This is what happened to me with art, and it still does to quite an extent. Depression makes you think that everything you do is futile, and hence anything you do creatively is really affected. Getting the motivation to do something creative, and then try to do it without your critical eye going overboard on the self-hate. Suddenly, there is no satisfaction in what you do, only frustration, which naturally hammers on your motivation to continue it further. Then without the practice, the skills required to do the creative work suffer. (This happened to me with my previous work Sexy Losers and it still affects me to that day — but oddly, only with that work. Drawing depression comix characters is easy, but putting the pen to paper for Shiunji or Mike is a lot harder. I intended to do some new SL strips this year but found that the block was still there.)
Finally, at some point, the work you did seems unattainable, like some clone of you who is superior than you did it and you get bewildered that you could have possibly done that because it’s not within your ability now. You start to beat yourself up mentally and motivation further slides. Before you know it, you haven’t picked up that pencil or guitar or freeweight or whatever for months and you find yourself detatched from the thing you used to love. Then you see other people doing what you used to be doing and achieving what you dreamed of, and you feel the true weight of what you lost. You feel the world turning without you in it.
For this strip, we have Robin and her unnamed friend (who has been around the strip longer than Wren, since #59). Unfortunately the weight of the Wren/Robin relationship doesn’t allow me to really allow Robin to open up, but she will open up to her best friend. I have the feeling that Robin doesn’t open up to Wren because she’s still afraid of rejection — she feels loved but she’ll never feel safe. With depression, I guess you never really feel safe.
There are a lot of two people walking and talking strips lately. Unfortunately, next update is more of the same. The week after I’ll have to make sure to do something different. Maybe eating and talking?