with the same torment with which he himself lived. He could sense their numbness, almost smell it as they wallowed through their daily lives cocooned in their catatonic shells. He could see the lethargy and apathy in their eyes as clear as he could see the noonday sun, or the abundance of his crops. He could see that their solitude and isolation were manifestations of the affliction of the darkness – that constrictor which grips its victim and strangles him of life.

Catharsis had lived with these things for the grander part of his life and it greatly added to his confusion about who he was as a man. He oftentimes felt alone in his struggle. Wishing this affliction would leave him. Often times wishing for his own life to end to escape his life of grey.

*          *          *

Affliction soon found its way to the royal family and took the life of the regent’s heir – it had not preference nor prejudice against whom it took. Shock and panic drove through the city’s streets. How could this sickness have impressed royal blood?! How could it taint such pure bloodlines? What mockery was this?

And so, to combat affliction an edict went out from the royal family and the priesthood: those who were tormented with affliction would be scarred by the branding man’s iron for all to see. They would be labeled with the eternal mark upon their forehead to be ostracized, outcast, and stigmatized.

Identified by the seal, shunned, and avoided so their inexplainable poison would be naught able to disease others.

 
 

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This Depression Thing


The whole issue with this depression thing – it has sucked all life out of me like some soul harvester.

This past year has been one of the most relentless struggles I’ve had to endure. It gets worse each day I aimlessly trudge through my daily dosage of hours like a walker. And I don’t see an end in sight.

I feel like I stare at an hourglass in front of me. Glossy-eyed and lost faced, watching each grain of sand tumble through the bottleneck , building up the mountain in the chamber below that represents time passed.

The sand falls in slow motion.

Maybe you can relate?

shades_01I don’t see the sunshine. I’ve had this gray film over my life. It is a sunny, bright, 82º outside my Norfolk, VA apartment. I can’t see it. I don’t feel the warmth in my soul. I keep all the blinds shut. It’s not the kind of depression where you can simply open the blinds and the gray is gone. That doesn’t work. Our friends will suggest it…to open the shades and let the sunshine in. But those who don’t live with it can’t ever understand that just doesn’t work. It’s a fog of war. It stays.It permeates the skin and sinks down to the core. It’s a wave that has to be ridden.

I’ve been riding the crashing part of the barrel for months.

I have no drive. It’s really hard to continue when you feel so hopelessly apathetic. I get so sick of looking at the hourglass and longing for sleep. If I feel inspired to do something I change to something else before I finish what I started. So many things left unfinished. I wander back and forth in my apartment sometimes feeling that I’m going crazy. Most people that don’t live with this affliction would quickly suggest to exercise. All the other articles and advice out there scream that, but how can you bring yourself to that if you can’t even walk across the street to the beach on such an ideal day?

I’m numb and I don’t feel happiness. I don’t feel the happiness that other people feel when it’s sunny out. I should. I want to feel it. I want to feel “normal”. I want the chemicals in my body to react like that. I don’t want to be numb anymore. Catatonic. Zombie-ish. I’m trying to blog it out because journaling is supposed to be the best form of therapy for depression. It hardly is for me. It’s not cathartic. I’ve had an impossible time dragging myself to type this post and hardly feel any form of relief or healing from doing so. Getting a buzz from drinking (exactly the opposite of what I need to be doing, I know) used to give me a tinge of happiness. Now, that doesn’t even work. I’ve lost all interest in all things: writing, drinking, walking on the beach, reading, drawing, sex, photography, being a dad, friendships. I’ve thought a lot about dying. Not being suicidal, but just as a quiet way to end the mind numbing hourglass watching.Quote_gray_001

I fail at relationship. I isolate. I drive people away. I drive myself away from people. I isolate myself from those who love and care about me. It makes me drive those away who love me. 

I’ve lost a foothold in my faith. I used to find peace when I read the Word and prayed early in the morning. That has been sucked away too. I don’t have the same happiness that I see on other believers’ faces, like when I used to go to church. I want that simple happiness of just waking up and being happy. I know they have their own problems, and sometimes that smile is just plastered on, but I just want to feel the Spirit move me to happiness.

*    *     *

How does your depression make you feel?

Maybe all this strikes a cord. If it does, please remember: you certainly are not alone.

