Yesterday, I found out that a friend of mine was diagnosed manic depressive or bi-polar late in her life. I was stunned, because I had not noticed any of the obvious symptoms that people with this disease display. The late Janet Collins was a Renaissance woman. Truly gifted and creative in many areas; she broke the color barrier as the Metropolitan Opera’s first African-American prim a ballerina. Her stint at the Met was brief and she later toured with Katherine Dunham and Lester Horton’s companies.
She also taught dance, choreographed, designed her own costumes, and commissioned music for her dance pieces. She was also a gifted visual artist. Janet was not diagnosed as bi-polar until well into her later years. I find it extraordinary that she was able to work past her demons and continue to create works of art and dance. Being artists, many of us struggle with depression and our creative dreams. As artists, we are vulnerable to depression by just being artistic. We have even more significant vulnerabilities if we experience any type of abuse in our childhood. Like a shooting star, Janet Collins reached her pinnacle. Her legacy was breaking the color barrier on the Met stage and paving the way for African-American dancers.
The Blog, Black and Blue is not a substitute for direct, personal, professional mental medical care and diagnosis. None of the advice, or natural therapies and supplements mentioned should be used without clearance from your physician or mental health care provider. The information contained within this blog is not intended to provide specific physical or mental health advice, or any other advice whatsoever, for any individual or company and should not be relied upon in that regard. I am not a licensed mental health therapist and nothing on this website should be misconstrued to mean otherwise.