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Today, I went to see the small Hessie exhibit at the Arts Centre and I went to Elsternwick Park this afternoon. Although the display is small, it was so comforting to be there. I could just sit there on the small couch there and just look at the three photos and just have Crowded House moments fill my head. You can just stand or sit there with your thoughts. Thanks to Peter Green for taking the time to set it up.
Going to Elsternwick Park for the first time, made me both confused and at ease at the same time. The park is so beautiful - so green and just seeing all these families, children and dogs having fun and enjoying themselves. I could see why Hessie loved that place. It was nice to know that he was in a place that was filled with natural beauty and happiness. I couldn't find the tree at first because it is a small tree and tucked away in a corner. It was so good to see that Hessie was loved by so many...so many flowers, notes, and even a few photos, and of course Reanne's big white hat is still there. It's nice to see that there is respect for that place and noone's disturbed it.
Just being there, I felt like it was a peaceful place and I just felt close to Hessie. I put a big yellow strong scented rose...as sign of respect for Hessie and thought he would have liked it. Yellow roses also are a sign of friendship and respect. I admired Paul so much - for his love of music, his personality, that he fulfilled his dreams, being a great dad, his community spirit...so many things. It just felt the right thing to do.
Seeing all the happy families, I thought about Paul's family and wondered how they were doing. When I was walking through the park, I saw a blonde-haired woman with her young daughter. For a second, I thought it was Mardi and Olive. Anyway, they were having fun together...might have been a sign from Hessie that everything's OK. I really hope that his family and his friends are OK.
Anyway, it was a really good experience and gave me a lot of comfort. Sorry for going on and on but I just needed to let it out.
You weren't going on Dave - this is the great thing about this forum - we can talk as little or as much as we want to about Paul and our feelings.
I think that we are so lucky to have this platform - for some of us it is the only place that we can share how we are feeling..
I'm please that you went today and spent time reflecting (hugs)

He hasn't left us - I can feel him everywhere

Sunday
Another mention of Paul in the Melbourne Age, this time from the wonderful Magda Szubanski.

You can find the full article here -- an interesting read. I've also copied the relevant part below, for all those who might be interested.

quote:
"Comedy is a release. People fantasise that if they have enough money or enough fame that you'll escape the struggle. But you don't. There's always sadnesses, tragedies. We are finite beings and we are vulnerable and mortal; there's nothing you can do to remove yourself from harm or hurt. It's part of being a person."

The comic actor's thoughts intensify. Her observations about the fine line between sadness and joy come partly in response to the death of the former Crowded House drummer Paul Hester, who took his life last month. "I knew Paul well, he lived in my street and so we're all reeling. It makes you think about what you're doing with your life and what things matter and how precious people are."

Szubanski lets her mind wander in silence. After a while she says: "None of us is all light or all shade - we're all a combination of that stuff. You know, I think people warm to Sharon because it's a classic sad clown thing.
Once again proving that Paul touched so many lives. Smiler

(For the non-Aussies... Sharon is a character that Magda plays on the wonderful series Kath & Kim -- Sharon Strzelecki, the sports-mad second-best friend of Kim).
I wish it hadn't taken so long for me to post my thoughts on Paul's passing--unfortunately I was computer-free starting right around the time it happened. I swore that as soon as I got my new computer, I'd come and say something. I've had it for just over five hours and now here I am.

I was travelling in the state of Ohio at the end of March, following Duran Duran for a few of their shows there. After their Columbus show on Monday the 28th, I met up in the venue parking lot with a friend from the Duran message board who was also at the show that night. She immediately said that she had bad news, and told me about Paul (she knew the extent of my Neil/CH fandom). I'm guessing that few people here, when they first heard, believed it; I was no exception, especially since I didn't make a point of reading any newspapers on my trip. To cut a long story short, I decided against trying to meet the Durans that night as I was no longer in the mood (that's a gross understatement) and went straight back to my hotel room. I really couldn't think of anything else that night, or the next day for that matter.