 

 

 
10 Comments

Posted by on 08/04/2016 in Depression

 

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When Do We Decide to Commit Suicide? | [REBLOG]

When Do We Decide to Commit Suicide? | [REBLOG]

I’ve been Tweeting with a friend whose site is based on raising suicide awareness, especially for those who need answers to “why?”. I wrote this some time ago and am hoping it helps a little in the way of explaining my personal experience.

surviving the specter

NOTE: Dear reader, this post talks openly about suicide. If this is a trigger, please do not read it at this time. Thank you. May peace come to you in your valley.

I attempted suicide on 9/14/14.

I had been on the noose for about 45 minutes.

I am fortunate. I had friends that saved me.

I hope that my words may provide some closure for those that may still be seeking answers. A small bit of understanding to answer the question, “Why?” My family and friends are fortunate because I am able to answer those questions for. I am fortunate to be alive and explain it to them.

************************************************************************************

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“It’s the easy way out.”Psh! Friend if you’re that deep, it’s the ONLY way out.

“He just wanted attention.” I wanted peace.

“He was so selfish.” I wasn’t thinking of anybody.

So when does it all become too much to…

View original post 622 more words

 
 

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Catharsis and the Angels


michael

Catharsis hung there.

Limp. Swaying from the rafter that supported his mud and straw-thatched roof.

He could hear the cord stretch and groan from his weight as his eyes became heavy.

Back and forth.

Back.

And.

Forth.

His eyes began to close as the cord tightened and choked off his life wind. Choking his hope. His will to live. His resilience.

He hadn’t the will to raise his arms and save himself. He could have he supposed. But he refused. He felt a calming peace blanketing him as his life energy fell through the soles of his feet, leaving his body forever.

Finally.

Finally he would be free of this torment.

Finally he would have peace.

Peace from this Wahrlog of the Darkness.

The Darkness. A darkness so consuming, so debilitating, that each day was a struggle. A struggle to rise each morning. A struggle to tend to his fields. A struggle to continue life. A life coated with apathy.

He had hid it well from his fellow villagers. Masked it behind his toiling in the fields. Masked it behind his inward solitude. Disguised it with the will to be alone. To remain undiscovered and unbranded with the Stigma.

He knew others who had been discovered. Who had been branded on their forehead with the seal of their affliction – their illness. He remembered seeing the searing iron hissing as it sunk into their flesh. Leaving a soft cloud of smoke as it pushed deeper into them.

And their screams.

Their screams.

They were forever labeled in society by those they knew. Those they loved. Those they had children with. Their families. Their neighbors.

Branded.

Shunned.

Stigmatized.

Some, like himself, afflicted with the darkness – the deep, dark, debilitating depression he knew since he was a child.

Others, afflicted with the fear – remnants of some past traumatic stressing life event that had ripped their soul in half, and forced them to relive their past horrors. Manifest in the forms of flashbacks and tortured by the night harpies of terror. He could hear their screams at night.

Alone.

In the darkness.

Others, afflicted with the rage – elevated, hyper levels of anxiousness brought on by some outside trigger. Issuing in a brain pandemonium of paranoia and irritability. Lashing out at those whom they held closest as they wandered through their personal fog of war.

Through his closing vision, Catharsis could faintly make out the Specter emerging from the darkness. Moving closer. Stretching his pale white claws from his cloak, his talons scratching the walls of Catharsis’ mud home. Digging into the hardened clay and leaving deep cuts as chunks of adobe were ripped away. In and out of his slumber, Catharsis thought how they resembled his fields that he had just returned from. Their perfect rows whose cast shadows aligned harmoniously in the setting sun.

This was his last thought of peacefulness as Catharsis’ eyes closed.

And Specter’s grip closed around his throat.

*     *     *

At the instant the beast secured his grip to claim his prize, a magnificent burst of white light flooded the room.

Specter shrieked like a hung pig being bled dry and lurched back from the blazon firestorm that enshrouded the hanging body.

Two forms took their place next to the body of Catharsis. On either side, like stark angelic sentries sent to protect him from the Wahrlog. They raised their hands and in a fluid motion brought them down, lances appearing and striking the mud floor.

Specter hissed and the sentries lowered their weapons, tips pointed at its open throat.

A sentry stepped forward a crouched in the dirt, bracing itself with its weapon. Slowly and deliberately it scratched a line across the floor, fire following in a steady trail.

It retracted and regained its position.

“Though shall not pass” the two sentries whispered.

Specter lurched through the flame and in one swift movement was impaled on their spears. Instantaneously, Specter disintegrated into the light, taking with him his shadows and his darkness.

