There is a light?
Well if there’s not, this is the day to bring it then.
And for that. There’s no better one than yer man Adam Clayton. If U2 is my happy place, he’s the reason why it’s also a place I feel at home, a place I belong – my safe place.
I’ve been willing to write about that man and the impact he has on so many of us for quite some time and with Christmas just around the corner, it feels like an appropriate time.
And no I’m not talking about Santa Adam.
And if that was your first thought, maybe that post isn’t for you – but do me a favor and stick around all the same, I have a word for you too, shiny happy people – I’m not calling you victims of propaganda I swear. It just fits. Bear with me for a second.
This post is a gentle reminder that you don’t have to love Christmas. At all. No matter how much pressure you can feel these days, you don’t have to fake that general excitement nor that smile – that’s obviously valid for other days but if you get this, you get this.
Christmas time is not easy for many people. It’s that time of year, like birthdays and anniversaries, that forces you to stop and think much more about, well, a lot of crap.
I don’t believe in Christmas miracles fed by churches and silver screens. The only Christmas miracle I’ve ever witnessed was the one of the mind called sudden clarity. What a bitch.
Maybe you feel much more alone all of a sudden.
Maybe the ghosts of the people you lost get louder.
Maybe the childhood wounds of your traumas feel raw again.
Maybe you realize that fuck they’re right and you’re an addict.
Maybe the next 2 weeks will be an overthinking hell dreading the judgment of the people supposed to love you.
Maybe everything is wrong.
Maybe nothing makes sense.
Maybe it will never stop.
Maybe it has to stop?
You don’t have to put yourself through all that just because everyone around you is jolly and happy.
You don’t have to let your depression and your anxiety take over just because of what others expect of you.
You’re not responsible for your traumas.
You’re not responsible for the judgment of others, and shit news, you can’t escape those – but remember that their actions don’t define you, only the way you let them affect you will build the foundation of yourself.
Maybe you do need help and in that case don’t let shame get in your way and ask for it.
Don’t let your grief prevent you from living because that’s not what they would have wanted for you.
And more importantly, you’re not alone.
No for real.
You are not.
Proof right here from a perfect stranger writing a shit post to let you know that. It’s not much but it’s something eh.
So yeah it’s Christmas. But you know what? You can have it your way. You don’t need permission for that – and if you feel guilty, well look, here’s my permission then.
Go enjoy yourself.
Treat it like a normal day or treat yourself.
Plan things YOU love to do after the obligations you have.
Or tell em all to fuck off and have a Netflix and chill day.
You’re in charge.
It’s your life.
But keep in mind that you don’t have to be alone and maybe company can do you good too. Maybe their judgments are really just worry from people that love you and care about you. Maybe it will be just as shit as planned but that one convo will make it worth it. Maybe at the end of the day you’ll have found something to hold onto, even if it’s just the pride of having made it through another year.
Maybe there’s no such thing as bad days but just bad memories and the best way to deal with those is to keep trying, making better ones.
You don’t have to love Christmas, but it doesn’t mean it has to be a bad time.
What does any of this have to do with Adam Clayton you ask me?
I’ll get there, promise. You know I love taking you on a little stroll to the point every time.
Funny business being a fan isn’t it?
Devoting so much time, energy and SO MUCH love to someone we don’t even know and we’ll never truly know. We all sound pretty wackos stated like that. But nah. I think for some of us, and probably to the ones who could relate to what I just badly wrote, it’s about looking for a role model when there’s none suitable in our real life. Don’t make me say what I didn’t say, I’ve never implied you’re all surrounded by arseholes – I mean suitable to our dreams and inspirations. Something like that.
And eh, what better than people who you only see the bright shiny face? Perfect make up and insolent good hair every day? Those who shine so very bright that even your wildest dreams get blinded by them? Ha. Celebrities. The perfect by day, and whatever-they-want by night. Hmm. Yeah. Good role model – but only to escape yourself.
See, problem is. I don’t like perfect.
I like cracks. I like true.
Hence Adam Clayton.
Adam had his own struggles. He had his own traumas. And he’s being very open and transparent about it now. And more importantly, he made it through. He’s seemingly happy. Damn, that’s possible then?
And then, just like that – you find yourself in someone else’s words, someone who is not perfect and is okay with that. And that’s what actually helps you.
It’s not just a role model you’re seeking, it’s guidance to navigate a world you don’t always understand, it’s understanding that your own thoughts are not necessarily the truest thing about you, and reaching for that wild hope it can get better. A role model that you can look up to for good reasons, a sort of companionship that holds your hand and reminds you that where there is darkness, you can always be your own light – with a little help from your friend.
That man’s gentleness and honesty on mental health issues will never cease to amaze me. He always finds the right words to make us feel okay when facing our truths. When facing some days that are better than others.
So, I’ll leave you here now with an interview from the man himself that helped me so much. Words I needed to hear. Words that inspired me beyond well, words. I could have recut it to get straight to the point but it’s too good for that.
If there’s anyone you should listen to these days, listen to him.
He makes everything feel okay for a good 23 minutes.
Happy holidays to the ones who struggle and the ones who are having a shit time right now, it’s okay. And it will be. Hang onto the light if you can find it, and if you can’t – there was never any shame to ask for it. You’re not alone.
And happy holidays to you all, the twinkling lighters, the ho ho ho appreciators, the ones who can’t wait to put on those ugly jumpers – I said I’d have a word for you too in this post and the word is, be kind. Be kind and check on your friends, on your family members, check on those who got a bit quiet these days and struggle in silence putting up fake smiles to blend in. We can all do our part to make it a true festive season for those around us and make everyone feel a little less alone during the sudden clarity bitch days.
And to Adam,
Thank you for always being such an inspiration for your fans – what a brilliant human being you are.