On the next day I headed for Cleveland, which was the last show I was seeing before heading back home, where I was joined by two friends from home who were there for the show as well. Coincidentally, one of them went with me way back in Sept. 1987 to see CH in Royal Oak, Michigan. While in our seats before the show, she and I discussed what had happened; her position was that it was a "very selfish" thing for him to have done, especially because it was the ultimate abandonment of his children. She spoke of one of her co-workers/friends whose father did the same thing while she was at a young age, and was still screwed-up about it as a result.

She's known me for a long time, so I felt it appropriate to remind her of my own experiences with depression. I told her that while not wanting to cause pain to one's kids was a powerful inducement to stay alive, there are depths a person with that affliction can fall to where absolutely NOTHING can brighten them. This isn't speculation--throughout my life I've looked down into the abyss (which is all the more scary since you can't explain to anybody why it's so deep to you) a few times myself, but thankfully I've always been able to regain my perspective one way or another. It's a tragedy (in the true, Webster's dictionary sense) that Paul had family who loved him, friends of the calibre of Neil Finn who loved him also, and a grand sense of humour, among other assets, yet was unable to regain his.

The greatest tool in bringing me the peace of mind I now have was antidepressants; I don't want to get in the whole argument of whether they're good/bad/neutral. Let it suffice it to say that they're for some people but not for others, and I fall into the former category. I have no idea whether Paul was ever treated with them or not, or whether he was even CLINICALLY depressed or afflicted with something else entirely; it's none of my business, obviously. However, I really hope he didn't fall into the mindset of "Prozac, etc. is for weaklings", as one can draw a valid analogy between diabetes and clinical depression (if there is no reason to be ashamed of your body's trouble with blood sugar, why is there a stigma against your brain's trouble with neurotransmitters?). Many suicides could have been prevented but for that stupid form of bravado.

Before I started taking medication to treat my depression, the thing that gave me the most relief was music. It still does, whether recorded or at a concert; I fondly remember the three CH shows I'd seen with Paul in the band and what a lift they gave me each time (the aforementioned '87 show, as well as the Woodface and Together Alone tour stops in Detroit). I really had wanted to meet him especially after the TA show, since the only time I met him previously was at that '87 show, and he signed one of my Canadian $2 bills only after I'd made a bit of a putz of myself (don't ask how). I had wanted to apologize and try to make a better impression six-plus years later; whether he'd already left or was waiting until WE left I'll never know, but Neil, Nick and Mark were friendly and accomodating to everybody. No matter, I'll get him next tour, I thought. We all know what happened later that year, right?

However, it was nice to hear that he was still on good terms with the rest of the guys, so joining back up with them in one form or another didn't seem out of the question. Failing that, I figured I'd look him up at his cafe or something if I ever went to Australia on vacation, and let him know I was glad he was still around.

Now it won't ever happen.

But I'm still glad you were around.

Rest in peace, Paul.

--JPB.
I would like to thank everyone who has shared their feelings about Paul. I only met the band once, in 1989, and of course my meeting with Paul was most memorable of all! Sorry, that almost sounds obscene, but it's not intended that way.
Anyhow, suffice it to say that throughout the years (mostly just on March 19) I would wonder what Paul was up to. Between having a family to support(a family that came after 1989- I was in high school when I met CH), and not having the internet, it was only until a couple of years ago that I even tried to find out what Hessie & the guys were up to. Needless to say I didn't have much luck. The pickings were slim.
Then Paulo does something that I would never have guessed in a million years, and now I find out more than I probably wanted to know.
The exception to that is Frenz forum. I can't speak about any of my feelings without coming off as a total nut-job. I actually was beginning to wonder if I was not one after all, but now I feel so much better (or more normal anyway).
I envy you Aussie lot, being able to go to Elsternwick and other Hessie haunts. For six weeks I had walked around with a perpetual lump in my throat until yesterday. On my way to work, there is this large grassy hill. It is quite steep, and for the first time I found myself walking up this thing. Once I got to the top, I was able to see most of the west side of the city.
Without warning, I began to bawl, and tears were literally pouring down my face! It was the first time and place that I was truly alone. Anyone with kids can relate.
I stood there for quite awhile, only leaving because I was about to make myself late for work. I will be going back for another cry some time I imagine.
For 'Hessie sightings', I was doing a crossword puzzle and the clue was St._ _ _ _ _. First letter P. The answer was Paulo of course. Then today I passed a salon that read Salon Campaulo. As I was passing, the owner laid a large board up against the wall, obstructing Cam- so in large black latters, I see paulo. Weird huh?
Blessings, till next time.
Wow 6 weeks on and we still have people visiting for the first time and pouring their hearts out from all around the world.... Smiler

