I’m not normally one to jump on corporate charity bandwagons (see, like, all of last week’s posts), but Bell Canada is working on a program called Let’s Talk (you may have seen Olympian/heroine of the nation Clara Hughes talking about it) that is actually raising money for research and support in mental health. (Yes, I am skeptical about their motives PR-wise – especially when a smartphone features in every poster. But let’s talk about the legit cause they support, okay?)
I am not clinically (or, at least not diagnosed…ly?) mentally ill, though I’ve definitely been through phases of situational depression. And I rarely talk about them, not out of shame, but mostly because I don’t want to bother anyone with my pithy, generally unhelpable (or just plain spoiled/entitled) problems (that usually go away within days or weeks). I’m sure that’s not the right strategy, really, and I’m sure many others have employed it. It might have to do with the stigma of it, or because I’m obsessed with the idea of always appearing so damned capable. Boot straps are engaged always. Healthy, eh? (No, not really.)
Unfortunately, ‘Let’s Talk’ Day was yesterday, so sorry if y’all missed it too. I rarely see commercials these days. But, really, this is one of those cases where a day is not enough (see also World Aids Day, National Violence Against Women Day, and any other ‘day’ when people find something important for 24 hours, pop on a ribbon, then forget about it once they lose the ribbon in the snow); we should talk about mental illness whenever it’s necessary. This country is completely underserved mental healthcare-wise, with people being priced out of getting the help they need. Prisons have replaced long-term care facilities. It’s appalling. Socialised medicine may have its limitations, but this shouldn’t be one of the areas we skimp on.
Anyway, all this to say that I love Clara Hughes and I think that this campaign is a great
idea start. Go listen to this interview she did with Terry O’Reilly about it.
(Honestly, I have a longer entry percolating on this and other bits and pieces related to community. If I can untangle the 800 threads in my brain about it, I’ll post it soon. Maybe after the March/April cinema guide goes to press.)
Edited to throw in a just-done conversation (on Google Talk) that I had with Richard about last night’s dreams:
richard: oh yeah?
me: I often dream about trains, urban ones. And a market in chinatown that’s a converted giant barn/farmhouse
me: But the market was all very artisanal and WASP-y
richard: how odd
me: She was trying to convince me to work there too because she made $30/hr
me: Some other lady tried to sell me a Christmas octopus. Which didn’t really look like an octopus.
richard: yeah, no kidding