invincible summers

in the middle of winter I at last discovered that there was in me an invincible summer. (albert camus)

for the robert downey jr fans December 17, 2008

Filed under: change,hope,love — clementine @ 2:37 pm
Tags: , ,

a man who has been through it all and survived. i deeply admire him and still love this Elton John video he made in 2001.

“I Want Love”

(after you click play, you will have to click on the youtube logo as this video does not allow embedding)

Music by Elton John
Lyrics by Bernie Taupin

I want love, but it’s impossible
A man like me, so irresponsible
A man like me is dead in places
Other men feel liberated

I can’t love, shot full of holes
Don’t feel nothing, I just feel cold
Don’t feel nothing, just old scars
Toughening up around my heart

But I want love, just a different kind
I want love, won’t break me down
Won’t brick me up, won’t fence me in
I want a love, that don’t mean a thing
That’s the love I want, I want love

I want love on my own terms
After everything I’ve ever learned
Me, I carry too much baggage
Oh man I’ve seen so much traffic

So bring it on, I’ve been bruised
Don’t give me love that’s clean and smooth
I’m ready for the rougher stuff
No sweet romance, I’ve had enough


songs and what they mean to me December 16, 2008

Filed under: life,love,mental illness,pain,peace,stigma — clementine @ 4:12 pm

Music has become a big part of my life. It brings out emotions when I need to feel them. sadness. happiness. love. pain. anger.

Here are a few of my favorite songs and why:
(for some reason wordpress will not allow me to embed the audio)

Both Sides Now by Joni Mitchell
Sure, befriending her a few years ago has something to do with this. But more importantly her words speak to all of us. I listen to this song frequently and it has taught me a lot about LIFE.
click here to listen

Under Pressure by David Bowie and Queen
I’m not that ‘music savvy’ however, I believe we can all interpret music in our own way. This song is very special. When I hear the lyrics:

It’s the terror of knowing
What this world is about
Watching some good friends
Screaming ‘Let me out’
Pray tomorrow – gets me higher
Pressure on people – people on streets

I think of the mentally ill screaming, let me out! the people on the streets, the homeless. we are all just as important. I have a BIG, probably impossible dream of someday using all of my contacts in the film/music industry and putting together a large event with 50 or more actors, artists, musicians, etc. who all come together on one stage to send the message- WE ARE ALL ONE….LET’S COME TOGETHER AND END THE MENTAL ILLNESS STIGMA. I imagine several people singing this particular song and as I’m driving in my car listening to it, dreaming, it sometimes makes me cry. Who knows…maybe someday, anything is possible.
click here to listen

I Won’t Back Down by Tom Petty
very similar to the above. this would be one of the songs played. why? when i listen to this song I think of one thing—I won’t back down, I will not let my illness defeat me. I will fight big pharma and the evil that surrounds them in the mental health world. For example, Stephany at soulful sepulcher is a true example of never backing down. And I dream of her being there on stage, with her daughter, singing along with Tom Petty.
click here to listen

Just Like Honey by The Jesus and Mary Chain
I just simply love this song. I haven’t quite figured out why. But it does remind me of a favorite film of mine, Lost in Translation.
click here to listen


it’s the simple things December 14, 2008

Filed under: life — clementine @ 2:54 am
Tags: , , ,

I’ve been using genius at itunes and really loving the feature. certain play lists bring back so many memories, both good and bad. i never listened to music as a child/teenager with the exception of Madonna, Michael Jackson and The Cars (oh, ok a little Tiffany, Journey and Pat Benatar) but over the past several years I have found comfort and happiness in so many artists (Bob Dylan, Joni Mitchell, Amos Lee, Tori Amos, James Taylor, Death Cab for Cutie, The Rolling Stones, The Beatles, Aimee Mann, Nick Drake, Ani DiFranco, Jeff Buckley, Arcade Fire, Pixies, Radiohead, Elliott Smith, The Cure, Interpol, Miles Davis, Leonard Cohen, Johnny Cash,Tom Waits and Nina Simone to name a few…) I have a difficult time writing these days without music playing.

Last night I avoided going to a party-still not quite ready to socially interact. And yet, we’re hosting a holiday party on the 20th. I will spend this week planning a party (with no money) and luckily it’s potluck so I’m hoping to find something creative to make with items in our pantry and counting on friends to bring a variety of good foods. I will prepare myself to interact with friends and loved ones without breaking down. That’s the tricky part about medications, you never know how they might affect you on a daily basis. (I won’t get into why I really despise the antidepressants and antipsychotics tonight)

Tomorrow I will paint. Nothing significant or fancy. I’m painting the trim in our guest bathroom. I’m using the excuse that I need to do this before our guests arrive next weekend and liven the room up a bit. But in reality, it’s a form of therapy. Lining the floors with blue tape, paint splattering everywhere and all over me, shiny new trim and finally…a nice long, hot bath afterward.

Five years ago I was fortunate enough to befriend Joni Mitchell and she immediately told me upon our first meeting, “You need to find your center.” It was a powerful statement especially coming from her and I’ve never forgotten it. I think that’s what most of us living with a mental illness long for…finding that center. I have been working on it and have decided sometimes it’s the simple things in life that get me closer to that place.

And so I will paint, and listen to music. stare at our Christmas tree lights and our fireplace. shop for angel tree families with money from the richest of rich in our town. i will burn cinnamon sticks in water over the stove since I can’t afford one of my most favorite things in the world-candles. open holiday cards and smile. and i will dream of reaching that center… (more…)