Bloodshift thankyou so much for getting all that out! I feel like I know some of where you are coming from and I'm glad you could finally get it all down onto 'paper' as it were, and share it here. I'm sad you will never get to say to Paul hey glad you're still around - that's what I always *felt* when he was around you know? "Hey, Paul's working there tonight that's so cool."

quote:
Originally posted by Sundaymarch:
[qb] It was the first time and place that I was truly alone. Anyone with kids can relate.
[/qb]
Oooh yes I know *exactly*. It's been difficult at times to reflect in peace! Smiler After my intense weekend last, with visiting Blackwood and the park, and sharing Saturday with Frenz and our Hessie memories, I just *knew* there was something that had to happen. When I was finally on my own in the car on the Sunday night I just put on Italian Plastic and howled all the way home. (I was so glad it was a longish drive!) My husband's car still hasn't recovered from the volume IP got to Wink , and the drivers' side is still a bit salty and wet.

So yeah, I know when you're alone those tears can come on you almost unexpectedly, and the lump in the throat can be there in the meantime. I really felt for you reading that as I'm sure many of us did - we've all been there *big hugs*

Funny about those Paulo things Smiler

And Dave19 - so glad you got to do that for yourself. That Arts Centre corner is a great place for a quiet sit isnt it? Smiler I'm so glad the white hat is still there at the park - we wondered if we should have bolted it to the ground in some way! Hope more of us can catch up for a drink one of these days.

Aah Hessie

Annie
xx
quote:
Originally posted by AnnieMay:
[qb]So yeah, I know when you're alone those tears can come on you almost unexpectedly, and the lump in the throat can be there in the meantime. I really felt for you reading that as I'm sure many of us did - we've all been there *big hugs*[/qb]
*Nods* I'm still having moments where non-Crowded House songs even still get to me 'cause they keep reminding me of Paul. Like, the other day I heard Peter Gabriel's "Don't Give Up" that Kate Bush dueted with him on, and that song's always made me cry because of Kate's voice on it, but the other day when I heard it, it reminded me of Paul and I cried a bit. And U2's "Sometimes You Can't Make It On Your Own" has really been sticking with me these past few weeks.

Oddly enough, while non-Crowded House related songs still make me all teary-eyed, whenever I hear songs like "Italian Plastic" or "My Telly's Gone Bung", those don't make me cry ("Italian Plastic" made me a bit sad when I heard it not long after everything, but not so much anymore). They make me smile. Go figure *Shrugs*.

Sundaymarch, yeah, that is weird about the Paul sightings and stuff. Freaky.

And I do have to agree that it is great to see this thread still going after all this time. Paul sure was loved. Still is, actually, from the way some of these posts sound. Most consider it a great thing if you have a few people who genuinely care about you in your lifetime, and here Paul had his friends, family, and all of the people posting here, from all corners of the globe, who care about him. That's pretty cool, I'd say.

Angela
Just curious if anyone else read the Sunday Herald Sun (Melbourne) this week, particularly the Derryn Hinch column?

There was a very disturbing piece of information in that article about Paul's suicide that really got me thinking...

It made me question whether what happened was just an unfortunate "mishap" inasmuch as a spur of the moment decision that went further than it perhaps was meant to.

Also, that he apparently left no note is a worrying thought when coupled with what was said in the article...

Granted, I do not pretend to know what Paul's state of mind was like in the weeks, days, hours and minutes prior to his death, but I'm kind of thinking now that it was perhaps a cry for help that in the end went unheard.

I could have the wrong end of the stick entirely, but these are just my thoughts after reading the Derryn Hinch article.

It's still such a sad thing though.

Rest In Peace Paul.
Sorry mate, I've looked where I thought it might be online and I can't find it either.

