monday


Weekend over and back to work today– it’s going to be a busy one. Lots on the agenda at work and at home.  I leave for a work retreat over night Thursday night so that will be fun.   It was a good weekend,  spent some time outside pulled out the patio furniture – maybe a little early but seeing it makes me feel better.  Saturday was sunny and I spent most of the day cleaning out gardens picking up sticks.  Sunday cleaning up inside and putzing around, and had a nap, on the couch like a cat in the sun.  Time with friends, time with family, time with husband, went to church,  all the way it should be.

I was a little low this weekend. I haven’t been sleeping so I know that means watch out for the sadness incase it rolls in like a sudden fog off the water.    It did.   I turned my attention to praising God and ignoring the negative and repeating the positive.  Did the sadness just disappear, no,  I felt it, I just tried to work through it. Cleaned up stuff, did laundry, tried to take my mind off of it. In the long run I did ok. It’s just hanging on. Its Monday and I had another night of interrupted sleep.  I am back to a stepped up workout routine so we shall see if that helps.  I did 5 workouts last week and it didn’t help much, surely it will this week.

I prayed tonight with my Pastor his wife and my husband. It was a wonderful prayer time. God was with us and it was an evening of honesty and prayers of thanks.   It is a real blessing to sit with your best friends hold hands and pray.

An author; whose books we 4 have read, son, committed suicide. I didn’t know the boy but it strikes hard at your heart, only 27, good christian family – no drug abuse,  just died by his own hand.  It strikes hard at someone who suffers from depression.  A depression sufferer understands that the pain and anguish of depression that never leaves you.   Some days its better, some days its anguish.   It is a companion that never leaves your side. It is at the ready, as tight as your shadow.
In discussing things last night I don’t think some of them understood how when you are good you are never what you were, and when you are down you can never effectively communicate how dark and lost you are.   I was good last night but there were 5 of us praying I was #4 my depression #5.   Its like watching students in the hallway at school- they always have a knapsack on their back – mine is the weight of depression.

In the course of the evening, after I got home, I came clean about some of the things I had encountered over the past two years with my husband.  I hadn’t really told him that there were times that I thought about suicide, or the extent that I punished myself with not eating and belittled myself when I was down and couldn’t “pull up my boot straps” and get on with it.  I had told him that I had seen the line of suicide – and I did, I never thought how.   In truth; I did not think how to do it, but the consideration that death is a way to end the anguish  and how the line more encircled me instead of  just standing in front of me was true.  It is frightening today to think how far gone I was and how my husband, unbeknownst to him, saved my life one evening when I was alone in the dark.  Today it seems like a fantastical dream, but when I read my journal from those days, they reveal a death of spirit, and cornering of darkness, and a lost frightened girl.

The depression is the same today as yesterday, so how can it be different. It’s not drugs, it all goes back to one afternoon not long ago, laying on a couch looking at the clouds going by a window thinking I could have this for the rest of my life. I have harped on this before, but I have a strange peace from it and it has held on ever since then. The desperation of the illness seems to lessen. It has made it a part of my life. As I go through each wave the next down isn’t a surprise. I am not thinking on every up swing – “ok feeling good this is it”, only to be disappointed when the next down turn arrives. The second thing that seems to have changed for me is the words I read in the bible, Jesus always says when he arrives anywhere or an angel says when they are delivering a message in the bible, “don’t be afraid” Those words are said 380 times. You would think that we would be able to rely on those words. The dips I have had this week I have been telling myself “do not be afraid, and my trust in God”  seems to have increased so as the devil slithers around me and wants to strike fear in me I have not been afraid cause God is in control, Lord knows I am not. I maybe have come to terms with the fact that I have loss control of my mushy mind and set my expectations lower. Acceptance seems to have made a difference – for now.
Next once I get the specialist report, and decide my next drug plan, it is my plan to get off some of the more harmful drugs and keep on ones that are a little more – body friendly. Messing with them is never a good idea but I want to feel more like me and be able to cry at a good movie, love my husband a little more fully, and not feel the good feelings be pushed down with the bad feelings. First the doctor has to come through for me!! If I ever see that report.

till next time………………..

