I am currently reading a collection of brilliant essays by many writers who underwent depression: ‘Unholy Ghost,’ edited by Nell Casey.
As I read the essay ‘ From darkness visible’, by William Styron, I was struck by the similarity in the nature of some characters in the book above, ( which I loved translating) and Styron’s analysis of his own heroines.
‘ Suicide has been a persistent theme in my books-three of my major characters killed themselves.In rereading, for the first time in years, sequence from my novels- passages where my heroines have lurched down pathways toward doom- I was stunned to perceive how accurately I had created the landscape of depression in the minds of these young women, describing with what could only be instinct, out of a subconscious already roiled by disturbances of mood,the psychic imbalances that led them to destruction.’
I also read ‘Noon time’: Lauren Slater’s stunning essay about being intensely depressed during her pregnancy…
‘ I will call her Clara, for clear, and Eve, which in Hebrew means life, and I will hope the gap between her name and her life is small. Clear Life. A life without depression. That is what she means, this little girl…’
( I remember with gratitude, the quote about serendipity…that it is a small miracle where God prefers to remain anonymous!)