One day shortly I might perhaps type it out word for word the bits concerning Paul, but be warned, it knocked my socks off what was written.

I don't wanna upset anyone unduly.

Could one of the mods let me know if this would be appropriate or not, to post what I am referring to in my previous post?

Thankyou, BillyG.
I too, would like to know what was in the article. I have been questioning myself for thinking that perhaps it was almost an accident, like that he thought that he'd be stopped or something. Yesterday, the idea came to me that possibly he went to the park in order to not de-value the cost of his home. I don't know, to do something so... stupid, and to be able to think rationally at the same time?

Every time I look at my childrens beautiful faces, my heart aches for Sunday and Olive. How could you Paul?
quote:
Originally posted by BillyG:
[qb] I don't wanna upset anyone unduly.

Could one of the mods let me know if this would be appropriate or not, to post what I am referring to in my previous post?

Thankyou, BillyG. [/qb]
Billy, please don't post the article publicly -- from your earlier description, it sounds to me as though the article is made up of speculation (if I'm wrong, please correct me). Seeing as Paul's friends (and potentially his family) have been reading the board, we'd rather not promote speculation, especially if there's no way for statements to be confirmed (whether from Peter Green, or others).

Thanks for understanding. Feel free to PM me, or any of the mods, if you have questions.
quote:
Originally posted by Sundaymarch:
[qb] Every time I look at my childrens beautiful faces, my heart aches for Sunday and Olive. How could you Paul? [/qb]
Sorry to sound like a broken record, but we've been over this. No-one but Paul knows what was in his head at that moment, and it's not up to us to question why he did what he did. It doesn't change anything, and if someday Olive and Sunday read this tribute, it won't answer any of their questions.

Thanks for understanding. Please feel free to PM me or any of the mods if you have questions.
Pharmgirl,

Thankyou for your response to my question.
It was precisely what you said that stopped me from posting it in my original post.

I didn't mean to seem like a "teaser" and I apologise sincerely to anyone who may have been offended by what I wrote.

Honestly, the only reason I posted what I did was because I was appalled by what was written in the article and was wondering if others, if they read it, felt the same way.

Again, I am sorry if I upset or offended anyone.

...BillyG.
I must admit l haven't read all 33 pages of this topic but l've got to write- l'm so glad people are still finding it hard to believe Hessie's gone. Everytime l try to talk about Hessie and his passing- l get choked up and tears come to my eyes and the people l tell just don't understand how much of an idol he was to me.

I've had a few people pass away in my life time (family, family friends, etc) but to be honest Paul Hester's passing has been the toughest of the lot and l didn't even know Hessie personally.

I visited Elsternwick Park a week after his passing and it was just such a glorious day that no tears came to my eyes but the start of the grieving process- l just didn't understand what had happened to him- such confusion.

A week after Hessie was buried l visited his grave site. I haven't wanted to write about the experience but l feel the need to now. I stood at the grave site which had no head stone and l felt so sad within and such a heavy heart. There was a piece of tan bark on the grave site with the simple words "Paul Newell Hester. Our friend at peace". Reading that simple passage made me see Neil, Nick, Tim, Peter and all Families who attended that funeral are just as human as us. They feel hurt and pain just like us. And yet to me... they seem to be rock stars who are unbreakable- so not true. They are just like us- human.

The main thing l got out of visiting Hessie's grave site was the realisation that his passing was true. I only met and shook Hessie's hand in November 2004 and now... he's gone forever. But l now know his spirit will live on forever as well through playing Crowdie cd's and videos.

Sorry for all the mumbo jumbo of my writing but it tells you the whole passing of Hessie confused yet touched me in a way l'll one day (hopefully) understand. Thanks for listening and for this forum.
quote:
Originally posted by hessie_79:
[qb]and the people l tell just don't understand how much of an idol he was to me.[/qb]
My mom and dad don't know a whole heck of a lot about Crowded House or about Paul Hester or stuff like that. They've heard a few of their songs here and there thanks to me, and thanks to the radio over the years, but that's about it. But when I tell them about him or about everything that happened or whatever, or when they hear someone else mention that stuff, they still show some interest and concern, they show genuine sadness for what happened. And I really appreciate that, it's definitely a lot better a reaction to get than a situation where I'd tell someone and have them give me a blank stare or roll their eyes or something. I think my parents' reaction has something to do with the fact that they've lost a few of their favorite musicians over the years to crappy things, so they can understand in that respect.