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do’s and don’ts


It dawned on me the other day that I have never done – do’s and don’t- for depression.  You know in my head it sounded better than what it looks like in print.  However, Over the past few years I have learned a few things.  If you follow my blogs you know I have done a lot of don’ts.

There is so much swirling when you fall down in a hole.  Swirling is a good word it embraces the action and sound.  You feel swept up and the sound it’s like a tornado swirling in your head.  I want to paint a picture of what it is like. Thursday night I fell in a hole.  The months leading up to this should have been a tell-tale sign that something was coming.  I go up and I go down, the last few months I have been like a ball bouncing.  Bounce up and down, hit the floor bounce up a little less in height, another bounce just as hard and a little less in height again.  Thursday I didn’t really bounce, I blipped.  All week I had been building up to the fall.  Its kinda like watching your cat about to roll off the couch, you don’t stop them because you think naw it’s a cat they are smarter than that but you know its going to happen.

Things that go through the mind on the slid.  I am not smart, I am stupid, I am a burden, I am unlovable, I hate this body, mind, being.  I am not worthy, why would any body–friend, co-worker, husband, kids , God, give a damn about me or anything I do.  These are hard words, but these are the words and darkness that go through this globe on my shoulders.  There is a darkness that follows you around, a negativity that colours all you do, all you think.  The dark voices – and I will use voices, but you could say thoughts, demons, negativity- pick one — they all make you feel crazy.  But this is where the battle of depression happens.  In the mind and it is a battle grounds.  It confuses your words, your thoughts, it bends what you think you have straight. It twists your faith, what is truth. You think things you would never, or have never thought of before, and you are shocked.  If you have ever seen a battle field you know the grounds are never the same again.  They are hurt, broken, manipulated, not pretty, well groomed or ever the same. That describes  your mind and heart, they will never be the same again. 

Physically, I look down- seems a weird statement but its like a piece of wet wood in the sun.  I start to curl.  I don’t look at people, my heart races, I find it hard to breath, sometimes I feel faint, I fidget, shake, tremble  from the depths of my being, I usually end up in a ball on the couch or my bed.  My body hurts, my head aches, it almost is like getting the flu.  To do anything takes all the energy you have. You sleep when you shouldn’t, you blink at the ceiling most of the night when you should be asleep.  You can not concentrate, you can’t multi task, any negativity is like nails on a black board you want to put your hands over your ears and scream.  You don’t remember things.  There have been evenings where I have had to ask my husband what happened the night before or I find messages I sent on my phone that I have no memory of sending.

What do you do? I retreat, I hide, I am uncooperative, argumentative, I don’t want to go out. I don’t care, I spend too much money – that I do not have, I stay up late cause I am angry, I stop eating, I drink too much, I work out too much as a punishment for not being in control.  I try to control what I can, thus I don’t eat, don’t sleep.  If I sleep the darkness comes in. I text stupid things to people late at night. I put outrageous things on Facebook. I remove any pictures of me from the net. I want to get into a car and drive till I run out of road or gas, I don’t care what comes first. I don’t shower, care how I dress, what my hair is like, or any other grooming, nails feet etc.

What do you believe?  You don’t believe that God is real, the devil is creeping around you promising you peace in a nice dark place and when you get there, its screaming and everything but peace. Everything you believe in as truth becomes muddy and you know longer trust your thoughts or what you believe in because it all becomes a blurr.

These are the things that happen when you fall. This is what happens to me.

The don’t s  : Don’t mix anti anxiety meds with wine.  It only makes the hole wider and deeper that you are going to fall in.

Stay away from Social Media, don’t twit, tweet, facebook, text, bbm, email, or put anything in writing -you will not remember and in the morning you will be beside yourself with shame.  I shut off the phone give it to my daughter and she hides it.

Don’t OD on the meds.  I was falling last week and instead of taking 1/2 a pill when I needed. I was taking whole pills and doubled up on them and added a glass of wine with no food and sent myself  for a tail spin.

Don’t shop.  Shopping only makes you broke and you get stuff  you really don’t need.  It also puts you in a dangerous place.  I once had a panic attack at a housewares store, I walked back and forth with a bowl in my hand  for 45 minutes – I really thought the staff were going to call the cops on me.

