Yesterday, one of America’s comedic icons died, presumably from depression. I’m sure you’ve all heard of it by now. Not only about Robin Williams’ death, but about depression itself. If reports are correct, this true and tragic disease has murdered someone who made us laugh and cry with his life’s work. He seemed so happy in his ways of manic humor, so devoted to his craft, so lively.
But many of us know that depression allows you to smile, if only to cover the sick turmoil its creating within. It may be asked why such a successful man, beloved by millions, would take his life. Some would say, “It goes to show that fame and fortune can’t satisfy anyone for long.” But Robin Williams was talented, and seemed to truly love his talent and used it as much as he could. I don’t think he was an actor or comedian for the money, but because he knew what he was good at, and he went for it. That’s an honorable and brave thing, especially for someone with depression.
I don’t know the inside details of Williams’ life, and no one will ever know the extent of his heart, and what thoughts littered his mind. I do know that if depression was the cause of his death, its likely that even if he could have seen the result of mourning millions, the gigantic waves of adoring comments across social media and the celebrity world, they wouldn’t have changed his mind. Perhaps they would have touched him, caused him to debate internally. However, depression is a disease that blinds our everything from reason, reality, and the deep sensations of love. He may have thought that no one really loved him, that all the fan responses were lies.
He really is no different from us. He and we are human, and humans face disease. He had a disease. We all have a disease of some sort. And we all need love to help our spirits survive the physical.
You are loved unconditionally, not by all, but by some, and that is enough. Take that love and give it to yourself. Love yourself. If you think you can’t, don’t surrender to the disease, even if surrender makes more sense.