The Paradox of the Candle

Hands cupping a burning candleBefore I start with the content of the post, a poem with the same title as this entry, I wanted to mention that my beautiful and wonderful wife Jenny, is currently suffering from chronic depression brought on as a result of complex post-traumatic stress disorder. This means that she has been out of action for a while now as she battles her inner demons.

If you have ever experienced Clinical Depression yourself (not just feeling depressed, however bad), or known somebody close to you who has suffered from it, you will know that even if I were to try to explain, it would not make any sense. It would leave you feeling frustrated and wanting to help, but you can’t – the mind of a person suffering from Depression is not rational. Rest assured that she is currently getting professional help.

I thank you to pray for us and keep her in your thoughts as she heals, and allow our (her) story to be revealed in the fullness of time.

Here is the poem I wrote. It is partly a description of what I’m seeing, and partly my way of trying to understand what’s happening to my wife. It’s not a happy subject and does not have a happy ending, so please bear that in mind (especially if you’re suffering from depression…)


What must it be like to live
When your purpose is to die slowly
To give life to light.

The agony as your wick is burned
And your body is consumed by fire
Until nothing is left.

To keep on living in pain
Hurting those closest to you
Seeing them suffer.

Affected by the merest breeze
Flame wavers but fights to stay alive
For what reason?

But if you want to end it
You extinguish yourself
And create darkness.