Don’t not eat.  You don’t eat cause you hate yourself, and you can control what you put in your mouth but you are hurting your body physically more than you could ever know.  You need the energy to fight the battle.

Don’t drive when you are angry.  I don’t think I have ever mentioned this in a blog,  I have done some really dangerous things in my van because I was in a wrong mind frame and I should have never been behind the wheel.

Don’t lie– I can put on a really good face when I don’t want people, even my husband to know what I am feeling and where I am.  Be honest with the significant other in your life, be it friend, spouse, therapist. Someone need to know when you are slipping — its important.

The Do’s

First off there has to be rules.  You need a enforcer to make you abide by them.

Do drink tea.  When you are having an anxious moment or panic attack a beer or wine is the worse thing you can do — calming teas are so much better they help slow you down and stay away from coffee and pop too.

Do follow the directions on your meds.  You know they are there for a reason!

Do get some sleep – watching TV and channel changing till 2 in the morning makes it hard to get up in the morning.

Do go and spend time with friends.  Isolating yourself is not what you want to do.  Being around people is what you need and not at the mall.  Trust that people care, and they want to be there to be a shoulder to lean on.. and you know what — if they are not there to be leaned on, then maybe they are not true friends.

EAT.  Not eating only makes your body physically panic and that sets off the nerves and responses,  your body is already  in crisis from the chemical imbalance in your brain.  Food can counter act it.

Pray.  When I sit with my pastor my husband and my best friend and they pray over me – I  make greater gains  fighting this illness being covered over with prayer and protection from the darkness that lurks;  than in all the therapy I have taken.

Part two of Prayer – Do it for yourself.  When I open my arms and heart and say God I am not in control but you are.  All that I am and all that I have is yours. You put the earth on its axis who am I to demand anything from you for I am a poor miserable sinner.  Please help me fight the darkness with the light that only you put into this world.   When I give my self away – I gain my self.

Help– this all looks good on paper, like most best laid plans.  The thing is when you get the flu you need   rest and to look after yourself with meds, food, lots of liquids, and someone to help. This is an illness too.  You need the same prescription. Rest, meds, good food, lots of the right liquids and someone to help you — or just hold you while you cry.  You can’t survive a major  illness like cancer, flu, any type of surgery with out help from medical personal, loved ones, friends, even strangers.  This too is a major illness you need help.

Truth:  What is truth?  There have been times when the darkness in my head has screamed that  it wants me to say the lies to make them real.  God spoke the world into existence. The word became flesh in Jesus.  I firmly believe that if I voice the darkness in my head they will be come my new truth.  I have to adopt a mantra that God is truth and I will not voice the words in my head.  When I keep that going in my head it is my weapon in my battle.

I wanted to do this blog for two reasons, one, for those who suffer, again its like the flu.  You get sick and you get stupid– you are laying there with fever and chills and you forget to drink liquids.  You forget how to treat it cause you are the one sick– your too busy being sick to treat yourself. Two, for those who don’t suffer this is what it is like and these are the things that you can do to help.  If you are a significant other make a rule book.  I have to call my husband every time I take an anxiety pill.  If I get stuck somewhere due to anxiety or panic attack – he always has his phone on him I call.  For his part he knows me so well after 23 years together – he can tell by my face where I am.   I lose the light in my eyes and my face changes and he can see it. So can my best friends they can tell too.  It s a good plan. I don’t always follow it exactly cause you know I get forgetful when I am ill, but its a plan and its there for my protection.  And truly I don’t think I would be alive today if it were not for the people around me and the plan. I’m not trying to be dramatic – it’s just truth. Nature of the beast.

till next time………………………

Day after


Well it is the day after my prayer meeting with my husband and pastor.  My husband dragged me kicking and screaming.  I got there and couldn’t speak I was so afraid.  We talked for a bit we held hands and we prayed — well they prayed.  As they did God kept telling me to confess the sins of the body.  It is the verse of Jesus saying that the body is a temple for the holy spirit and we should treat it as a temple.  God clinched my heart and was not letting me leave my pastor’s office till I confessed.  I did. It was tough.  When my husband and I left we went to get something to eat– they know I haven’t been eating.  We went home and I did a couple of things and then I laid down on my bed and the tears started.  Actually more discriptive the sobs started I cried and cried what seems like a long time.  My husband held me for a long time and adventually I fell asleep.  Today I feel a little drained – not anxious- and not so down and all around better.  Its is amazing how being covered over with prayer is such a blessing

 

till next time……………….

