For the past few months I have been depressed. Yes depressed…. Now to those who know me, reading that first sentence, the first thought might be “really! how?” But let me tell you…
“I did not need to visit a doctor… I felt it… or rather I did not feel”
I searched online for the symptoms that one may have while depressed and they all fit me perfectly. The fatigue, the emptiness, the sleepless nights, the hopelessness and worst of all the irritability. But I could not tell anyone.. I kept it in for fear that I would be judged, for fear that I may need help, and for fear that I could not and would not get better. So I kept it in.. and for months I suffered alone… I could not write anymore, my body started feeling the effects and I could not feel – I felt almost nothing.
I defaulted to YouTube… Because recording for an audience to see meant you would have to put on a smile right?!?! so I used that as a means to try and feel something… and it worked… but only for how long I was infront of the camera. I made sure I went to church, because being in the house of the Lord makes us feel safe and protected right?!?! that too lasted only so long. I buried my head in my studies and stayed up late “studying” as an excuse for my insomnia …
“…this continued for months and I kept it all in and had no avenue of releasing
all the frustration, anger, pain and hurt that I felt except through crying
… I trusted no one enough to understand what I was going through….”
I got depressed to the point that I cried myself to sleep almost every night and walked with an invisible mask that I put on everyday so no one would see my pain or see me hurting. I smiled because that’s what everyone expected – but it hurt so much to smile. I had gotten to a point where I used food as my escape and ate ALOTTTT, much more than I usually do, and more unhealthy than I usually do… Yet still – even in my own pain – I tried to provide comfort to others who may have been hurting too.. but who was there to provide the same for me?… who could I talk to about this feeling of emptiness and hopelessness that continued for months??… no-one I thought … and so I kept it all in..
But one day I snapped… I snapped and I could not control it… My husband asked me one question and all the emotions that had been locked away for months came rushing at me like a river bursting its banks. I was mad.. so mad that I packed up a suitcase and was ready to leave and told him I wanted a divorce… so mad that I zoned out while driving and had no recollection of having been on a particular road.. so mad that a minor incident gave way to me posting nasty, hurtful comments without feeling any sense of remorse or concern… My younger sister tried speaking to me and asked why I stopped writing because this is not me and something must be wrong and I just uttered “ok” because it felt pointless saying anything else …
“I SNAPPED!!! and I had no control over it… Or so I thought….”
But I strangely felt a sense of release and freedom… a sense that a weight had been lifted off my shoulders… I started to feel alive again… And it was then I started questioning myself, in my own little space – what brought this on??
“Then I had an epiphany…”
It was while cleaning my daughter’s room and re-arranging and putting everything into place, thoughts started going through my mind. The last few months played in my mind like a movie and I was the audience. And in those thoughts I felt hurt…. unaccomplished…. a failure. I felt like I was sitting on a bench just watching the world and everyone move right past me. I felt ……….. Lost
It was in those thoughts I realised the source of my pain and depression. It had been self- inflicted, because I thought I had to fit in to my definition of accomplishment in order to feel accomplished. I thought I needed to be the perfect wife and someone my husband would be proud of but yet I never felt appreciated as such. I thought I needed to show up as always being happy because that’s what everyone seemed to have come to expect, yet still I never felt complete. I thought I needed to be in an “awesome” job because everyone else seemed to have been moving ahead and upwards and I felt angry at myself for not pushing to that and “just settling”… But in that moment, while in my daughter’s room I thought I needed to be a good mother … and in that thought I felt my heart melt … in that one thought…. in that one moment. That was the one thing I felt like I had done and done well… but yet in the past few months of wanting more, and trying to achieve my status of “accomplished” I had neglected to nurture and pay greater attention to my “real accomplishments”…
In all the pain I was going through, I never lost sight of my two most precious gifts.. On days when I felt like giving up they were right there in my thoughts bringing me one step closer to myself. On days when I pretended my eyes were burning and looked teary they were there… on days when they saw my tears and I answered their “what’s wrong mommy?” with an “I’m ok, my eyes just feel a little painful and itchy”- they were by my side comforting me and making sure I felt better. When all else seemed to have been falling apart around me, these two small, but ever so significant, parts of me stood strong and remained my light that kept me going…. and in that moment in my daughter’s room – I cried-… I cried because I felt… I felt loved and appreciated …
“I felt healed…”
I may not have the job that I dreamed to have, but I am happy with what I do. I may not be at the point I would have wanted to be in my “life’s plan” for myself, but the “plan” I am currently living I would not change it for the world. And though I may sometimes feel unworthy I just remember that even in all my “unworthiness” God still loves me and takes care of me… and there are people who love me too and I am thankful for that.
I am still healing and this is the first time sharing with anyone… and even this piece does not include half of actual events but I guess I will have to save that much detail for a book *smile*.
Healing takes time, and there are moments when I slump back for short periods into that depressed state, but I am learning more and more to accept the person I have become and to love what I have been blessed with and to just know that ………
I AM ENOUGH !!!