Reflections on Depression

I wrote that last poem almost 10 years ago. I had just had a miscarriage, had failed to keep a church ministry alive, and could not find employment in my chosen career field.

I know what depression is. I know what it’s like to feel like there’s no hope, that life hurts too much to continue forward. I know what it’s like thinking that others are better off without you.

I had imagined all the ways to end it, but couldn’t find the strength to go through with it. There was also a spark of something within, probably God’s quiet spirit, that wouldn’t allow me to destroy something that He had created, as miserable and wretched as it seemed.

This all comes back to me as I read about the life a young man who gave up the fight. From everything his co-workers express, he was bright, funny, warm, and kind. I wish I’d known him. I wish somehow some small voice could have let him know how much his life was cherished, how much he was loved and appreciated by everyone around him, before he made that fatal choice.

Depression is a lot like a cloudy day. The light is closed off. It feels oppressive and overwhelming. The darkness gets greater and greater with each negative thought, with each self-doubt, with each “why me?” Then the storm clouds roll in and it’s almost beyond control. Everything seems black. Nothing matters. You do all you can just to subsist, to survive, to make it through one more minute.

Although medication can assist in coming out of a severe depression, ultimately, it is up to the individual to make a choice. You have to decide that you don’t want to be that way, that you don’t want to be miserable. You have to decide to look for the positive, to make goals, and to move toward them. You have to swallow your pride and seek help for your problems. No one expects you to do it alone.

If you are experiencing depression, don’t be ashamed. But don’t stay there. Choose life- the way it was meant to be lived.


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