There’s an old saying, “a stranger is just a friend you haven’t met yet.”
Umm…no. Just no.
That is not a saying I can get behind. A stranger is a problem…and a talkative & friendly stranger is a danger.
Yay for cynical misanthropy….?
That being said, I do have friends. I have very good friends. I have friends that even the lapsed-Christian in me is willing to call a “blessing.” I have friends without whom I would, quite honestly — and quite literally — be dead.
As anyone who has struggled with depression can attest, there is always that quiet, demanding urge to hide away, to be “left alone.” When things go well-and-truly downhill, that urge can see you go days, or even weeks, without contact. You ignore the phone…you ignore the texts…you ignore the emails…
It doesn’t matter who’s trying to get hold of you, your mind tells you that any contact can only be worse…
I live in the freaking mountains, well outside of any real town or civilization. I live where I can far-too-easily hide in the backcountry, in the isolation and loneliness that that little siren in my mind so croons about…
But I’m blessed with friends who won’t let that isolation stand, won’t let me fall into that trap. Friends who insist on contact and communication and interaction, friends who won’t leave me the fuck alone…
Friends who have, more than once, saved me.
I wrote once before about holding on, about my need for those who can and will help me in spite of me. I’m not alone…and that means everything. As alone as life, and problems, can make me feel…I’m not alone.
And that’s why I’m still here to type this.
This isn’t so much a blog post as it is a thank-you note, a letter to those who have helped me to hold on. To my family, to Don and Morgan, to Jonathon and Angela, to Billy, to Matt and Bill and Jason and Brent … to all those who have helped me to hold on, who have helped me to stay rooted in this world, all I have to give are my thanks.
I owe you my life.
To everyone else, I can only say this: there is someone in your life hurting, someone desperate and afraid and alone. Find them. Find them and help them. You can’t make them “better,” you can’t “fix” them, but you can help them to stay rooted…you can help them to remember that they are not alone.
Whether it be trauma or depression or some other so-called “fault,” I don’t care what is the root of their problem, they need your help, they need your support…they need YOU.
No one deserves to live without hope or love, no one deserves to sit on a branch with a rope around their neck…
Musical Addendum — I’m posting below a song I have talked about before…the reason why should speak for itself: