‘Here I am with all my insecurities, all my imperfections, crying out to a world that just won’t listen’
Someone recently told me that ‘I’ve changed.’ The comment was meant in jest; the individual in question was referencing the self-destructive Chris Nicholas of days gone by who was so bitterly angry that he’d cut off his nose to spite his face. Delivered by an old acquaintance with a cheeky smirk and a chink of beer glasses, they never could have imagined just how devastating their words would be. I’ve been feeling flat lately and the comment hit a lot closer to home than intended. In the days that followed I spent a great deal of time mulling over the idea in my head. I asked myself over and over if I have changed, and if so when this metamorphosis took place.
So have I?
You better believe I have. You only have to take a look at this site to see the shift.
In July 2012 I started this site as a means of confronting the mounting depression that had overtaken my existence. I was struggling with family illness, low self-esteem, being broke and away from those that I loved. So I wrote shamelessly; cutting open my chest and offering the small audience who read my first few posts a piece of my heart. From there I transitioned into an arrogant child who preached my narcissism and willingness to maim and self-destruct. I became wayward in what I was trying to achieve and my writing suffered greatly as a result. For the longest of times I was stuck in a cycle of frustration and self-deceit. Recently however, I’ve managed to get my shit together, produce some better quality work and actually start to make a name for myself in this industry.
I’ve come a long way from the teenager who struggled so much with his English studies that his parents forced him to undergo tutoring. And even further from the lost soul who cried out to the world for help on July 17th 2012. But no matter how far I reach, how much I achieve, or how wonderful my life is, I will forever have to live with my insecurities and imperfections; namely depression. For a long time I tried to deny this. I tried to tell myself that I had overcome the demons inside my mind and that I was cured. I mistook my arrogance and aggression as overcoming my illness rather than recognizing that it was just another phase of self-loathing. I foolishly thought that if I didn’t feel down anymore I was normal once again. But there is no such thing as normal.
The truth is that it’s alright to not be OK.
The shift in this site’s content, my success as an author, and my life in general came when I began to accept that I will never be normal. I will always have a flaw in the biological makeup of my brain that makes me feel insecure or down at times. But that flaw is chemistry, not character. No one should ever feel ashamed about suffering from depression or mental health. It takes so much bravery and strength to stand up and tell the world that you need help, and I have nothing but the utmost respect for anyone courageous enough to do so.
I’m not OK, I never will be. But it’s my insecurities and imperfections are what make my life so beautiful and worth living. It’s through embracing these weaknesses (and I say the word loosely) that I am able to write and thus reach out and connect with you the reader. No one is infallible, no one is perfect, and at some point in our lives we all feel low. I’ve just been fortunate enough to learn how to use this site to turn those negative thoughts into something greater than I.
The person who told me that I have changed did so because I told them that Midas had been put into print. Whenever I tell people about my proudest achievement to date they inevitably do the same thing. They congratulate me for the success, purse their lips and ask ‘do you mind if I ask how much money you’re making from it?’
While I’d love to tell them that since the book was released in February I have become a millionaire it simply isn’t the case. I’ve sold a few copies (hopefully enough to please Meizius Publishing) but financial gain doesn’t mean a thing to me at this point in my writing career. Right now I just want to reach out and connect with readers so that once they put complete my novel, or finish reading my posts they are grateful for the experience we have shared together. While in my days of anger and frustration I used to brag about how much money I could make when I became published and tried to base my emotions on fiscal gain, the truth is that I’m not doing this to become a millionaire.
I’m doing this because I, Chris Nicholas am a depressive person who has the ability to see both great beauty and despair in the world around me. I’m doing this because I want to share my experiences and my love with readers. And I’m doing this because through writing I have learned that it’s perfectly normal to feel fractured, broken, down or low. I have learned that it’s alright to not be OK.
So after a great deal of thought I’ve decided that I have changed. But I’ve done so for the better. The boy I was three years ago when Renegade Press isn’t shit compared to the man I am today. I am Chris Nicholas; writer, man wolf and world eater. I’m not perfect and I never will be. But that’s what makes what I do so damn beautiful.
18 thoughts on “I”
Honest and lucid, Chris. There’ll always be ups and downs but it looks like the general trend is up, so keep going!
