Depression: A Household Word

Depressions has become such a common problem today that everyone knows at least one person who suffers from it, or are finding it hard to trudge through another horrid day themselves.

I have also been stuck in this nightmare of an existence as long as I can remember. My earliest memory of being depressed was when I was only 2 years old. I could cry for hours at a time and I didn’t even know why. I would hide in my room or in my playhouse all day, sniffling and drying my tears on my baby dolls’ dress.

All through my teenage years my depression didn’t fair any better. I was so good at hiding my misery that my own mother had no idea how I was feeling.

A survival mechanism that I used all too often was getting into trouble. I craved for someone to notice me, to talk me out of my sadness, so getting into lots of trouble was one way people would talk to me. As you can imagine this wasn’t in my best interest and after getting caught for many stupid mistakes didn’t allow me to discuss my issues at all, but rather I’d get grounded or put in ‘solitary confinement’ which actually made me feel even more depressed. Spending time alone just gave me more time to think my way into an ever deeper depressed frame of mind.

By the time I got pregnant with my first child I had a very poor self image and extremely low self esteem. My baby made me hopeful though, I was convinced that this person would love me no matter what, and that would some how cure me of my dis-ease.

After giving birth to a beautiful, healthy baby girl, my dreams of being a happier person were soon dissolved. Depression had hit me harder then ever, but now I could not run and hide. I had the responsibility of a new life in my hands and could not, would not let her suffer like I had.

You probably can guess what I did. I buried my insecurities even deeper. I completely ignored any and all of my own needs to be sure my child was happy. There were times I thought I would completely loose my sanity and contemplated suicide on more then one occasion. The only reason why I decided not to take my own life was the fact that my child would end up suffering because of my actions, and my child’s unhappiness was not an option.

I continued to pull myself out of bed each day and stick on my fake happy face. No one could see how ugly I was inside for fear I would be completely alone with no friends what so ever. I would fall out of love with people just as fast as I had fallen in love with them, which left me feeling even lonelier. I was pushing 30, a single mother and no hope of feeling better anytime soon. This went on for years while my heart was heavy with grief and loneliness.

Desperate for someone to love me I continually got myself into relationships with alcoholics. I figured they were worse off then me, and thought that would make me feel better about myself. Of course that didn’t work; it only made me feel worse knowing that I wasn’t enough to make them change their selfish ways.

When my daughter started school I decided to further my education too. I got a lay off from my employer and went to college to earn a business degree. Surely this would make me happy…I would get a good job and shower my child with anything she wanted. If I couldn’t be a happy person, at least I would be able to make someone else happy.

I finished my courses, got a good paying job with great benefits but the stress was too much for me to handle. I ended up at my doctor’s office begging for her help. She gave me a prescription and an appointment with a Psychologist.

The pills seemed to help me for a while, but I was soon dependent on them. As for the visits with the shrink, they made me feel even worse! She only brought to the surface the many years of pain that I had tried so hard to avoid. Even if it were a good day, I would leave her office with puffy, red eyes, sore from streams of steady salty tears. I didn’t say much when I was there, but it was like she could see through me. She once told me that I looked like someone who was trying to hide my shame. Shame of what I didn’t know, but she was right. I felt that shame since I was a small child but had no idea why. The more I tried to answer why, the worse I felt about myself. I was just too stupid to figure it out!

Looking from the outside in nobody had a clue of my deep depression until after I found myself in and out of just one more dreadful relationship and pregnant once again. I didn’t want anymore children to be responsible for. I had to pull of the miracle of providing my daughter with a fun filled life, how the heck would I be able to handle any more?

Of course there are choices when it comes to unplanned pregnancies; there is adoption, abortion, leaving the baby on the stoop of a nice family or church, letting family raise the baby; but I decided to keep it. I had a certain amount of faith that God wouldn’t give me anything I couldn’t handle, I made this mess and I was just going to have to deal with it. The thoughts of abortion would make me cringe…taking a life?! I knew this would only add to my depression and guilt for the rest of my life. I made this baby out of what I considered to be love at the time, so my mind was made up.

Then came the clincher. I was going to have twins! Oh My God! Maybe I was wrong. Maybe God just plain forgot about me and didn’t see all those years of suffering I went through. He must realize this would kill me! It must be a mistake. What will I do and where will we end up?

I moved back in my mother and was thankful everyday for having her in my life. I wasn’t completely alone and if it weren’t for her, things would have been so much worse.

Times were hard and all the gifts that had once showered my only daughter were becoming distant memories as I had a hard enough time just to keep food in her belly.

My depression grew stronger, I started to drink too much, and worst of all I started having thoughts of hurting my babies. The thought of ending it all was an urge I had to fight off daily.

The stress was much too hard to keep hidden any longer. I could find no reason for life, it was meaningless to me. I completely lost all hope and one night after drinking a little too much wine I talked openly about suicide to my mother. The littlest things would make me cry and I felt I would never be happy, so what was the sense of living.

They say the darkest part of the day is just before the dawn and I agree 110%. Telling someone for the first time how I really felt was my darkest day, but talking about it created space inside me where the Light was finally able to shine through.

Things started happening to me and in my life that lit the way. I started reading self-help books and learned about Spirituality. My best friend at the time introduced me to Kabbalah and the rest you can say is history.

Each day was a bit better then the last, there was hope after all and I was finding answers to the many questions I had like why are we here, where do we come from, where do we go when we die, and what Gods master plan really is. It started to make sense and connecting to my soul helped me finally feel love in the purest way.

Prescription medication for depression is a thing of the past for me because of many reasons, but the first thing you have to do to begin digging yourself out of the darkness is to Love Yourself. You must put yourself first or you will have nothing to give to others no matter how hard you try.

“To thine own self be true” should be the number one Commandment, for without this, nothing can grow or flourish into what it was meant for.

Stop worrying about the ‘whys’ in your life…why me, why do I feel this way, why can’t I just get ahead…why, why, why!? Knowing the answers may only make it worse. Instead, just realize there is a part of you that is pure, is Love, is in fact a piece of God himself. Begin by loving that part of you first. Know that it’s there, that its real and your love for yourself will expand.

Don’t dwell on your mistakes, only learn from them. Don’t keep horrid memories of the past vivid in your mind – it isn’t healthy for anyone to keep those pictures alive day in and day out. The past is over with; forget about it, the future hasn’t even happened yet so who knows what it’ll bring; worrying about it doesn’t give you power over any of it. All you have is this moment, so start right now.

Start with feeling a tinge of love for yourself, do nice things for YOU, just as you would someone else you love. Be kind and stop the self destructive thoughts about yourself. Replace them with loving thoughts; point out to yourself the good things about you. You need to care enough to at least try. The rest will take care of itself. Practice self Love and you will be shown the way to ever brighter days filled with more joy then you can possibly imagine.

Life isn’t about suffering or depression, it’s about abundance, Joy and Love. We need to cure this world of needless stress and worry and the first step begins within you.

You Can Do It, and you Better Believe You Are Worth It!