Renée de Nève Photography Renée de Nève Photography

Journal

November 27th, 2021

November 25th, 2021

November 24th, 2021

November 23rd, 2021

I am ill. Physically ill. I haven’t been this ill since the summer and not this bad since my first covid vaccination. It has been an awful long time that I have been ill in winter time and although it’s not great timing, it’s come at a time when I have really wanted to push myself against the winter blues. To be ahead and to stay ahead. Given I haven’t got much energy to do much about anything, I am just laying there and trying to get the body to recover. I so very rarely order food but I had to this time. Perhaps not the healthiest way out but feel a bit happy I know that I at least have my appetite back. This week had really seen me feel inspired to make a difference in this world and wrote some ideas down on what that entails.

November 21st, 2021

Interesting question. One that I ask in many different ways, but not like this. Perhaps we ought to ask more what is it that we are feeling?

November 19th, 2021

Depression is the invisible black hole inside of you, waiting for it’s energy to suck up the sunshine bit by bit from the inside. 

Subtle or with vengeance. It leaps in and defeats every bit of strength. Crushing it’s almighty will. Bulldozing the sun rays and colours. Suppressing any emotions, be it good or bad. Amplifying the insecure voices, making it unbearable to repeatedly feel nothing. Be nothing. Feeling worthless. Clouds of doubt seeping in from everywhere. 

There is sadness and there is depression. The depression is sadness compressed. Compressed into nothing but shame and stillness. Like a virus invading the body, depression is the virus for the mind. There is no past or future but just the presence. The empty presence. An invisible prison, that wraps you into an invisible confined space with no exit signs to be seen. You cannot escape, you cannot fathom why. You are trapped. Slowly taking every bit of sunshine and rainbow in its path. There is no feeling of love. No happiness. No warmth. No hope. No will. No fight. Just you and the mind being invaded by thoughts, intruding the peaceful garden you worked hard to create. 


Having been confronted with grief again recently, my concerns were mostly not about overcoming the acuteness of grief but whether or not I would spiral into a phase of depression and angst. What many people did not know, is that just over a year ago, I really got depressed. I suffered. But I suffered of and with nothingness. After a strenuous year that was so full of anxiety, loss, stress, tears, love, joy and new beginnings, I for the first time had time to myself. And it did not serve me well at the time. From everything to absolutely nothing. And it was not like it was nothing, but that’s how my deeper self felt. Not a lot. No desire, no joy, no spark, no colour and on top of that I just cried and felt so worthless and like a failure. I have days that appear here or there with this sort of feeling and as quickly as it comes, it goes. But this did not go away. Some days were better than others. But on no day, did I feel worthy, no day did I truly feel content, no day where I felt any sort of motivation or desire to get up. And so I didn’t and when I did, it was obligatory. This depression lasted for a good 5-6 months and was the hardest time for me. It was the time I really truly grieved. It was the time that endless tears streamed down my face. It was the time that every emotional pain was just as sharp and intense as physical pain. When I did not cry, I just lay there and wishing for the time to pass quicker so I could get better, that the time was needed but I knew somewhere, someday it would get better but I felt nowhere near it. I just wanted for time to go faster. I couldn’t bare this time. I barely lived. Food had no taste and as indifferent to me as it gets. I could no be around family because I felt such a degree of shame and failure and felt so out of place. I could not be around humans. But I did not want to be alone. In the midst of this, I was not aware of how badly I was depressed. Or more so the longevity. I just thought one day It would stop. Like it usually does. When my off day is followed by magic and rainbows. But that day never really came. But I remember the day it got better. This day gave me hope. It gave me a sense of love and appreciation. It was the first time I felt so apprecitative of the help I had received. It took me almost four months to go and see the Dr.  I had never ever sat somewhere in a medical setting where my tears were about to be unleashed. But I really tried to contain my tears. In hindsight, maybe I should have just let go, because moments of emotional release are so important but I don’t know. I just couldn’t. 

