A Soul’s Journey – Week 6

“You’ve Lost that Loving Feeling…..”

Battling depression is never going to be an easy one.

I know because I have experienced it. When I was diagnosed way back in 1999, I was in complete denial. I felt like a complete failure and I didn’t want anyone to know and if I heard anyone had been discussing it I was furious! The Doctor said she thought it had been undiagnosed and that I had been experiencing it for a lot longer.

I believe I did have depression the first time when I was a teenager.

I locked myself in my room for about two years from around the age of 14 to 16.

Two things pulled me out of this dark place. My friends and U2.

I sat in my room and listened to U2 on high rotation – that would become the sound track to my life and get me through some of my darkest hours and I would paint.

Creating and painting was my saviour. I listened to T-Rex, The Smiths, Tom Petty, Cat Stevens and copious amounts of U2. My room from floor to ceiling was covered, every inch of it with four young, handsome Irishmen. I remember my friends dad, Andrew returning home from a year living in NYC armed with gifts from the Big Apple. He knew me too well.

He gave me a book, full of A2 posters, a discography and a very rare vinyl record he found in Soho. It was one of U2’s first recordings, “Driving To Midnight Mass In Dublin On Christmas Eve”. It’s almost as bad as the 1975’s, “I like it When You Sleep For You Are So Beautiful Yet So Unaware of It”. Anyway long and interesting album titles aside, I was in heaven. My shrine was complete. No wall remained uncovered and I could just disappear to another world when I entered my bedroom.

I remember not going out, being content with my own company and painting to my heart’s content. It wasn’t until one night I remember my friends ringing, on the landline, and telling me they were coming to pick me up whether I liked it or not. I was so unimpressed but come they did. From memory Jo had a cream Torana, or something like that. She always carried an Alpine Light in her left hand and would flick the flicker on, fag in hand. Karen, Giorge, and Liney came to get me. We would have been just 16. The Toole’s must have been away or maybe they were drinking white wine with The Killey’s in the front room, all I remember is walking into a room were I was greeted by another George, larger than life and happy as Larry and Toby and probably Paul, maybe Andrew and Simon. It was too much but I did my best to look interested.

It wasn’t until they put me up on the arm of the couch all knelt down in front of me and in their finest voices sang “You’ve Lost That Loving Feeling”. It wasn’t Maverick or Goose but it was heartfelt and the most moving moment of my life. I wonder as I write this whether any of them would remember that night.

I do.

Like it was yesterday.

As at that very moment I knew I was going to be ok.

I had amazing friends and their love and support radiated from their hearts and their voices, not quite as good as mine but ok none the less.

So what sets teenage angst and depression apart???