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and come out of the shadows.  This is my first diary.  I've been lurking in the shadows, posting a comment here and there, but afraid to post an original diary.  But with all the people coming forward in the wake of the death of Robin Williams, a damn has burst.  I've been inspired by ericfolkerth, with his diary "after the laughter, and, especially the diary of BoiseBlue, challenging us to stand up.  As a political junkie, my comments have mostly been confined to politics, but something much deeper compelled me to post this first diary: our basic humanity.  My own experience that seems to be reflected in the brave posts of those who are taking this occasion to brave a critical world to conquer our own fears and reach out to others who feel so deeply, and help the world understand what we feel, see and experience.  follow me over the (I"ve always imagined how I would describe it, lol)  the little orange piece of calligraphy.

To all those brave souls who have weighed in, who have come out of the shadows in the light of our brother's passing of this life into the next, we are of the same tribe.  Those of us in this tribe know that it is a faustian bargain: the intelligent and creativity goes hand in hand with the depression.  It is all the same cloth.  It is inseparable.  I'm sure I'm not the only one who has observed this.  We could not will the depression to go away without departing from what makes us who we are.  We can only hope to mange it.  I've thought long and hard about this myself.  I've asked myself: would I be willing to give up my soul, give up my passion, give us who I am if it meant I could be free of this?  And my answer is no.  It is a part of who we are as much as breathing.  The same thing that makes us who we are: intelligent, creative, perceptive; is the source of our inner torment.  We are all of those things because we absorb so much of the world around us.  We see and feel things differently and so much more intensely than others.  As painful as it is, yes to the point of sometimes being willing to do anything to shut it off, if just for a moment, even the drastic act of ending this particular life as we know it: I'm not willing to give that up.  The way I see it, I would cease to live either way.  I would not be who I am.  This is the first time I have weighed in on this here.  I have refrained from doing so for fear someone I know would figure out who I am, and that it would harm my reputation and professional ambitions.  But the passing of Robin Williams, to whom I have always felt a deep connection, has moved me out of my fear.  We must be our authentic selves.  This is the first step to rising above the stigma and ignorance that surrounds this.  You are deeply loved.  I love you for coming out and challenging us.  I wish I could tell Robin how much I love him and how much he inspired me.  Our deepest fear is that we are not loved, that others look at us with contempt.  That is what is so great about the forum we have here.  We no longer need to feel alone.  We must come out, and take this opportunity to do so.  We never need to feel like we are alone.  We can support each other, love each other, reach out to each other.  I truly believe we are not some aberration, but an emerging consciousness.  Growing pains, if your will.  Yes, there is pain.  It is the price for being truly alive.  We will get through it together.  God bless you for your courage.

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