And when I told my sister about what happened, she was sad to hear the news, too, 'cause she'd started to like some more of their songs thanks to me playing them a lot ever since getting into them, and she'd always had a soft spot for Paul. She was pretty stunned when I told her the news.

I feel bad for those of you whose family and friends haven't been sympathetic to you. It's bad enough you have to deal with this, but to deal with it without support from other people...that's not fair. Even if they didn't know the guy all that well, they could still at least show some compassion. I'm sure they'd want that if they lost one of their favorite musicians, right?

And while my family has been pretty good about all this, it is still nice to come here and talk to all of you who've had the exact same reactions I've had to everything. My family was sad to hear the news and all that, yes, but they've not felt the extent of sadness that I've felt, and you guys have, so...

quote:
Originally posted by hessie_79:
[qb]A week after Hessie was buried l visited his grave site. I haven't wanted to write about the experience but l feel the need to now. I stood at the grave site which had no head stone and l felt so sad within and such a heavy heart. There was a piece of tan bark on the grave site with the simple words "Paul Newell Hester. Our friend at peace". Reading that simple passage made me see Neil, Nick, Tim, Peter and all Families who attended that funeral are just as human as us. They feel hurt and pain just like us. And yet to me... they seem to be rock stars who are unbreakable- so not true. They are just like us- human.[/qb]
Mmhm. So true.

That's really cool that you got to meet him. And don't worry about the rambling. We get what you're saying, and we sympathize *Hugs*.

Angela
Oh bugger Claire that is brutal. Frowner

We were recently talking about how someone could *not* know. There are many times I completely miss news for weeks on end, and it would be possible to go on always with your daily life, *not* knowing.

It is very tempting to wish that too, you know?Like what if I never heard...

As you can see there are plenty of us here always thinking of Paulo Smiler

Aaah Hessie xx

Annie
quote:
Originally posted by Cosmic_Claire:
[qb] I had no idea - it was my dad who just told me yesterday who found out from a friend of his at weork.

Soi i've signed into the Frenz forum after a few years absense to see if it's true - i can't belive it really is!!

I can't belive this didn't even make the UK news.

Thoughts go out to all his family and friends [/qb]
Apparently it did have a small mention (though I missed it as it was during the Albert Hall gigs) and had write ups in newspapers on Tuesday 29th.
Sorry it's been late for you finding out this news Frowner
Just seen Andy White and Alisson Russell tonight. Just a few people, in a small church. Charming, wonderful, intimate. Sent warm greetings to Tim and Neil (if they ever get to them). Closest I've been to anything CH-related, too remote to Madrid and Barcelona, but this time I was lucky, the concert was just half an hour from home!!!!
Still remembering Paul and Andy said Melbourne was still mourning two weeks ago when he was there( of course I know!)
Great duets from Andy and Alisson...touching
Winter Pumpkin,
Thanks for the response to my post. I must write my family have been very responsive and sympathetic to me about Hessie's passing. My mum and dad were the first people to sit me down and tell me the tragedy had happened. The response to my reaction was quite overwhelming with my mum checking that l was okay about the tragedy. When l talk to work colleagues or friends they really don't know how to respond to his passing. The first question is Paul who? And after l start the next sentence with Crowded House drummer, then the light goes on but like l wrote they don't realise how much of an idol Hessie was to me and others.
First off I would like to say God Bless you Paul Hester. My brother-in-law was the first one told me about his passing away. He knew I was a Crowded House fan. I was shocked to learn how he died too. I told my brother-in-law that Paul couldn't have killed himself because I always saw him as an upbeat, jovial character. I don't look at people with depression in a different way. I actually like to talk to them, so I can try and cheer them up. I try to be a good friend and say positive things to people who seem to be "in the valley." We all go there at some point in our life, although we all experience different degrees of the menacing illness. I know of a few people that have taken their life, and I'm always shocked to see the people who show up at the funeral. It's ironic, the person who took their life because they may have thought they didn't have a friend in the world, now at their funeral, have a room full of people that loved them dearly and would've loved to talk to them in their time of need.
quote:
Originally posted by hessie_79:
[qb]Winter Pumpkin,
Thanks for the response to my post. I must write my family have been very responsive and sympathetic to me about Hessie's passing. My mum and dad were the first people to sit me down and tell me the tragedy had happened. The response to my reaction was quite overwhelming with my mum checking that l was okay about the tragedy.[/qb]
You're welcome, and that's good that your family's been there for you like that.

