Glasgow Scott McIntyre has been dogged by depression for most of his adult life. After years of medication and therapy, the 39 year old goldsmith finally finds life is on the up.
For most of my adult life, I’ve been dancing in the dark with depression. My family and I truly have been to hell and back. Certain events in my have life resulted in my questioning my existence and contemplating taking my own life.
To suffer from mental illness is all-consuming. A dark, jagged blanket smothers you and won’t let you out. Everything appears lost. Visions fill your head, thoughts wander in and out your mind, whispers filter their way to your ears, prodding, probing, suggesting, hating. An offer to help comes your way but you can’t trust it. You’re stuck and you don’t want to budge. You envisage yourself being dragged, kicking and screaming into the light, hands tearing at you, scratching, wounding, hurting.
You’re trapped, and there’s no way out. Except, this simply isn’t true. It may not feel like it at times, but there is a way out. Either you or someone you know has beaten this damn thing and is getting on with rebuilding their shattered lives.
I soon realised that my job of making jewellery was a form of therapy. It became quite clear that I felt most comfortable while I was working. The level of concentration required seemed to block out any demons. Making all these beautiful, sparkling pieces guided me down a different path, one where I felt free, a place without the darkness of depression or anxiety.
So while I may have the odd relapse – the occasional day where everything is a problem and nothing makes sense – I know that I’m through the worst. With love, care, effort and a whole heap of time, I actually feel normal again. I know that I am lucky and I am aware that so many others perhaps can never see the way out. But you can and you will. Words are easy to write but actions take bravery. Be bold. Ask, talk, do whatever it takes.
With head free of demons, the vision of opening a jewellery school in Glasgow’s city centre has kept my mind active, with a clear objective to aim for. And now, after teaming up with my friend and industry trailblazer, Kate Pickering, the dream is alive.
We feel that the Vanilla Ink Jewellery School can help not just for those suffering with their mental health, but for those within the industry who feel frustrated with their skills or treading water within their business. That’s where we will come in - to fill the gaps within our trade and enhance jewellery making for everyone.
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