I created this picture in what I call a manic-high, negative state. I tried to describe some of the millions of things running through my mind at one time and how I struggle to juggle them.
Some of the stronger issues I have added are when I get fixated on death, represented by the skull – this has been a fixation I have had for as far back as I can remember. The young boy sat with his head in his hands represents the feeling of isolation & loneliness I get in these states & this can last for hours at a time.
The digital brain shows the logical & robotic way my brain works & I put the NHS in the centre to show the constant battle for help I have with some of the staff, getting them to fully understand & how that is always on my mind. This also represents how I can come across very cold & blunt due to feeling flat & empty – I also think this is a reason people think I am strong because I can say how I feel due to detachment of feelings.
The image of the broken family & dynamics within that show how it has a daily impact on my life something I am now trying to distance myself from to break habits. The word PAIN is blurred due to the merging of feelings that come with it – although I feel flat I have a deep feeling of anxiety as if I have been told that someone close has died!
The theatre masks I added to show how I have learned to mask my problems & issues from an early age & only now am I learning to drop the mask to some degree through recent therapy with an amazing Psychologist. The clock is there to show how this can feel like it is endless – again, time is something I have had issues with since I was a young boy! Trying to grasp the concept of time creates massive anxiety for me & can make me ill – I am constantly thinking how can i do things faster or more efficiently? Maybe that has something to do with that?
Balance is a big issue that I have – what is right & what is wrong? What we are taught & what is imbedded in ourselves, which Is why I added the Halo & devil horns plus the Yin & Yang symbol. The medication I put in between the good & bad struggle is to show how it can stop me from doing harm to myself when in these states (which I have in the past), the diazepam I am prescribed just takes the edge off me feeling like I am slipping into insanity & along with other coping strategies I have learned to help me deal with it.
Within the eye socket of the skull there is a silhouette of man falling which I put in to show how I can feel at the time, that it wont stop & is endless. The binary numbers are again to represent the emotionless robotic state in which I feel I think. I added the eye to show how I often feel myself staring motionless for periods of time due to me trying to analyse what I am thinking & feel I go into a trance. The lion roaring is when I feel like there is a sea of emotions screaming to get out but stay dormant. I put 1979 (the year I was born) in chains as in this state I can feel like I wish I hadn’t been born.
I wouldn’t normally try to explain in writing the depth of such a complex image I have created, something that holds so much meaning, but I wanted to try this as an exercise to see if it would help! I feel very anxious putting it into words but also more stressed that each small sentence doesn’t show the severity & complexity of the feelings I go through having these episodes.
I hope that by ‘trying’ to put my feelings onto a digital image & then into words this may help someone out there who goes through experiences like this, hopefully lets them know that they are not alone.