Did someone hear a Crack?


My twig is cracking, I have been holding on for dear life but the twig is starting to crack – it is preventing me from sliding down the mountain I have been sliding down for a while.  I am looking wildly for a larger twig to grab but I can’t seem to see one.  I have been praying, I have been trying to keep my eyes up focused on God.  Sunday I dipped low and I was telling myself,  “I look to the hills from where does my help come from, It comes from the Lord the maker of heaven and earth.” I am trying to keep my concentration on God.  Its hard the mind is a storm of thoughts.  Today is Monday and I don’t have a whirl of thoughts I am just numb, no thoughts, no energy just numb.  I think this must be what its like to be high on drugs.  You feel nothing, you think nothing.  One of my readers said that you always  feel like you are crawling out from under something.  That is how I feel.  I get though this day, the next day it falls upon me, I crawl out again, but the dirt and grim of the last crawling never comes off.  The heaviness of it never leaves totally. The line from Shakespeare comes to mind “Out, damned spot! out, I say!” , Macbeth, 5.1 .  The spot of darkness never leaves, the spot of confusion, the spot of illness, the spot of numbness, stays upon my heart and mind.  I guess that is why it is hard to reach beyond the depression.

The soul and heart and mind are intermingled, and where is the line between? The line is a blur.  My heart will feel down cast and my mind try to cheer it up.  My soul cries out for God to come near, and he does but the mind is looking the other way, it can’t take its eyes of the grieving heart who is wondering where the mind, it knew and loves has gone.  The mind is confused and has forgotten to cheer up the heart, it barely remembers the heart and soul. The mind is caught in a storm like a feather in the wind.  God’s spirit, the Holy Spirit whispers in the wind to so the heart, mind or soul will hear it.  The Holy Spirit sits tight and still available to tell the thoughts of God and receive the inner crying of the soul, heart, and mind to take its deep groanings to God in prayer.  And the storm continues, the heart stays bruised, the soul cries and the mind flutters in the wind.  The Spirit is ever near, protecting from the evil and waiting for the mind to see and the heart to feel, and the soul to stop crying.

So tomorrow I start drug #3 hormones, and we will see what happens from there onward.

Lord I continue to pray for your forgiveness and protection, you have told me patience, but I am human, I don’t do patience well but Lord you know what is best for me and you know why I am going through this and I hope and pray that all these experiences can help those who go through this to have hope.  For God you are my only hope and I thank you for all the hope you give me.  Praise be to you Lord. Amen

Looking the wrong way!


I have spent a week feeling better not back to normal but better.  I still feel like I am on muddy ground since the last wave of depression ripped through my life, but at least I am standing and not face down in the mud.  It was a tough go – as you know if you read my previous blogs.  When I do I can not believe where my mind takes me.  The depth that the mind can take you is unbelievable. The darkness that I felt and seen is something I still can not believe I have experienced.  The things I have put my friends through when I have been out of sorts is embarrassing and shocking, but with out them I could never have gotten this far.  I am sure the same thing can be said by those who go through any life changing event in their lives. I am sure that anyone suffering from illness, loss, or any other heartache can say the same thing.—  How did I get here? where do I go?  Will I ever be normal? Will the pain ever end?

My bible study group this past week we were talking about the holy spirit and the spirit of prophecy and how there are spirits that say they are from God but are not.  Their message does not match the bible’s message. A friend in the study group tells us about a book she read.  It’s a little book called Heaven is for Real, it is written by a pastor whose son almost dies but comes back.  The son is a little boy but comes back and start;s over time, saying all these things about heaven and what he experienced when he was on death’s door.  My friend says something that I wrote down but have been thinking about ever since.  She talks about when she prays she tries to picture what heaven must be like.  She thinks about the majesty of God’s throne and Jesus the lamb of God sitting at his right hand.  She thinks of the angels singing and the grandness of the place where the throne would sit.  This picturing helps her settle her heart so she can remember who she is praying to.  That God is the God of all and creator of the earth the heavens and universe, and all the answers to all things come from him.  There is reverence in her prayers.