*     *     *

As one sentry held fast the body of Catharsis, the other swiftly swung its lance at the noose, cutting him free.

Lowering him to the ground the sentries whispered, “you are safe child.”

 

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Killing Myself | Part 2

Killing Myself | Part 2

*TW

Hello my little failure, we’ve been waiting for your return

We know our pressure’s way too much, we know for what you yearn

A little song of sweet respite, to whet your pathetic appetite

We promise to close the lid real tight, and flood our darkness in to your light

*     *     *

I made a drink of 100 proof, my razor blade of choice

To drown out demon voices, to cut their endless noise

I mixed it full with anger, and hurt, and hopelessness

I drank it quick, I drank it fast, I drank it with relentlessness

*     *     *

Callous words are spoken, when we all need love the most

I needed grace, I needed kindness, and to vent without recourse

Maybe one day we’ll be able, to cast aside our pride

And give the tenderness we need, and put ourselves aside

 

 
 

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The Night I Killed Myself |Part 1?

The Night I Killed Myself |Part 1?

TRIGGER WARNING – This post ideals with suicide. Please do not read it dear friend, if this is a trigger.Mom. Angels. I am safe. This is just a memoir because I know others have no choice but to survive through the same. You have supported me to talk about this curse, through God’s strength.

Regardless of how alone you feel at this very moment – YOU. ARE. NOT. Please reach out. We are here to support our brothers and sisters through this dark abyss. Through this Specter. You can read as much as I remember about my personal fight and that night of hopelessness from the end of the belt.

the night I killed myself

Image of poem with lyrics below, as well as an image of hand holding an empty bottle with pills emptied out on a wooden floor.

The Night I Killed Myself | Part 1?

Anger triggers, trigger pulls, Specter slashing me

Digging claws of hopelessness, broke on bended knee

Half pill, whole pill, crying on the floor

Throw it back, chase it down, hanging from the door

Laughing at the little thought, that I was trying to sleep

“You fool you’re trying to die tonight, you worthless, monstrous creep”

Sitting on the bedroom floor, belt around my neck

Pills on wood, two bottles gone, end without regret

The pain, the hopelessness, the ever growing rage

The beast had torn apart, his rusted , Lexapronic cage

“SHH-! Don’t say it. Don’t dare speak his name”

“He’ll hear you, and he’ll cut you, and brand you with his flame.”

I can’t take the monsters, that rape me every day

Taunting me to exit out, you know, the easy way

Ever since the middle school, I entered a layer of hell

I never made it out of there, the pain’s too much to tell

*   *   *

There’s this girl that stole my heart, she used to call me dad

A fool to think I was the hero, I knew she never had

 
11 Comments

Posted by on 04/09/2016 in Depression, Suicide

 

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Who Is Specter? | [REBLOG]


In lieu of September being Suicide Prevention/Awareness Month, I am reposting some of my older posts that deal with my depression, my suicide attempt, and verses/quotations of hope and strength. Please feel free to pass these on to others who feel alone – it is one of the worst feelings in the world to go through this by yourself. Thank you for visiting and sharing your thoughts, my friend.

X Chris


specter

When I first began thinking of writing about clinical depression, I stopped thinking. I put it to rest. Why would I consider doing what I was considering? What would I do in the face of my family and friends when they found out? I felt so shameful. So inadequate. So inferior. And I felt so alone. Especially as a male. Men aren’t supposed to talk about our feelings. We’re not supposed to cry. Not show weakness. Not show emotion.

specter_003This…thing I had, made me do all those things. And it wouldn’t leave. It just lingered there for years. It reared its ugly head more than I could handle. I saw its sinister teeth glistening in the shadows. Its chipped, stiletto nails sliding around the corner and scratching on the walls of my soul.

Later, through years of counseling and medicine, doctors help me put a name to this thing and they called it depression. I’ve come to call it, Specter.

A big step to my living with depression and being haunted by Specter was the realization of what I was going through was real. It was not imagined. I was not a freak or different because I was going through it. I was normal. The Lord just dealt me a hand that was different from other folks in my life. That’s a-whole-‘nother talk which I imagine I’ll address in the future. The biggest help to me was decoding the codex. Once I discovered the following four items, I could live with my depression. Yours may be different my friend. You may have less. You may have more. There’s no standard here. And that’s perfectly fine.

