When he was overwhelmed by depression this past May, Supernatural star Jared Padalecki pulled out of several publicity appearances, wisely choosing to snuggle into the supportive fold of his family, asking friends and fans for help and understanding. As Steven so eloquently wrote, the “scourge of depression” is “not being sad…it’s not about anything;” and though it’s also not something anyone else can fix for a person lost in its spiral, love can be an immeasurable gift.
I can only imagine how terrible it is to be in the public eye and trying to navigate through clinical depression. To lay oneself bare — in this age where from behind anonymous computer screens, we rip each other to shreds — requires courage and an exceptionally tough outer shell. It’s been heartening to see Padalecki showered with warmth and support, by his co-stars and fans alike. Those sentiments carried into Comic-Con’s Hall H this weekend, as the cast and crew of Supernatural gathered for a panel, and the moderator readied the audience to ask questions of showrunner Jeremy Carver, writer Andrew Dabb, and Padalecki and his co-stars, Jensen Ackles, Misha Collins. As the room of over 7,000 fans filled with the light of tiny candles held high, Padalecki didn’t at first realize what was happening; when it became clear, he was overwhelmed:
As always, the actor was humble and grateful:
From Padalecki’s Facebook page:
“A thank you. To anybody and everybody that had ANY part whatsoever in the Always Keep Fighting Hall H tea light event. As I travel back to Vancouver from San Diego Comic-Con, with my partners in crime Jensen Ackles and Mark Sheppard, the enormity of what happened is finally starting to sink in…. I am beyond moved. I feel so blessed, and grateful, and honored to be a part of the magical Supernatural Family. Sitting on that stage in Hall H, I initially mistook all of the lights for cell phone cameras. It’s difficult to discern specific shapes and faces with all of those stage lights shining on you (and, it’s quite intimidating up there, sitting in front of 6,500 people!!). Then, when I had a light given to me with an explanation of what it was and what it stood for, I was (and am still) gob-smacked. Thank you. From the very bottom of my heart and my soul, thank you so much. I will never forget this day. I will never forget the love that I felt, and still feel. And, to everybody who held a light for me, please know that I hold my light for you. Though I happened to be the one sitting on stage, I am but one small light in a see of thousands. TOGETHER, we can and will make a difference! Keep letting your light shine. I will do the same. And, keep fighting. Always Keep Fighting.”
I’m not crying, YOU’RE CRYING.