I’m going to start putting together a book of awesome quotes that I glean from your posts! As a sufferer of PTSD, this post resonates with me at several levels. I marvel at your outlook on life, and your own body of work, and I know (based on the steady sales Midas is enjoying) that the fiscal gain will come in time. Right now, be proud of your accomplishment…I know I am!
You’re one hell of a writer! And the beauty of your work lies in its imperfectioness. Keep up the work! We’re always here to cheer you! ^-^
I have suffered with depression and bipolar disorder for a great number of years. I discovered alcohol and marijuana at age eighteen. Unfortunately, I was wasted nearly every day for thirty-seven years. Once I put down the drugs and booze, I discovered my underlying mental health disease and was able to begin treatment. Things have gotten much better. I understand what you’re saying in your post. I have to say this, though. I now have a relationship with Jesus Christ. It’s been instrumental in my being able to renew my mind. I still take daily medication for depression and anxiety, but I have a peace that I’ve never known before. I hope you don’t mind that I shared this experience with you. It has been the key to my feeling there is light at the end of the tunnel.
Your honesty is wonderful. Sounds like you got inside my head, but wrote down my conflicts and feelings with so much more eloquence. Thank you.
Good for you. Life is always going to throw us a curve ball. It’s how we react to those curve balls that shapes our destiny.
Thank you for liking “The Downward Spiral of Gift Giving” and “Happy April Fool’s Day.” I am glad to hear that you have been able to turn your life around for the better. 🙂 I agree with you. Instead of letting our insecurities and imperfections take over our lives, we should learn from them and find a positive outlet for them.
I also agree with you that depression is nothing to be ashamed of. Sometimes people do need some outside help to cope with feelings of depression, and it is sad that some people wait until it is too late to get help. I am thinking about what happened to the late actor and comedian Robin Williams. After battling depression for many years, he became so overwhelmed by it that he committed suicide last year.
“…when I began to accept that I will never be normal. I will always have a flaw in the biological makeup of my brain that makes me feel insecure or down at times. But that flaw is chemistry, not character. No one should ever feel ashamed about suffering from depression or mental health.”
Congratulations on your epiphany!
This is the first post that I read from your blog, and I’m totally hooked into it already.
And you may be suffering from depression, but you are a very strong person and honest to yourself. I’m confident you will achieve anything you pursue!
Have you found how boring life is without that one important challenge gnawing at you? I’m past the monetary gain game myself. I have yet to publish a book, but when I do, I just want some people to be interested enough to buy it.
Liking yourself is a hard thing to do. Our society is so hooked on perfection. I find that I’m fighting not to compare myself to others because I’m quite sure that is the only way to get to that place where I like me.
Beautiful writing. The words flow so effortlessly. My mind was ignited as I read.
Beautiful piece. I love your honesty, and I congratulate you on being where you are. None of us are perfect, and learning to live with our flaws, and our issues, is one of the greatest achievements in life.
Reblogged this on The Ugly Duckling's Life and commented:
After reading this post I felt so many emotions all at the same time, and all I can say to the author is ‘I am grateful for the experience we have shared together’.
Bravo, eloquently and humbly written, a lot of truth in there.
I have had depression my whole life. It’s created a different outlook on life for me, even as a small child. I knew my mother has depression and I knew other members in my family have depression. Depression is normal in our family and we are pretty tight because of it. It’s not a bad thing and often times I look at it as a good thing. I treasure so many things so much more then others do. I know my ticks so well, I know the exact moment when I’m going down, and let myself go down. I let myself restore the energy I lost somewhere.
I always feel that if people, like you, would stop looking at depression as this unknown monster in the dark and instead shoved it out into the light and said to people, “Look I’m pretty sure I need to hold your hand” or “Please for the love of everything I need a hug.” or just simple say, “I’m not okay right now.” Many would have a different outlook on depression and would have an easier time dealing with it.
I’m so happy I found your blog! I like your style 🙂
Thanks for sharing. I think its important for all of us to realise that we are flawed, also important to know that we are never alone.
I really liked your saying “The truth is that it’s alright to not be OK”. That sounds easier than to live it. Thank you.