It struck me how my prayers have been lately.  I have been side tracked by a tricky mind that lets me down sometimes, gets side tracked by fear and darkness and depression.  It reminds me of a movie the Radiers of the Lost Ark.  The hero ends up in a pit of snakes, and fights them off with a torch of fire.  He is concentrating on the thing he fears that he doesn’t see the bad guys sneak up on him and trap him  in the tomb with the snakes.  My prayers have been in fear.  Instead of looking to God and remembering and imagining what Heaven would be like I was concentrating on keeping my eye on the darkness.  I didn’t want it to sneak up on me but in fact it did– cause it would play tricks on me distract me and keep me from focusing on God so I could pray the prayers and give God the attention that he not only requires, but deserves.  Thank God for the Holy Spirit interceding for me so when I was not correctly praying to God the Holy Spirit could groan to the Lord the prayers I could not pray.  Our focus plays so much on how we do things.  Tonight is Sunday night I have a lovely relaxing weekend.  My house is clean, the laundry is almost done.  I cooked a couple of nice meals,  read a bit took a nap today, but tonight it is still early and I am really tired and I am thinking, is it friday yet? My focus for this week if I keep this attitude will be long and tough.  When in fact I have some neat things to do this week to prepare for the end of the week and I need to relax get some sleep and enjoy what is about to happen this week. God gave me a strong body, a good job and I need to enjoy my work, my home life, and not wish the week away.

So this week I am going to try to keep my thoughts and feelings and prayers on what is heaven like and who is God and Jesus.  And not on the darkness that hides like a spider in the corner of a room, but keep my eyes lifted away from the fear and my heart on God and his majesty where it belongs.

God Bless you — till next time.

Friday TGIF


Well here I am at Friday.  I have been through a lot this week.  My apt with the therapist was hard and emotional.  I haven’t eaten since Sunday night, really – I did manage an egg on Wednesday I think, I am not sure what day it was.  I was sliding into sadness and loneliness again.  I could feel the darkness around me not as thick as before but for a few days it was following me.  Wednesday and Thursday I could not stop shaking, it was bad. It came from the centre of my being and radiated through my body.  My heart would beat fast, and I was having trouble catching my breath.  I was a mess.  There was a reason I was under attack.  My pastor, my best friend (his wife,) and my husband and I had planned a prayer session for me.  In my depression I have seen evil and darkness.  I have felt it rush me, circle me, follow me, engulf me.  Thursday, we covered me over with prayer.  We held hands and they prayed for a while, then they laid hands on me and prayed for me.  I shook like crazy, it was emotional and draining.  God was with me you could feel him.  We asked the Holy Spirit to come to us, we prayed protection not only for me but for them too, our collective children our marriages, it was a very very powerful prayer session.  When it was done we sat and huddled for a bit talked about depression the lies, our relationship with each other, the things I have been through, my therapy appointments.  We went to our respective homes and duties that needed to be done for the rest of the evening.  I went home to an empty house and stared at the ceiling for a while, collected my thoughts, till I had to pick up my daughter from field hockey. Got home, went to bed.

The next day- I tossed and turned a bit through the night but got up in the morning and had my coffee went to work and let the day sink in.  No shaking.  I felt calm, dare I say happy.  The last thing my friend prayed was that the peace that passes all understanding rest on me and there was peace.  Peace that I haven’t felt in quite a while.  I felt God near me, I felt Love well up in my heart where  days before loneliness dwelled. I felt happiness where I had felt sadness.  I went on my lunch break and caught a glimpse of my face in the mirror in the bathroom.  To be honest I had to take a second look. Who was that girl!  There was a gleam in her eye. A happiness in her face. It was wonderful.