My sister and I were talking a bit about it all last night, and I told her about how I'd cried a few times and stuff, and she's like, "Well, hey, you lost someone from a band you like. I'd do the same thing. It's okay." I appreciated that.

quote:
Originally posted by hessie_79:
[qb]When l talk to work colleagues or friends they really don't know how to respond to his passing. The first question is Paul who? And after l start the next sentence with Crowded House drummer, then the light goes on but like l wrote they don't realise how much of an idol Hessie was to me and others. [/qb]
Yeah. It's an odd situation.

Angela
I have drawn the most comfort I think from my 5yo. He comes to me with a book today - he's into encyclopedias at the moment - and he says "Hey Mum!There's 2 pages in here about Paul Hester!!"

I laughed because the book he was holding was actually a bible! Big Grin

Anyway, then he continues his little game and "reads" this from his little book,

"Paul Hester was a man who was the original drummer from Crowded House. You know the band CH - everyone in the world knows the band CH. Paul Hester died at Easter time. We will always miss him very much."

Not a bad eulogy from a 5 year old! Bless his cotton socks *again* Smiler

Annie
quote:
Originally posted by AnnieMay:
[qb] I have drawn the most comfort I think from my 5yo. He comes to me with a book today - he's into encyclopedias at the moment - and he says "Hey Mum!There's 2 pages in here about Paul Hester!!"

I laughed because the book he was holding was actually a bible! Big Grin

Anyway, then he continues his little game and "reads" this from his little book,

"Paul Hester was a man who was the original drummer from Crowded House. You know the band CH - everyone in the world knows the band CH. Paul Hester died at Easter time. We will always miss him very much."

Not a bad eulogy from a 5 year old! Bless his cotton socks *again* Smiler

Annie [/qb]
Awww. What a sweetheart Smiler . Great story, Annie.

Angela
My brother took his own life 11 years ago and I try to remember him for the way he lived his life and not the way he ended it.Paul's death has made me remember a lot of fun times;propping up the bar at Le Rox in Adelaide the first time the Crowdies toured here & Paul getting a guy up on stage to play drums,the guys peering over the top of the speaker stacks at Apollo Stadium in '87 and pulling faces at the crowd and my EMI rep mixing up my backstage pass and giving me a Wednesday night pass when I was at the THURSDAY SHOW!I never did get to meet them.
I guess what I'm trying to say is after the disbelief,shock,sadness,anger,questioning and blame,the thing that comforts me most is remembering the good times,little things that make me smile.
We'll always miss you Paul,but most of all Im sad
for everything you are going to miss out on.
Sometimes lifes just to hard,hope you're at peace now.
love Michelle
Finally watched "Farewell to the world" for the first time since Paul died. Was surprised that I didn't feel overly emotional or teary - just sad and puzzled. Everytime I see Paul smiling and happy, or hear him cracking a joke, the spiral of questions begin again. Just can't believe this wonderful, funny human being is gone.
I have read a few posts stating that there is a proven link between cannabis use and depression, and inferring that this might have been a major cause of Paul taking his life. Nads000 said �pot has been shown to exacerbate depression. This much is true�. I am not going to promote cannabis use, but the link between adult depression and pot use is still unproven. There has been a great deal of anecdotal �evidence� produced in news reports, and studies of depressive symptoms in teenagers using the drug, but the findings for adults remains unclear. Some of the negative �scientific� reports have been reviewed and found to be faulty � see http://www.drugtext.org/library/articles/nanahas.html. There are so many factors to take into account: among these being age, dosage, psychological well-being, and social adjustment. Writing in The American Journal of Psychiatry, Gregory Bovasso said this:

