World Art Day – how art can help ease mental illness and create change.

It’s World Art Day and SANE – The Mental Health Charity asked me to do a drawing to celebrate and raise awareness of how affective art can be to help with mental illness.

Art saved my life. Not figuratively, but literally. I was at the end of the road in 2010, after suffering my 4th severe break down. I was suicidal and told that there was no support for me. I then stood at a cross road, with a paint brush in one hand and a self distruct button in the other.

Then I just started to paint.

I am able to communicate with art, sort through painful memories and help create change for others by raising awareness regarding mental health and the stigma people like myself deal with due to having mental illness.

I encourage people to find a creative outlet this world art day, you won’t regret it.

Please support SANE and if you need help or resources follow the link to find out more:

http://www.sane.org.uk/how_you_can_help/fundraise/vote_for_sane/

Like moths among the whisperings – Art by Charlotte Farhan

 

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Like moths among the whisperings 

by Charlotte Farhan

 

Anxiety can make one very small,

compressing you within,

it can keep you away like a mothball,

with depression as its conjoined twin.

The light draws us out,

but not for long,

however we stay alert – on the look out,

not sure if we belong.

We see others as butterflies,

fluttering with ease,

with their calm – we idealise,

where as we would be lost in a strong breeze.

When waking our hearts burst,

our minds race,

life pulling at us – being coerced,

forced to adorn our poker face.

We are like moths among the whisperings,

manoeuvring through the polite conversation,

like candles pulling us in – glistening,

so familiar – marking the end of our adaptation.


This painting and poem were prompted by a line in the Great Gatsby ,

There was music from my neighbor’s house through the summer nights. In his blue gardensmen and girls came and went like moths among the whisperings and the champagne and the stars.

but the line “like moths among the whisperings” made me think of how it feels to live with anxiety disorders whilst among others who don’t. It conjured up this image of anxious people as moths and non-anxious people as butterflies.

The irony is that most of the people who visited the parties in The Great Gatsby were probably butterflies. However even there I am sure a few moths anxiously found there way around , maybe with some dutch courage to aid their cause.



 

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