So what happened – this is not hocus pocus!  A spell, a trickery, an illusion.    This is real life. This is real God. This is real Love.  If you suffer from depression then you know there is darkness there.  If you suffer from depression you know its a fight to try to trust your mind.  If you suffer from depression you know there are lies that try to steal everything away from you including your life. If you do not suffer you must believe that depression is not sadness it is a fight between good and evil.  When you are suffering you are wounded you are vulnerable. The devil senses that and attacks.  He lies, he misleads,  he tricks. You don’t know what thoughts to trust you don’t know what is truth.  You end up feeling like you are a burden to everyone, and that no one loves you, you isolate, you push away, you hurt yourself for allowing this illness to take all that was solid from you. I stop eating as my punishment.  I hide in my room. I allow the lies to convince myself I have no love and no one has love for me.  I can’t trust people cause they lie, they cheat, they don’t mean what they say.

God is Love he covered me over with his Love and tonight my heart is busting, I am crying at this moment.  Crying has been hard for me I have not been able to cry sad tears.  But these are happy tears.  God is the power of the universe.  He is the creator of the world of you of me.  Jesus is our brother who finds the lost children of God and brings them back. If they want to.  I want to.   Jesus died on the cross to break the bonds of sin.  We prayed in the name of Jesus to break the ropes of lies and darkness that in my weakness attached themselves to me.  Jesus set me free last night. He has wrapped his arms around me as my friends wrapped their loving arms around me last night.  I can still feel it today. God is near and I am drinking from my saucer cause my cup over flows from his Love. How good is God!

Am I cured!  No probably not. But in my weakness God has shown me his strength. In my weakness he has shown me a safe haven. In my weakness God has shown me his great Love, Grace, and  Forgiveness.  Could I have seen this in my strength.  I knew these things before my depression, then did I know them as deeply as I do now? No.  I have a chemical imbalance I am going through a change, that is caused by environment, DNA, hormones, or a combination of all of the above.  God takes these things and uses them to his good.  If you are reading this testimony – it would not be here if I have not been through the darkness of depression and felt a need to express my thoughts.

I pray for you that God may open the eyes of your heart and show you His great power and love.  God Bless you.

October Dr apt.


October Dr appointment follow up; besides being painful, a flu shot, it was the first Doctor’s appointment that I did not get an increase or change in prescriptions.  I am reprieved for 3 months.  So based on my previous posts in the last weeks how did I do it.  I told her I was feeling much better.  Not a total lie, I am feeling better except for this latest dip.  I have been feeling very sad, lonely and wanting to isolate myself the past week  Been taking my anxiety pills and that has made some things better. I guess you can say I did lie to the Doctor, but for good reason.  Its only been a month since my new pills, and I do not want anymore.  I want 3 months to see how I am doing and adjust.  Most of the side effects are gone from starting a new pill.  I still get dizzy spells, a little shaking but I don’t want to mess with the drugs anymore for now.  We will see what the new year brings.  I gained a huge 2 lbs in the last month so the doctor is not happy, that and another reason not to see her till 3 months, tired of being told off.   I have taken a break from some of my church activities. To be honest I would like to take a break from church, my husband would never let me and the kids need to be there.  I am still playing in the band but I am taking a break from Sunday School Music till the new year and the prayer group.  I am frustrated and tired.  I have been fighting demons over the past few days and I cannot pray any more.  I am in need of sleep and some time alone to gather myself. As this week ends I am not sure if I am sad or tired of the daily struggle.

Is this a new aspect of depression or of the time of year.  I was talking to a friend about Christmas,  I realized I just can not do Christmas this year.  It will be hard enough to get the decorations up.  But it dawned on me how afraid of Christmas I am.   Maybe some of this stress is from in-laws who I have only seen twice since last Christmas.  I have a dinner to go to next month and I am paralyzed at the thought of going.  I feel like I am a bunch of knots inside.

Jesus says in John 14:  do not let your heart be troubled Trust God and trust also in me (Jesus).  but I fear, I tremble,  I am unsure, paranoid.  I hate the helpless feelings that come with the loneliness and brokeness.  John 14:6  Jesus says I am the way the truth and life.  I know these things I know them in my heart, and in my head and in my soul. God also says come all those who are weary, I am weary but I will trust God I will try to resist the lies that I do not need God, church, and friends to complete me.  But everyone depressed or not need these things.

So I again ask God to forgive me in my denial of him, Forgive me in my closing of my heart, Forgive me in my isolation, I need to be under Gods wing and protected from the evil one.  Lord help to hear my Shepard calling my name and finding this lost sheep.  Amen