This year has been a test of my strength + a lesson in whats important. I have always put my career before everything in my life. If I needed to do something often the people I love have suffered for it. In the beginning sometimes financially, now usually by taking the brunt of my stress, dealing with my absence, + feeling neglected. I feel like this might be why the chips have fallen in this particular fashion most recently.
I have suffered from severe depression since the age of 11 or 12. Soon followed by a diagnosis with panic disorder, later on generalized anxiety, + social anxiety. I experienced a 6 month long complete mental breakdown in 2008-2009 which left me more fragile than ever. Personally, I believe my soul is uncomfortable in a human body existing in this reality + therefore manifests in these types of human "diagnosis". I usually have a very clear winter/summer cycle. Winter I'm in full swing horror + summer I can get out + experience life again. This didn't happen this summer. I kept waiting for the weight to lift but summer grew warmer + I still had very little desire to do anything. I began to spiral downward. Everything that reminded me of being happy made me cry. I saw pictures of the ocean + it lead my to tears everytime. I thought a trip to Los Angeles would lift me up, but it only made things worse. It was a particularly disastrous trip ending a few friendships, physically being ill + took a toll on much more.
Now it's in the depths of winter + I'm still picking up the pieces. My life is not always how it looks in the public eye. I wanted to make this confession as a catharsis to myself but also maybe to help others. I am honest above all things + I never want to lie to my beautiful, supportive deamons + thats what I felt I was doing for a long time.
The Pain Project came as a result of all this. It was a truth I wanted to share. To show that no matter how successful, beautiful, loved, you are, things aren't always that perfect on the inside. My mental illness of spiritual illness has majorly impacted my career as well. I hae not been performing because I haven't had the motivation to keep up all my business relationships, try to forge new ones, nor practice my craft.
I want to let you all know that your messages + extreme outpouring of support in response to the release of The Pain Project has meant more to me than any of you will ever know. Here are some beautiful quotes from responses:
"such a beautiful powerful woman should not be so sad but even in sadness you are beautiful"
"to see you make the best of bad is inspiring and probably the most creative project I've seen"
"Sharing this side of yourself shows how brave you really are"
"This is beautiful. As someone who deals with suck illnesses I can't even imagine showing the world what I am at my weakest point."
And this particular quote came from a fellow Left Hand Path yogin who I feel understands the why of my illness more than anyone ever has from this quote:
"Goddess incarnate to men ov the world...
Every thing about a geisha life is life about art.
To be the absolute expression of feminine beauty.
To embrace it where ever it is, to breath it, speak it.
Leaving little trails and impressions on everyone that comes in contact
life is art at all costs.
When removed from the willow world the geisha is not understood not appreciated and seemingly useless to the the machine ov society.
When not in the role ov geisha, the geisha is a not a cog in the machine.
No longer a cog, the artist is devoured by the machine ov society.
For the geisha to consider leaving the willow world, dealing with the civilians, as most would, seems an impossible task, that's because it is.
When every cell ov her being has been cultivated over the life time as art, as life continues, the geisha will continue...until death."
- Jenna Jyoti
I have kept the quotes, except for the last + most meaningful, anonymous for obvious reasons. Here is my original statement from The Pain Project:
For the rest of the images please visit my official website post:
Thank you all for your ongoing support. It does help to know you are all around me, lifting me up. I believe I am getting better. I may never be free of this completely but any small moment of freedom from it is a blessing.