�Overall, the literature on the comorbidity of cannabis abuse and depression is divided. Longitudinal studies suggest that cannabis abuse in adults increases depressive symptoms, whereas cross-sectional studies suggest that a history of depression explains the dysphoria associated with cannabis abuse. The literature leaves open to question if cannabis abuse increases the incidence (i.e., new cases) of depression or if depression increases the incidence of cannabis abuse. Thus, the etiological significance of depression and cannabis abuse as risk factors for cannabis abuse and depression, respectively, is not well understood.�

(Bovasso, G. (2001), �Cannabis abuse as a risk factor for depressive symptoms�, The American Journal of Psychiatry, Vol. 158(12), pp. 2033-2037.)

I am not going to make any comments about Paul�s psychological well-being, but there are reports that he was bipolar, and persons with this condition are not advised to use cannabis regularly. However, who knows? Maybe pot made Paul happier and increased his quality of life. I never met him or smoked a joint with him, so I cannot comment. We could very well argue a link between his tea-drinking and depression. My point here is that we should be a bit more sceptical about sweeping claims about pot being bad.
Interesting read Matt, and yes generalised statements are often inappropriate about anything because thay are just that, but I guess in our grief we have all been searching for something to help make sense of this tragedy and enormous loss that we all feel.
Interesting you should mention Bipolar Disorder - personally I have always thought this could be the case with Paul, even going back to the 80's when you read interviews with the boys over the years and Paul's experiences of being so up and bright and on top of the world and then his "dark times" of depression and struggling - classic bipolar presentation - and again I'm not implying anything here (just my ramblings) as Bipolar is a diagnosed pyschiatric condition and there has been no mention of it with Paul, but it is the only thing that has helped ME make sense of what happened to him, and how the struggle could finally, after so many years of being so up and down,have just been too much more to bear.
It was interesting following the recent suicide also of Rene Rivkin who had diagnosed Bipolar, and there were several interviews with psychiatrists on the disorder following his death - they mentioned that apart from the fact that it requires several medications to control it and balance the moods and emotions(which can further dull and dampen any pleasure or enjoyment of life)the mood swings can change from up to down in a matter of days, even hours, and as up as the good times are, and they are usually very up and bright and gregarious, the down times or depressive cycles are even more severe and more intense, and being suddenly thrown from being really up and bright, to the absolute depths of despair in a matter of days or even hours(and uncontrollably so and without any logical reason or cause) is just too much for most to bear or cope with,( particularly if not on medication)because you just can't see or move out of it, and it is often when this happens that suicide is exceptionally common in this population - it's a terrible illness, and it is a disease of the brain's functioning - anyway,it was interesting to be hearing such interviews about this condition, and it made sense to ME and has helped ME find some reason for Paul's actions - it has nothing to do with what you have in your life, what situation and circumstances you are experiencing externally, it is purely a dysfunction of the brain and its chemicals, and imagine having to live with that for so many years, and to try and always be on the outside what people want you to be, and what you want to be with and for people - what an unbelievable effort, battle and constant struggle - i guess it can get to the point where it just breaks your spirit, no matter how much love you have in your life or responsibilty to others, and this I can understand as I live with a chronic physical illness, and the effort to maintain your spirit and personality is exhausting and no matter who and what you have in your life and how much love and support and joy is around you, times do come when you just think I can't do this any more. So, as I said, just my feelings and thoughts as we all struggle to make sense of this great loss.
I have also found comfort from an earlier post from someone who visited Paul's grave and although no headstone yet, an engraving from friends:
"Paul Newall Hester - Our Friend - At Peace"
I hope so.
RIP Hessie and thanks for the joy.
Hi Love&Peace. I too think that Paul was bipolar, but that is just my opinion based on what I have read from people who knew him and described their times with Paul over the years. The average person still thinks that depression just means a case of the blues, and that mania must be fun, but unless you have seen someone with the condition you really cannot grasp just how high the highs are and how low the lows are. An artistic person with the condition may actually benefit from the condition: depressive periods can help reflection, while manic periods can result in amazing busts of work. Quite a number of comedians have been bipolar: think Spike Milligan and his writing of thousands of words a day of final copy for the Goons radio shows when �up�. Of course, the highs can make people very erratic and over the top, and the lows can be devastating, leading to suicide. The male side of my family has a history of cyclothymia, a milder form of bipolar disorder, and I have seen the results of the moods. I have felt them too, and the lows can last weeks, and even recur in regular intervals. Often it is only after a low mood has passed that I realise that I have been �down�. If you think that you would know that your friend or loved one has depression, think again. People who experience �down� periods get used to hiding them, dismissing them, and like Hessie, withdrawing from people because they do not want to bring anyone else �down�. People who say that others should have seen the �warning signs� in a depressed person really do not know what they are talking about. While I never met Paul or even really listened to or liked Crowded House, his death greatly affected me, and visiting Elsternwick Park (which I had never been to before) was emotionally draining. I was not surprised at the location though. I too have taken walks in parks at night when feeling very down, and for some reason, gravitated towards the children�s playground. I told this to my partner, who was puzzled, and I realised that this area reminds you of when you are young and carefree and the future is forever. After a time I would feel better and go, but Hessie unfortunately did not return home. For me, Hessie�s death is incredibly sad, and I know that there is no point in speculating as to why he did what he did, but I certainly do not think that he took the �easy option�. Anyone who says that he was selfish is displaying their ignorance and god they make me angry! Hessie was by all account an extremely human-oriented person, and I am sure that he did what he did because he thought it was the right thing to do by everyone at the time. He was wrong, of course, and I believe that his thinking was affected by �something�, and I think that that something was bipolar disorder. That is a very presumptuous statement, I know, and I apologise to pharmgirl. I totally agree with your feelings and thoughts, Love&Peace.
quote:
Originally posted by MattR:
[qb]Anyone who says that he was selfish is displaying their ignorance and god they make me angry![/qb]
Yeah...I've never understood the idea of people judging those who've committed suicide, either. I can't even begin to understand what possessed Paul to do what he did. Do I wonder? Sure. I've wondered many times-and I'm still as baffled now as I was the day I heard the news. I'm very sad he's gone, obviously, and I wish that things hadn't ended this way for him. But I don't know what was going through his mind that night, so I don't feel I have the right to judge him for doing what he did. And besides, judging them doesn't do anything, anyway-at least, I don't feel it does. It doesn't make the person come back, nor does it help take care of and treat those who still feel the way Paul did.

