I have been wanting to write a post on this for awhile, but for some reason I haven’t been able to find the words. Maybe it is because it is very personal or because it covers things that you can’t understand unless you have been through it. I’m not even sure if I will accomplish it tonight but I am going to try.
The ‘blessing’ started last September. The part that is hardest for me to understand was that this ‘blessing’ started when a ‘real’ blessing happened. Hansen came home in September after a year of being gone and that was wonderful but at the same time, I had this dark spot in my mind. No matter what happiness was going on in my life I couldn’t shake this dark spot. Nothing seemed to help, in all honesty most happy things made it worse. I was in a terrible cycle of not being able to shake this and being upset with myself for not being happy which in turn made me more upset which made me feel worse… well you get the idea. I had become what I consider to be a ‘couch mom’. No matter what I did or what I tried I couldn’t get myself to interact with my kids. I couldn’t bring myself to get off the couch.
After a HUGE break down Hansen convinced me that I needed to go talk to someone and figure out what was going on, because sitting on the couch wasn’t cutting it. I was scared. Scared that they would tell me I couldn’t be a mom anymore or that something was really wrong but they didn’t know what. I remember sitting in my car, looking at my hands and realizing that they were shaking. I couldn’t get them to stop. No amount of breathing or holding could calm them down.
The first words out of the Dr’s mouth were, “Being here doesn’t make you any less of a mom then anyone else”. Those were the exact words that I needed to hear. That one sentence let me know that this was fixable and that I wasn’t the only one that felt this way. I could finally breath. Breath because I knew that I didn’t have to be ashamed of me anymore. I could breath because depression is real. I have only met with that Dr once but he kept reminding me that being depressed didn’t make me less of a woman, mom or wife, it just meant that I needed a little help to get back to where I wanted to be.
I came home that night with a bottle of meds, some reassurance but a whole new set of worries. I knew that I needed the meds to help me function and get to where I wanted to be but I was scared of the label that would be placed on me if I let people know that I was taking them. It didn’t matter that I knew being depressed didn’t make me a bad person, it mattered because I was worried about what people would think.
At Christmas our families were supposed to get together at our house and have a big celebration because the boys were home and it was Aydens first Christmas. That didn’t happen. Because of many reasons feelings were hurt and the blame was put on me. One side of the family was here and noticed that I had greatly improved, I still had a long way to go till i was back to ‘normal’ but I was at least able to get up off the couch and function. I really wrestled for a couple days over the accusations. I cried and prayed and came to realize that if I apologized for something that I had no control over then I would be telling them that I cared what they thought.
Slowly over the months I have been able to come out from behind the clouds and start figuring out what kind of a friend, wife, mom and woman that I want to be. I would have never thought that being depressed could be a blessing. I never thought that being depressed would make me look at my life and realize every little blessing that I have. Depression has made me realize just how much I have been blessed but didn’t realize it because it was covered with ‘clouds’. Clouds of abuse of every kind, pain because of friendships, pain of lost dreams, and pain of plans gone bad. The words to this song fit this topic so well… http://www.klove.com/music/artists/laura-story/songs/blessings-lyrics.aspx
So many times we look at bad things being a problem. Many times they are at the time but later can turn into blessings. The biggest blessing I have found from my depression, at the moment, is that I don’t need to please everyone around me. It is OK to think about myself every once in awhile. I think many times as women we worry about what others think to the point that we forget about ourselves. I know that I am guilty of that and have a really hard time taking the time to focus on me. Even something as small as taking a shower everyday is hard for me because I see it as time that I could be doing something for my kids, husband or friends. Through this depression I have realized that I can’t take care of my family if I don’t take care of myself, even if it is a simple as taking a shower at some point during the day.
There are many more story’s to add to my blessings list but I think I will stop with this story. The depression journey is not over for me. I still have a ways to go before I reach the end of the tunnel. I will keep writing about it and hope that my story will help someone else.