Depression and the Musician (Part 2)

Back in 2007 I wrote about this subject. You can read that post here.

Since then there has been, what seems to me, an increasing willingness of people – I’m thinking here of famous people in the entertainment industry of sports – to “come out” and discuss their experience with depression and it’s insidious sister, anxiety. A lot has changed and these people, advantaged as they might be by their fame and wealth, have nevertheless to be applauded for candour and for exposing their personal vulnerability. Whoever they are and where they come from – it’s not easy.

15 years have passed since I wrote that earlier post and while my experience has evolved, the generality of the experience has not changed: it’s still a challenge. Hitherto, I was able to lean my experience of it as offering a particular way to channel an aspect of my creativity. And maybe, to a certain extent, that had utility. I would certainly not have been able to express myself in song or in music in the way that I did without that experience. Whether it was worth it, or not, is perhaps for others to say.

As I get older, though, I become aware that I’m less able to mitigate against, or compensate for, the symptoms of depression and anxiety with creative drive. I think that’s because simply getting older and whatever powers of creativity I did have are diminishing. I’m not ashamed of this although, of course, I regret it and it makes me frustrated. But I’ll keep on keeping on. As they say. Having reduced powers doesn’t mean I have none left. There are still chords to be played and tunes to be found. I’m certain I’ll still stumble across one or two.

One thing about “depression” is that it’s a relative concept. It entails a previous state. And therefore a future state. A “before” and an “after”. It describes a dip.

I’ll revisit this maybe in 2037. I will, somehow, have been “cured” by then.






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