Saturday, August 22, 2015

Sharing about Depression

This article explains what it is like to have depression.  I was depressed as a young adult, and it was just the way the author describes.  I lived in a beautiful city. It was frustrating to walk down the street, to see the architecture, the flowers, the people, to know it was beautiful, and not be capable of enjoying it.  I stayed in my room a lot. I felt ashamed for not being thankful.

I could describe the hikes I took, the sketches I made, the books I read, the music I sang, trying to pull myself out of that hole. I was in college. I changed majors, I moved colleges, I quit school.

I nannied for the sweetest little girls and the kindest employers in the most beautiful city. My family loved me and was concerned for me. They tried to help.  Church folks were amazing and wonderful. They accepted and loved me and were always glad to see me.  But nobody understood.

One day as I drove back to the city from a visit to my family and church, I realized I was imagining what it would be like to run my Honda into the barricade on the freeway and just end it. Life stretched out before me, decades of emptiness that I must fill. It seemed like so much work.  Then I realized I was contemplating causing an accident on the freeway. I could hurt others as well as myself. That was my thinking self. My feeling self was saying, "It hurts, it hurts, it hurts. Oh, the pain. Make it stop." I got very scared.

I decided I wasn't safe to operate heavy machinery. I returned my car to my parents. I told them I didn't need a car in the city, cars were a major cause of pollution, and it was too hard to keep it parked when I wasn't using it. I didn't tell them I was suicidal, which I should have, but I didn't.  I didn't want to worry them.  Instead, I told them I needed therapy for the eating disorder which was also going on.  I had done some therapy sessions when first diagnosed the year before, but hadn't started anything new since moving.

My therapist's name was Priscilla. She was lovely and so patient. Her voice was soft. She asked good questions. She never rushed.  She had a beautiful office in the beautiful city, and as I went to her, I began to enjoy the beauty again.  Talk therapy was wonderful for me. 

Eventually, I married Bradley. I began to live again. I've had other depressive times, and it has gotten bad, but never to the extent of that year, thank the Lord.  

I'm writing this because it is part of my story. I've not talked much about it because it is hard for people to hear. But there it is. I believe firmly in talk therapy. Talking things out helped me a lot. Some people need medication for depression, and if that helps, I say do it.  Also, if you have never been depressed or anxious, please be patient with depressed people. I know it's hard to understand, and it feels so helpless to watch and not know how to help.  But please. Be patient. Do research. Learn. See if you can maybe understand a little. Lay off the morality side of things a bit and simply listen.

If you are depressed, reach out. Keep reaching out until someone listens.  Message me if you want. ( And remember, you are here. We want you. Stay.  Live your wild and precious life. Redemption comes in strange places, small spaces... Stay.

1 comment:

Lynn Bruce said...

Well done. I love you and your wild and precious life.