Sometimes, I am grateful I’m depressed. In fact, I write the best when I’m feeling down in the dumps. The effervescence of words bubbles out uncontrollably. I dare say, I rediscovered my creativity in the most unlikely way – through depression.
Although 2 years old, Jonah Lehrer has a point in his New York Times article, “Depression’s Upside,” that perhaps depression isn’t all that bad. For some 10 years I had buried my creativity from writing poetry and short stories, to grow up and get a proper job. I did my classes, got my good grades, and entered university in the most elite program possible for an insignificant and teeny city as Hong Kong. I found a job and prospered according to the terms and conditions imposed by society, teachers and parents.
I forgot I was ever creative. I forgot that I drew my first book and published it via “Tweety Bird Publishers” since my favourite toy back then was Tweety Bird, when I was merely six years old. I forgot the joy of reading books, caught up in the battles and romance and imaginary world weaved by simple and bland letters put together to form words, and phrases, and paragraphs.
Had I not gotten into depression three years ago, I might have still rediscovered all this one day. But now that I have gone down this route, I can only thank the messed up period in my life for bringing me back to what I love – my writing.
Writing is an expression of my creativity, and depression inspired me in a painstaking way to rejuvenate this creativity.
Indeed, I believe everyone is creative, in their own ways. I stumbled across this article one day by Jen, and maybe you can find out what kind of creative you are. I’m Dutiful Creative – and I need to make creativity more a priority in my life. I’m working on it. It could be the way out for my depressive tunnel. I’m also sharing this as part of the In Good Company Project, to encourage those who have experienced depression and anxiety to share their story and find the good within the darkness.
My creativity does not stop at writing. It extends to a bear collection. I had qualms about calling this “creative” for I think it’s more appropriately defined as “crazy,” or some prefer to call me “nuts” or “bonkas”. Yet, I had already introduced my bears on this blog once and it is by far the most popular blog posts – I think this means something. At least it means I’m not the only crazy person around.
So when I was lying in bed wrought with insomnia one night, I decided I will create another website simply dedicated to my bears.
Timmie helped me coin the term “Bearapy.” Credits are to him. I have defined it as a form of therapy and treatment that involves cute and cuddly animals, and for me, it was the Snuffles bears created by Gund.
I’m calling myself The Bearalist – a bear specialist. Don’t argue with me.
In my head, I run off with them for adventures, and I take them with me when I can, or coerce Timmie into bringing them to New York Fashion week and the likes. Two of them are now in Melbourne looking for honey.
So the idea blossomed, and my website designer, Will, seemed keen to journey into craziness with me. In fact, he came up with the term “cuddle rating” and made the bears’ ID cards jiggle. I’m not the only looney one it seems…
You can call me crazy. I call this creative.
It’s a fine line. But this time, I will decide where to draw it.
My acknowledgements to Timmie for coining the term and encouraging me to build this website, Will for designing the website and building it, plus not laughing at me for this project, Chi for not defriending me as a result of this but rather, suggesting ways to build on the website, and Zander for brainstorming tag lines and visions for this new little blog, and reminding me that there could be potential to expand from mere photos of the bears.
I’m not sure yet where Bearapy will lead me, and the vision needs crystallizing. For now, I will enjoy giggling at my own production of bear photos. One step at a time.
Channel your creativity. Whatever it may be.
Enjoy some Bearapy here.
If you have any ideas for how Bearapy can develop, or thoughts about this post, please share in the comments below. Also, if you liked this blurb please share with your friends and help my blog grow. Thanks!