A torn raincoat.

I fell in love with Leonard Cohen late in life; I had been married several years already. Had I been a life-long fan, I might look at someone in my position with pity, or scorn – can someone who barely knows a man, really say they love him? (Or maybe that is the only time we can love anyone? – I digress).
Leonard Cohen spoke to me at a time when I needed him. He gave me words, where I had none, to name my pain. He sang to me through my breakdown, from across the years, and he helped me get better. I don’t think that’s an exaggeration, or melodramatic, though I know I romanticise at the best of times.
One lyric, particularly, has become like a mantra for me: “Thanks for the trouble you took from her eyes / I thought it was there for good / so i never tried”. For years, I had believed that my depression and the subsequent breakdown were things that I couldn’t change – that it was genetic, hereditary, and fixed inside me. I wanted to give up trying to feel better, thinking that this trouble was all there really was behind my eyes. I was defined by it.
It wasn’t simply a lyric that saved me – it was the support and help of many people, including mental health professionals – but perhaps it was the beginning of imagining there could be a different future for me, if I just tried.
RIP Leonard. Thank you, sincerely.


4 comments on “A torn raincoat.

  1. Qian says:

    Oh, Sun… I’m so sorry you had to suffer all that and we couldn’t help or prevent it. You are so much a better and more lovely person because of it, but I don’t know if that’s enough of a reason or consolation…

    Really love you, Beautiful You.

    • sunshriek says:

      I’m getting to a place where I can really see how much I learned from it, and how valuable it all was. There’s a crack in everything – it’s where the light gets in. Love you, too.

      • Words Were Weapons Now Ploughs says:

        Forget the perfect offering; you wrote the response I was going to write. x

  2. Jess says:

    That lyric got me too xxx

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