People are entitled to react however they wish to a suicide. It's just that this particular reaction doesn't make sense to me personally *Shrugs*.

Angela
Yes I agree with you again Matt - nothing makes me more angry, and sad, than people's reactions to suicide as being selfish and cowardly, taking the easy way out - how easy it is to stand in a place of complete wellness and physical, emotional and chemical balance and make such judgements and say such ignorant things - how much courage and strength do you think it would take to end your life?? to feel that everyone in your life would be better off without you, and then to actually do it !
When Andrew Denton interviewed Rene Rivkin last year,Rene recounted his constant battle and struggle in living with Bipolar Disorder and Depression and his regular thoughts of wanting to end it all,to have some peace, and Denton asked him why he then hadn't done it yet, and he outright said "because I'm too much of a coward.!".

And yes Sunday - 54 days and it doesn't get any easier, the sadness is so immense still and the loss so huge, Hessie was and will always be one of a kind, a true original - they definately broke the mould - he will never be forgotten.

.....I hope he was dreaming of glory, miles above, mountains and valleys .... free at last.....!
When my brother comitted suicide I can't tell you some of the hurtfull things people said to me,people who were my supposed 'friends' saying things like he's going to hell now etc.Well you know what, you don't need friends like that and I told them where to get off.Until you've been there you have know idea how it will effect you, he left no note,nothing we were clueless and tearing yourself apart trying to find answers is next to useless it won't bring him back.I just hope he's at peace now.He was a crowdies fan so I hope he is up there showing Hessie a good time,he was a bit of a jokester too!

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