I sometimes wonder if the world realizes just how much art, music and poetry is lost to us simply because the world did not deem the creator of those things worthy of notice. As I mentioned in my post, “DOUBLE SIDED BLADE”, the very thing that sets me apart from society, my illnesses, also seems to be the source of my talents, for I can neither draw nor write on the rare occasions when I am “stable”. And this has also been true of the few of my contacts who had talents that were willing to admit that they suffered emotional illnesses.
But what really shocked me is that many of them told me that they do just as I do-use the talents to help them deal with the symptoms of their illnesses.
For me, when the symptoms are riding me the hardest, I have found that by working on a painting-whether “real world” or on the computer-or writing, I can lose myself for a little while. Working with those projects almost seems to build a wall between myself and the symptoms the more involved I get with whatever project I am currently working on. And the ones that I have talked to have told me it is that way with them also.
When I first began posting the truth about Publish America, I had created a video and posted it on YouTube. I received seven response to that video…
Four of them were bi-polar, and one of those was also paranoid schizophrenic and very nearly a total recluse, just as I am.
Well, every now and then that fact pops into my head, and it makes me wonder how many others are there out there who suffer emotional or mental illnesses that sit, hour after hour, day after day, creating works of art, music, or poetry…works that will never be seen, heard, or read…
Simply because of the stigma attached to mental and emotional illnesses and the fear of rejection or ridicule.
The simple truth is that society absolutely has no room for anything that does not fit its concept of what is acceptable.
And that goes not only for mental or emotional illness, it also goes for physical handicaps or what society considers to be “imperfections”, such as those, like myself, by my own admission, who are overweight, plain in appearance, or have speech problems or physical imperfections that set us outside “the accepted norm”.
I have seen videos on YouTube that showed people that had physical deformities or were plain or sometimes unusual in their appearance, and I have seen the hateful, derogatory comments posted on those videos, both on the videos themselves and in the comments sections, and it nearly brings me to tears.
It makes me wonder how those that take such delight in mocking those of us who do not fit their ideas of what is beautiful, intelligent, or worthy of consideration and respect would feel if the tables were reversed and it were they who were on those videos, if it were their souls gazing through the eyes of those they mock, ridicule and revile.
I wonder where their mockery and hurtful words would be then.
Those of us who are victims of an emotional or mental illness, a physical deformity or imperfection are human just as much as those how mock, revile, and yes, in many cases, abuse us. We have hopes and dreams, we have disappointments and fears, and we have feelings. We have hearts that break when our fellowman mocks us and reviles us with hurtful comments, we also feel joy fill those same hearts when someone see’s beyond the shell to the soul that dwells within.
I composed this verse sometime back, when I wrote my first two books, but it sums up what I have been stating.
WE HAVE FEELINGS TOO
WHEN YOU’VE GOT A MENTAL ILLNESS
YOUR MIND ISN’T QUITE RIGHT.
UNQUIET THOUGHTS SHIFT AND MILL AROUND
EVERY DAY AND NIGHT.
YOU VIEW THE WORLD QUITE DIFFERENTLY
YOU SEE A WIDER VIEW
THAN ‘NORMAL’ FOLK WITH THEIR BUSY LIVES
TAKE THE TIME TO DO.
SOMETIME S YOU’RE UP AND HYPER
FILLED WITH GREAT JOY OR WRATH
OTHER TIMES YOUR EMOTIONS
TAKE A SADDER PATH.
TO ‘NORMAL’ FOLKS OUR DIFFERENCE S
BRING OUT MISUNDERSTANDING AND FEAR
BECAUSE THEY DO NOT UNDERSTAND US
THEY SELDOM WANT US NEAR.
BUT THIS BI-POLAR AUTHOR
IS STANDING UP TO SAY
WE REALLY AREN’T THAT DIFFERENT
SO PLEASE DON’T TURN AWAY.
YES, WE ALL HAVE A PROBLEM
BUT THEN SO DO SOME OF YOU
WE ALL HAVE TO REST AT NIGHT
WHEN EACH DAY IS THROUGH.
WE ALL HAVE DISAPPOINTMENT S
AND JOYS THROUGHOUT THIS LIFE
WE ALL CHEER UP WHEN TIMES ARE GOOD
AND WEEP WHEN THEY’RE FILLED WITH STRIFE.
WE ALL HAVE HOPES AND DREAMS
AND KNOW THE DISAPPOINTMENT S LIFE
WE EXPERIENCE EMOTIONS JUST LIKE YOU
AND CAN OFTEN BE QUITE GOOD FRIENDS.
‘ENHANCED’ IS WHAT THEY CALL US
(A TERM THAT’S SOFTLY SPOKE)
IT’S JUST A ‘POLITE’ WAY OF SAYING
WE’RE DIFFERENT THAN OTHER FOLK.
SO IF YOU MEET SOMEONE WHO IS ‘ENHANCED’
DON’T TREAT THEM CRUEL AND BAD
TREAT THEM KINDLY, FOR THEY MIGHT SOMEDAY BE
THE BEST FRIEND YOU’VE EVER HAD.
And I think that pretty much says it all.