Here are four truths I’ve learned from my years of living with depression:

Read the rest of this entry »

 

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What Is The Most Important Thing You Need To Make A Necessary Ending? [BOOK REVIEW]



Necessary-Endings

I recently wrote a post about a concept Dr. Henry Cloud discusses – necessary endings. His book Necessary Endings, was SO influential that I decided to make one of THE MOST pivotal decisions of my life. Two chapters in particular (5 and 6) clinched things for me and when I read them, the film came off my eyes and the answers became crystal clear.

I want to share these two chapters with you over the next few days.

For the rest of this post I’d like to take you through chapter 5, and reveal THE MOST important thing you need to have in order to make a necessary ending. I plan on doing the same for chapter 6 in a few more days.

I am really looking forward to having a dialogue in the Comments section of each post so if you’re game and want to join along, GO GET THE BOOK ALREADY! http://www.amazon.com/Necessary-Endings-Employees-Businesses-Relationships/dp/0061777129. I hope you enjoy hearing about his book as much as I enjoyed reading it. This is going to be a lengthier post so grab some coffee, or tea (with milk or lemon if you’re across the pond), find a comfy spot to read, and enjoy!

What Brought Me To My Necessary Ending?

The pivotal decision I made was to end my marriage. A little history (and herstory) is needed for background, and to put things in perspective… Read the rest of this entry »

 

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“Not Gonna Die”, Skillet [Video, Lyrics]



This is to all the survivors looking at the computer screen…looking into hopelessness.

Please fight long enough to change your mind.

We’re NOT GONNA DIE TONIGHT!

“Not Gonna Die”

Death surrounds
My heartbeat’s slowing down
I won’t take this world’s abuse
I won’t give up, I refuse!

This is how it feels when you’re bent and broken
This is how it feels when your dignity’s stolen
When everything you love is leaving
You hold on to what you believe in

The last thing I heard was you whispering goodbye
And then I heard you flat line

No, not gonna die tonight
We’re gonna stand and fight forever
(Don’t close your eyes)
No, not gonna die tonight
We’re gonna fight for us together
No, we’re not gonna die tonight

Break their hold
‘Cause I won’t be controlled
They can’t keep their chains on me
When the truth has set me free

This is how it feels when you take your life back
This is how it feels when you finally fight back
When life pushes me I push harder
What doesn’t kill me makes me stronger

The last thing I heard was you whispering goodbye
And then I heard you flat line

No, not gonna die tonight
We’re gonna stand and fight forever
(Don’t close your eyes)
No, not gonna die tonight
We’re gonna fight for us together
No, we’re not gonna die tonight

Don’t you give up on me
You’re everything I need
This is how it feels when you take your life back
This is how it feels when you fight back

No, not gonna die tonight
We’re gonna stand and fight forever
(Don’t close your eyes)
No, not gonna die tonight
We’re gonna fight for us together
No, we’re not gonna die tonight
No, we’re not gonna die tonight

Not gonna die
(Not gonna die)
Not gonna die
(Not gonna die)
Not gonna die tonight


 

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“Good To Be Alive”, Skillet [Video, Lyrics]



Look at that drink you have in your hand and the sleeping pills or Xanax in the other. Let them fall down the drain.

The razor blade you’re holding with the perfect piece of flesh you’ll mark. Put the blade down. Cover your precious skin.

That noose you made from your strongest belt and zip tied so it wouldn’t slip from the door knob. Leave and go into the other room.

Just long enough to listen to this song…

No matter how counter intuitive it is to everything you want to do right now. Take a pause and just listen…

Believe in yourself and your inner strength. That kind that you muster every single day to face your world. You are a warrior. I believe in you.

“Good To Be Alive”

When all you got are broken dreams
Just need a second chance
And everything you want to be
Gets taken from your hands
We hold on to each other
All we have is all we need
‘Cause one way or another
We always make it you and me

This life could almost kill ya
When you’re trying to survive
It’s good to be here with ya
And it’s good to be alive

It’s good to be alive
I was lost and I was gone
I was almost dead inside
You and me against the world
It’s a beautiful night
It’s good to be alive

It’s good to be alive
It’s good to be alive
It’s good to be alive
It’s good to be alive
It’s good to be alive

Driving down this highway
Soaking up the sun
Got miles to go before we get home
And the journey’s just begun
We hold on to each other
You are everything I need
You feel like forever
You’re the second chance for me

This life could almost kill ya
When you’re trying to survive
It’s good to be here with ya
And it’s good to be alive