Now some months I have spent building the foundations again, and really knowing the difference between sadness, grief and depression, I just appreciate  that I feel things. Even the sad moments, are in some ways beautiful moments because I am sad. But I feel it and I know feeling teary and sad is also completely normal. But in these moments, I know there is no shame or sense of failure. That my belief, this too shall pass, will lead me to moments when life can really spring into life. But even when I am sad, I can smile and see that beautiful sunset and know life is hard sometimes, but sometimes it is so simple and full of magic. That is not depression and when I feel this, I am just thankful I can cry and smile and feel good or bad, but not be compelled with nothingness or a sense of shame. 

November 17th, 2021

November 16th, 2021

November 15th, 2021

Citizen: “Some years there exists a wanting to escape…”

BY CLAUDIA RANKINE




Some years there exists a wanting to escape—

you, floating above your certain ache—  

still the ache coexists.

Call that the immanent you—



You are you even before you

grow into understanding you

are not anyone, worthless,

not worth you.

Even as your own weight insists
you are here, fighting off
the weight of nonexistence.



And still this life parts your lids, you see
you seeing your extending hand

as a falling wave—

/

I they he she we you turn
only to discover
the encounter

to be alien to this place.

Wait.



The patience is in the living. Time opens out to you.

The opening, between you and you, occupied,
zoned for an encounter,

given the histories of you and you—

And always, who is this you?


The start of you, each day,
a presence already—

Hey you—

/

Slipping down burying the you buried within. You are
everywhere and you are nowhere in the day.

The outside comes in—

Then you, hey you—


Overheard in the moonlight.

Overcome in the moonlight.


Soon you are sitting around, publicly listening, when you
hear this—what happens to you doesn’t belong to you,
only half concerns you He is speaking of the legionnaires
in Claire Denis’s film Beau Travail and you are pulled back
into the body of you receiving the nothing gaze—

The world out there insisting on this only half concerns
you. What happens to you doesn’t belong to you, only half
concerns you. It’s not yours. Not yours only.

/

And still a world begins its furious erasure—

Who do you think you are, saying I to me?

You nothing.

You nobody.

You.



A body in the world drowns in it—

Hey you—


All our fevered history won’t instill insight,
won’t turn a body conscious,
won’t make that look
in the eyes say yes, though there is nothing

to solve

even as each moment is an answer.

/

Don’t say I if it means so little,
holds the little forming no one.

You are not sick, you are injured—

you ache for the rest of life.



How to care for the injured body,

the kind of body that can’t hold
the content it is living?

And where is the safest place when that place
must be someplace other than in the body?



Even now your voice entangles this mouth
whose words are here as pulse, strumming
shut out, shut in, shut up—

You cannot say—

A body translates its you—

you there, hey you

/

even as it loses the location of its mouth.



When you lay your body in the body
entered as if skin and bone were public places,

when you lay your body in the body
entered as if you’re the ground you walk on,

you know no memory should live
in these memories

becoming the body of you.


You slow all existence down with your call
detectable only as sky. The night’s yawn
absorbs you as you lie down at the wrong angle

to the sun ready already to let go of your hand.



Wait with me
though the waiting, wait up,
might take until nothing whatsoever was done.

/

To be left, not alone, the only wish—

to call you out, to call out you.


Who shouted, you? You

shouted you, you the murmur in the air, you sometimessounding like you, you sometimes saying you,

go nowhere,

be no one but you first—

Nobody notices, only you’ve known,

you’re not sick, not crazy,
not angry, not sad—

It’s just this, you’re injured.

/

Everything shaded everything darkened everything
shadowed

is the stripped is the struck—

is the trace
is the aftertaste.



I they he she we you were too concluded yesterday to
know whatever was done could also be done, was also
done, was never done—



The worst injury is feeling you don’t belong so much

to you—



November 14th, 2021

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