I’m not big into reviews of TV shows and that type of writing. And still, the season finale of Insecure on HBO had me feeling…..feelings.
(FYI spoilers ahead for the Insecure season finale)
There is a scene in insecure where Nathan, shows up after disappearing on Issa because he had to leave Los Angeles, and he couldn’t bring himself to reach out to her. He didn’t want to weigh her down with his “mood”. I’m not sure if everyone would immediately recognize his sudden disappearance as some type of mental….something. I actually did not like the character of Nathan. As a secret romantic, I have been waiting for Issa to find Lawrence and become coupled again.
I did not know who Nathan was, and I really didn’t care. And suddenly I do care. because as Nathan struggled to explain his mental state and having difficulty reaching out to people, I started to see the character differently, as someone I could relate to. A character with something that doesn’t always feel ….. right.
It’s curious, that I became a Lawrence fan when I realized that he had experienced some form of depression when he was having difficulty figuring things out. I have always had difficulties figuring out my own trajectory and I welcome characters that also are stumbling through life, confused and somewhat vulnerable. I got Lawrence’s loneliness when he tried to call his friend in the first season but didn’t know how to say:
I am not sure everything is going well.
I am not sure If I can make it out of this.
I am not saying that our friends ought to be our therapists but it’s so strange that you may not be 100 and still feel like you have to be fun when around your friends. You tell your wife or your girl about your doubts and fears (If you do) and then stumble around everyone else as a version of yourself that’s easier to be around. You don’t want to weigh them down. I got Lawrence.
And then Lawrence figured himself out. And I became less like Lawrence. His vulnerabilities disappeared. His doubts and esteem changed into a player whose career was advancing. And though I secretly held strong to Issa and Lawrence getting back together, I didn’t recognize the character’s evolution. He had moved on from the self-doubt and uncertainty.
I didn’t. I know I ought not to compare myself to fictional characters but there is something cathartic about seeing situations that you can relate to playing out on the screen. And I got it again with Nathan. A character who is in flux.
There is something about representation that makes you feel normal. It validates how you feel. And the scene of him at Issa’s house, talking about something that he didn’t really understand, trying to explain how he feels sometimes, struck a chord. And just like that, I hope I see Nathan in Season 4. We need more black men on TV not being okay. It makes it okay.
It has been almost a year since I started this blog, and I’m truly grateful for the strides that I have made in that time. More than anything, in being open about my mental issues, and trying to be honest with those around me about the struggles and humor in my unique predicaments, I am feeling more normal in my skin. I feel (I have a lot of feelings) that this blog has allowed me to be more honest in my daily life embracing my differences. As I become more honest, I am realizing that anxiety and depression, and other mental issues are not rare in the black community. Rather, they are just covered up better. Or, pushed aside in pursuit of more pressing goals, like survival or rent. 🙂
Am I plagued by incessant thoughts? Sometimes
Do I think I’m dying? Occasionally!
Do I experience palpitations that make me think I may pass out? At times!
Do I get caught in a thought spiral of festering thoughts? Perhaps!
Do I get anxious when I have to leave the house? Possibly!
Do social situations leave me overthinking for days, weeks? It’s conceivable!
(gotta love a thesaurus)
And yet, I survive it all. The whole year And more. Eventually, it all passes. I give it time and it all passes. I talk it out and it passes. People listen (like you’s lot) and it passes. Or at least changes.
And still, in spite of my struggles, I must have made a step forward, in my weirdnesses, my sexuality, my anxieties. A journey to self-acceptance. I have had so many conversations over the past year with other black people about depression, mania, palpitations, therapy, fluidity, self-care and the like. If anything, I now feel a lot less special with my ‘head stuff’. And that’s a good thing. It’s not just me. The road is a lot less lonely, once you realize that. We out here, fighting and laughing!