Welcome to Geeks Vs Loneliness, our spot on the site where we tend to talk about mental health matters that may be affecting you, or people around you. No miracle cures are offered, just chat, and hopefully a few helpful pieces of advice here and there.
This week, I want to talk about a musical.
I don’t know if any of you have ever had the pleasure of Matilda: The Musical, that now appears to be heading to the movies before the end of the decade. The lyrics to the show were penned by the mighty Tim Minchin, and the first big song you get is Naughty.
I love Naughty, and I like the message that it sounds out. It’s one of those that’s easier written down than put into practice, as many such messages are. But just have a look at these lyrics…
Just because you find that life’s not fair, it
Doesn’t mean that you just have to grin and bear it
If you always take it on the chin and wear it
Nothing will change
Even if you’re little you can do a lot, you
Mustn’t let a little thing like ‘little’ stop you
If you sit around and let them get on top, you
Might as well be saying you think that it’s OK
And that’s not right
Actually, reading it again, it’s a lot easier written down than it to put into practice. Heck, I had a moment a month or two back when I was sat, utterly alone, feeling utterly stuck. To the point where I felt my body starting to shake, because I couldn’t see a workable way out of the situation I was in. It scared the life out of me. To be stuck in a mental tunnel, with nothing but darkness and no obvious way out of it. If you’d have told me at that point that it “doesn’t mean that you have to grin and bear it”, the response may not have been pleasant.
But it doesn’t mean it isn’t true. One recurring feature of Geeks Vs Loneliness articles is that very often, the catalyst for change has to come from yourself. Rarely for deliberate reasons: people around you may not realise what you’re going through, and it may take a couple of calls for help before you get through too. That’s just modern life.
In my case, I had to do something, and it certainly took a couple of attempts before I made any kind of meaningful breakthrough. The most frustrating part, where I nearly ran back to the darkness, was when I’d built up the courage to do something, and it didn’t work. Finding the energy and desire to do so again was brutal.
I say all this appreciating I have things a lot easier than some. But conversely, another Geeks Vs Loneliness mantra is that just because somebody else has a broken leg, it doesn’t mean that a broken toe doesn’t hurt, and doesn’t need attention.
Matilda, in conclusion, is a terrific show. But that message – that if you continue to take things, nothing will change – really resonated with me. I suspect it will with some of you, too.
Thanks for reading, as always, and stay awesome.