The Fields of Kindness

Caroline cooks for us on the Soul Biographies RETREATS in England. No shadow of doubt, it is artistry. And in June, as time stood itself still, she walked towards the camera as if beckoned by something more powerful than the need to be seen.

What happened next was as naked as naked can be. A courageous and utterly beautiful articulation of the sheer weight and terror of depression. And of a place arrived at. A place that had always been there.

More films by Nic Askew

Me, Myself, and My Depression

When I began putting together this narrative of my experiences, I had no idea where to start. I was feeling a little lost. Normally I’m very on top of things, I do my readings two weeks ahead of schedule and like to get assignments done a week before they’re due. But for some reason, I found myself procrastinating about working on this. I think it had something to do with the fact that finding words to form a coherent and cohesive discussion about my experiences with mental illness was extremely intimidating and scary. In the beginning This is me when I’m 3 on my first day of school. Apparently I was NOT happy to be going. Although I didn’t start feeling the symptoms until later in my teens, anxiety is something I’ve been dealing with for as long as I can remember. My parents put me in a bunch of different sports when I was a child and I can remember becoming extremely anxious before a swimming lesson or a softball game, the week leading up to it filled with dread. Reading through report cards from Grade 2, I read comments from my French teacher about how I cried a lot, especially [...] continue the story

Christina’s recollection of losing her marbles

If I hadn’t been reading a library book, my life today might yet be quite different. It all came down to a night I went to the gym – I’m a rock climber – took off my shoes, tucked my necklace in my pants pocket, changed my clothes, and headed down to warm up.

Pause. My shoes were my ever-present Birkenstocks, since, despite the rain, I’d lost one half of my pair of Keds (which are no more water resistant than flip-flops anyway), with one half of my pair of orthotics within, to the gods of the TTC about a month before. I’d made the mistake of tying them to my climbing harness, and at an unknown juncture, one half of my footwear abandoned ship and made a break for Never Never Land. This irony was later lost on me.

My necklace was the most expensive thing I had ever owned. It was a graduation gift from the theatre company I belonged to in university, a silver ring too small for a finger and intended for its accompanying silver chain. Both were stamped with Tiffany’s & Co. in tiny writing. I didn’t like it as much as those of graduates’ years past, [...] continue the story

When you look right through me

What evil disease is this, that would

steal the recognition of a loving daughter from her darling mother’s mind?

With love so strong and infinite, how could

a devoted mother suddenly go so far beyond, leaving a part of her heart behind?


So often you look right through me

as though I’m not here.

And as I wonder when you will again see me,

I become paralyzed with fear.


Each time you look right through me,

a jagged knife plunges into my already shattered heart

because although we’re together, we

couldn’t be further apart.


Although you look right through me

not knowing who I am, I will never forget you

or all that you have done for me.

And I will do everything I can to help you.


Whenever you look right through me,

please know that right here I plan to remain.

Forever by your side I promise I will be,

trying desperately to reunite us once again.


But the truth is – every time you look right through me,

another huge part of me dies.

Forever lost in eternity.

Unseen, like my unheard cries.


© Chrystal Gomes   2012


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TVO Interviews Chrystal Gomes

Uploaded on May 16, 2008

TVO’s Person 2 Person Interview, Paula Todd with Stand-Up Comedienne Chrystal Gomes about living with Multiple Sclerosis.

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