The obvious result of depression is suicide, but there are those who do not want to go out alone in the misery, so they commit violent acts, including murder and acts of terror before taking their own lives and/or having someone else take their lives.
But depression also kills in a more subtle manner that not only has long-lasting effects, but is costly in a couple of ways.
Depression takes hostages … can become a lifelong state of living.
Depressed people are not just sad … regardless of how good or bad their life may appear to others, depressed people often feel unfulfilled, dissatisfied, and empty. Contrarily, depressed people often feel resentful and angry, acting out their depression with constant judging, complaining, and sarcasm towards others and against themselves.
Depression can affect anybody and it does affect people from all walks of life because depression does not discriminate.
While appearing quite successful in my early thirties, with a heavy feeling of sadness, frustration, and surprise, I booked an appointment with a psychiatrist because that was the common course of action. Within minutes I was handed a prescription because the doctor said I was clinically depressed, meaning the depression had sunk into my body and my body would need help. Something in the pit of my stomach knew pills were not the answer, so after I walked out of his office door, I threw the prescription in the trash and never looked back.
The first person I headed for was my mother, who told me things about my past I had not remembered … surprising, even shocking things that were like pieces of a puzzle clicking into place, making things and me make more sense. I was elated.
But not everyone felt the same way. No one wanted to talk about what I needed to talk about. However, my employer offered an employee assistance program providing paid-for services to help their employees stay healthy in all ways and I needed someone to talk with me to help me understand my state of being and how to change it.
No quick fixes, but the time spent opened my mind, not only to my buried wounds, but also my buried dreams. Dreams about who I really wanted to be … who I really was underneath the weight of all I had become to look normal, happy, and successful based on people’s expectations.
The psychological experience, though daunting, often painful, and even shocking righted the course of my life, well, at least put me on the best path for me.
Not everyone was happy. In fact, I lost a lot of friends and family, but they liked who I had become not who I really was. And frankly, they were also very confused as was I.
But I was happier than I had been.
I did not have all the answers and the journey to fully become the person I knew I could and wanted to be was a rough, rocky road, filled with many detours and pitfalls, but I was developing the ability to respect myself and do as I needed to do, rather than just what other people thought was best for me.
The science of psychology, rather than pharmaceuticals, served me well … until I hit the wall.
The wall was built out of emotions I was not yet equipped with to handle in a healthy way.
You may be familiar with the saying, “If I only knew then what I know now …” I am not sure of the source of the saying, but the truth I am sure has coursed through many minds as people discover the truth wisdom reveals.
Reaching beyond science, I turned to the metaphysical world of study looking for a more sound way to deal with the tumultuous sea life is for us all. Up and down round and round our emotions throw us. Shutting down and ignoring emotions, I knew from experience, was not the answer, but just another problem … as was the world and all the horrible things inflicted on people.
Meditation and quieting the mind did not work for this very active, creative, problem-solving mind, though I felt the benefits of yoga and my walking meditation. Still, as I grew more into me, I wanted something not yet defined.
Then it hit me when I saw a movie titled, “The Longest Spear.” I wanted what one of the lead women had as she stood vulnerable, yet filled with faith and love to bear whatever the consequences may be for being where she was and doing what she was doing. Terrified, she stood her ground peacefully and I watched with wonder and amazement as the true story unfolded.
I would like to tell you I achieved her level of peace that day, but I did not because I fought against what it was going to take me to acquire the peace she had and I hungered for. I fought for years. I fought with my logic and practicality. I fought with my rational mind. I fought with my religious scars.
But then I gave up the fight because I wanted peace more than anything else.
I wanted to be able to go to sleep at night without worry keeping me awake. I wanted to wake up in the morning and be able to embrace the day. I wanted to not be swung around by my emotions caught up in the whirlwinds and tornadoes of life, other people’s dramas, and what is going on in our world.
As someone driven to research and learn, going straight to the source I realized was the one avenue I had not yet pursued and it was time I did.
Reading the Bible is not easy, especially if we start with the Old Testament, which is all about the times before Jesus came. There was a lot of nasty stuff happening and the good it seemed not so visible. Discovery of what is called an amplified Bible (I bought Joyce Meyer’s Everyday Bible) finally made the Bible more accessible, helping me work with my wounds and angst about abuse and violence in a healthier way so I could read the Bible to soak up the good news.
The whole idea of the Bible is that it is a learning device to help us develop a personal relationship with God. And the only way the Bible tells us we can have a personal relationship with God is by going through Jesus.
You can believe in God and not believe in Jesus, but why would we choose not to believe in Jesus when believing in Jesus connects us directly with God and provides us with the peace we need to live in this world unafraid, worry-free, respectfully, and lovingly?
“Peace I leave with you,” Jesus said. The only price we have to pay is giving up our ego’s misguided idea we have to know and do everything for ourselves, plus the misguided idea life is just misery. When we discover and accept God, Jesus, and the Holy Spirit is on our side we discover the joy and wonder of life.
What dies instead of us is depression’s hold on us … this I share with you as my truth with the hope you too will break free of depression’s hold upon you and live as you were meant to live … free to choose what rules us.
April 11, 2018
KAITLIN ANN TREPANIER
Human/Animal Rights Activist Social Scientist Founder Entrepreneur Author Artist
Connecting The Dots With The Respect Principle
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