Last night after dinner I watched a movie (“Delicacy,” a French film starring one of my favorite actors, Audrey Tautou) when a thunderstorm rolled through my area. The film ended at dusk and with the dreary mood outside I decided to turn the lights out and throw on a depressing black metal album. I haven’t done something like that in a while and I wanted to take advantage of the mood while I could. I played one that I bought recently and haven’t had a chance to listen to. It was called “The Tenth Sub Level Of Suicide” and was by the band Leviathan. It is one of the bleakest, coldest albums that I have heard in a while and fit the mood I was looking for perfectly. The vocals were over-processed but otherwise I recommend picking this one up. I won’t go into a full review here as that’s what my metal blog is for. (Oh, yeah, I have a metal blog, don’t I?)
About two years ago I was looking primarily for music like this. I suffered through depression at the time and with my obsession over atmosphere depressing music was what I was looking for. While this album would have fit the bill I didn’t get that feeling last night. For one thing I’m not depressed anymore. For another I’m trying to start converting self-pity into self-reliance. That’s not to say that before I didn’t know how to dress myself or depended on my relatives to buy me groceries. What I mean is that I spent more time sulking than trying to get things done. No matter how many times I tried talking myself into being productive at most I had creative bursts only to find them fizzle out amongst lethargy and excuses. You can even look back to blog posts that I wrote to try and inspire myself.
The difference now is that I no longer need the motivation. That’s not what this post is about. I’m merely describing how I was able to take the time and reflect last night on these thoughts. There was something about the power of the mood I created for myself that made me realize that I’m not depressed anymore. I wish I could describe the change I felt in myself but I’m not sure that I have the right words right now. But even if the resolutions I made were in a sense formless they were there. Perhaps even “resolution” is too strong a word. I didn’t feel that I needed to make a concentrated effort in my endeavours. In fact the biggest difference now is that I feel that I don’t have to push myself to push myself. I’m there now. I’m in the mindset to expand my mental capabilities and create.
Those are two things that I keep forgetting are connected: the reading of books helps me as a writer while the writing makes me appreciate and enjoy the books I read. The same goes for listening to music and being a musician. But the aspiration to better myself doesn’t stop there. Learning a new piece of music on classical guitar, for example, works not only to include another work in my repertoire but also as a mental exercise. It is proven that when we work hard at learning something new we strengthen our minds.
Another thing that came to mind last night was how I have tended to restrain myself all the time when I didn’t need to. If I need to do something from now on I’ll do it. If I’m hungry I’ll eat; previously I made a concentrated effort to schedule my meals and snacks in order to spread them out logically across the day. Meanwhile I’m starving and underweight. If I want to talk to somebody I find attractive, I’ll no longer use the excuse of “I don’t have anything to say.” Instead, I’ll think of something.
Somehow I think a lot of this also relates to the recurring pain in my left foot. I think that at some point I did injure it. But over time I have to wonder if some of it wasn’t psychological. It’s time to move on from that pain that I used to distract myself. Maybe there is something in the methods of Dr. John Sarno we invent these pains to distract ourselves from confronting something about ourselves that we don’t like.