It’s good to be alive
I was lost and I was gone
I was almost dead inside
You and me against the world
It’s a beautiful night
It’s good to be alive

It’s beautiful night
Yeah, it’s all right
It’s good to be alive

This life could almost kill ya
When you’re trying to survive
It’s good to be here with ya
It’s good to be alive

It’s good to be alive
It’s good to be alive
It’s good to be alive
It’s good to be alive
It’s good to be alive

And it’s good to be alive
It’s good to be alive
I was lost and I was gone
I was almost dead inside
You and me against the world
It’s a beautiful night
It’s good to be alive

It’s beautiful night
Yeah, it’s all right
It’s good to be alive


 
 

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Hope Stays [Poem]



I’ve been reading blogs tonight under the Suicide category and felt some survivors needed to hear these words. Praying for your peace at this difficult time my fellow warrior.

hope stays


 
 

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When you feel like God isn’t listening… [Image]



teacher remains quiet during the test_001


 

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My Season of Winter



I posted recently about seasons of life. We all have them in our lives. Just like the earth has seasons, we go through a Spring, Summer, Fall, and a Winter in our relationships, jobs, interests, and hobbies.

I’ve been trapped in winter.

no_mans_land

No Man’s Land – World War I

I’ve felt like this for the past several months. Just disheartened, unmotivated, and overwhelmed. The fog of war as I call it. That bleak place of a mental health No Man’s Land. Shell shocked. Gassed. Disoriented. Just going through the “e(xtra hard)-motions” of life that seem to be so forced.

Read the rest of this entry »

 

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Overwhelmed



10689943_10203563849230424_8922735347976438587_n

Yeah, I’m feeling it. I’m feeling the burn baby.

Burned out. Overwhelmed. Weighed down.

See that picture above? Just ready to disappear with your next mouse scroll down? That paints it perfectly.

Traveling through a dark valley of semi-hopelessness littered with feelings of despair.

A quagmire. Something like a cement cesspool that slowly solidifies with each step I make. It seems like each step is half the stride of the previous. So even though I’m moving forward, I will never reach the place I want or need to be.

How often do you feel like this?

I’ve been struggling to bring myself to write positive posts for my readers. No matter how hard I try, it ain’t happening. A month ago I was posting several times a day.

Now I’m finding it hard to get the motivation up to write at all. Even though I know there is a reader out there struggling with real thoughts of brokenness, pain, hurt, and their reality.

I don’t like to concentrate on the negatives of my depression. Of dealing with my Specter. I want this page to be real for my readers, but I also want it to provide hope. With a balance of reality I want it to bring my readers up, not down.

So this is where I’m going to let my vulnerability speak. This is one of those times when my talk is going to walk.

I’m going to write through this.

I’m going to forgive myself.

I’m going to offer myself grace, just like the Lord has shown me His Grace.

I’m going to remind myself that I’m perfectly imperfect, and that’s perfectly okay.

Thank you for bearing with me and for your support through this rough stuff we all experience for a time.

Maybe now would be a good time for us to all reach out to someone we haven’t said hi to in a while. Someone whom we know is hurting and needs another to reach out and show they care.

Can we do that before our day is out?

I’m going to challenge myself to do that. If you have the strength, will you join me? Your time may be another day and that is perfectly okay. But do it when you find the strength. Someone’s life could be depending on your call.

-Chris

 

 

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“Hopeless”, Breaking Benjamin [Video with Lyrics]


What song helps you relate to, or express your mental condition?

I made reference to this video in a post that told my story of dealing with a confusing life of clinical depression and culminated in my attempt to end my life.

“There’s nothing left inside, but I am wide awake.”

Thank you for taking the time to read these few words as well as the lyrics. Will you post the song that embodies your mental condition? Thank you for your courage in doing so.

May you find peace through your valley.

-Chris

 
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Posted by on 03/05/2015 in Videos

 

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“Your Betrayal”, Bullet for My Valentine [Lyrics]

“Your Betrayal”, Bullet for My Valentine [Lyrics]

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Posted by on 03/01/2015 in Lyrics

 

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Where is YOUR happy place?


Hi folks. Thank you for stopping by for a few moments.

We all have them. That space that offers us a pause button in our push button life movie. A sort of solitude we slip away to from our stormy waters. A retreat from the catacombs of depression. Though our Specter still latches into us, riding us wherever we go, we can still go to this place and feel…“better”?

Read the rest of this entry »

 
 

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