Just Be Still

Unless you’ve lived it, you probably won’t understand it.  It might even have a certain stigma attached to it.  But let me tell you, depression is serious.  It can be dangerous.  It can overtake your body and leave you defenseless. Depression affects millions of people all over the world, so most importantly, you’re not alone.  

I have been diagnosed with depression twice in my life.  The first time was shortly after I got married.  Lots of different life changes took a toll and I had a hard time dealing with things for a while.  I didn’t notice the signs of depression or know anything about depression.  My husband mentioned to me that he thought I might be struggling with depression a little bit, so I did some research online to check out the symptoms, and then met with a doctor who prescribed me some medication and counseling.  It seems like it didn’t take me very long to start feeling better.  The first medicine I tried worked and I went on to take that and another similar medication for several years.  

After being on medication for 6+ years, I decided I want to stop taking it.  I was feeling numb and I think that my body needed a change.  With the help from my doctor, I weaned myself off of my depression medications.  For the first time in years I had emotions.  I cried A LOT, but I think that was probably normal.  I went too many years without crying or being excited or being mad.. it took me a little bit to adjust to having emotions.  It felt good to cry, actually! :)

I was medicine free and happy for about 2 years, and then it hit me.  

Life is good.  I am incredibly blessed.  Time after time God has shown us that He loves us and we have been provided for like no other.  Although I felt happy and knew I SHOULD feel happy, I was starting to slip a little bit.  Again, life changes (LOTS OF LIFE CHANGES!) were a little hard for me to deal with.  Days turned into weeks, and weeks turned into months, and I was getting tired.  My tank was slowly leaking, and with each additional drop I was having a harder time bouncing back.  Deep down I knew what was happening, but I was in denial.  Thankfully, a coworker who cares for me pulled me aside and helped me come to the realization that I needed some help.  

I was diagnosed with depression for a 2nd time.  And this time, anxiety as well.

Unlike the first time, this time has been incredibly hard.  I started out taking the medicine I was already familiar with and that worked the last time.  I figured that this would be an easy fix since I’ve already been here before.  It’s a great theory, but this time that medicine didn’t work.  I stuck it out for 2 months, but my doctor helped me decide I needed to try something else.  Medicine # 2 knocked me down.. hard.  It took me places I never thought I’d go.. and it really scared me.  I feel so thankful that I was able to be aware of what was happening so that I could take care of it.  It worries me to think that some people get so wrapped up in it that they can’t step back and see what’s happening to them.  Right now, I’m trying a 3rd medicine and I’m praying that this one is the one for me.  So far, I feel like doing things I haven’t felt like doing in a long time.  I will take that as a sign of progress. 

I’ve debated writing a post like this.  Like I mentioned above, if you haven’t lived this yourself – you have no idea what I’m going through.  You really can’t sympathize.  You might be thinking, “My goodness, just snap out of it!”  Remarks like that are frustrating.  I can’t tell you how many times I wish I could just snap out of it, but that’s impossible.  Although I had been diagnosed before, I don’t think I even knew what depression could really be like.  My experience was taking a medication and it working the first time.. and I felt better.  I guess you could say I felt like it was an easy thing to get over.  When that didn’t happen this time, I didn’t know what to think.  It threw me for a loop.

If I could describe my experience with depression this time in 1 word, I think I would say “exhausting”.  Life feels so hard.  Simple tasks take 10 times longer to complete.  Spending time with my children and my husband is almost more than I can muster.  My job is suffering tremendously.  I cannot think things through easily or concentrate.  My mind feels fuzzy most days.  I’ve been so forgetful that I’m afraid I might take my kids with me somewhere and then leave them there.  No, I’m not kidding.  My physical appearance is suffering.  Fixing my hair and putting on makeup are things that aren’t in my routine right now.  I got my hair cut thinking that might help, nope. It feels like a chore just brushing my teeth.  

I could go on and I’m sure people would roll their eyes, but there finally comes a point where you’re just too exhausted to fight through it some days.  There comes a point where you feel like it would be easier to get in your car and drive off somewhere and just go to sleep.. and maybe not wake up.   There comes a point where you feel trapped inside a body that is just too heavy for you to carry anymore.  Do you know how scary it is to say things like that? Do you know how quickly things can escalate to that point? Night after night I went to bed praying and begging God to please keep me safe and to please help me feel better.  My word “exhausting” turned into “desperation”.  I had a hard time getting in to see my doctor, but when I finally got in I just unloaded on her and she upped her game with me a little bit.  For the first time in many many many nights, I feel “OK”.  I FEEL OK! 

I know my poor Momma has been worried about me.  

I was trying to think of a Bible verse I could cling to right now.  There are so many quotes and helpful tips about overcoming depression, but I don’t want anything that gives me a task to complete.  It’s a big enough task just making it through the day some days.  I think this one fits perfectly … Be Still

BE STILL : Free Download

Right now I’m just going to be still.  I’m going to take it one day at a time.  So far on the new medication, each day has been better than the one before it.  I know there will be bumps here and there.. my anxiety is a little through the roof these days, but I will take that over the alternative right now.  This new medication seems to be working.  I’m trying really hard not to get my hopes up, but I just so desperately want to feel better! So many wonderful people have been patient with me.  I cannot thank you guys enough.  I have the best coworkers.. I’ve been worthless and I know they have had to pick up some of my slack and try to keep me on task.  My poor kids have had to watch me lay on the couch a lot and have had me tell them “No, I don’t feel like playing right now” way too many times.  My husband has had an absent wife and has had to pick up lots of slack at home for me.  There is so much more, but that’s what has been giving me the most anxiety.  I can’t help but cry when I think about all the people who have had to deal with me while I deal with this.  They’ve been so patient.  I am so thankful.

Thank you for letting me talk about it a little bit.  I debated a lot whether I should say anything about it or WHAT to say about it.  Talking with others, their honestly has been so helpful.  Having them talk to me about the scary and TRUE things they’ve dealt with is helpful.  It makes me feel like I’m not alone and that it’s not just me struggling to get things under control.  Maybe with me being honest, I can help someone else feel that way too.

Checking In : The Friendship Ministry

The Friendship Ministry

I have to say, I’m feeling really blessed and really happy with how The Friendship Ministry is going so far.  I’ve been able to pray over 2 different people over the last month and it’s been so wonderful.  It feels so good to pray over someone and encourage them without them knowing you’re “meaning to” do it.  I just love the smile on their faces and the happiness in their words when they’re being encouraged and when they hear I’ve been praying for them.  It’s not because I want to be praised, it’s because I feel like I’ve done something to make them feel loved and appreciated.  In addition to that, I hope that I’m able to share with them how much God loves and appreciates them, too.  That’s the main goal.

I’m excited to see who God helps me choose next .. He’s been a little quiet lately.  Usually He shows me who to pray for next pretty easily.  Either He thinks I need to take a little time to work on myself, or He’s got someone who REALLY needs the extra encouragement on the horizon.  

This Spring / Summer I’m trying to bring back “Fellowship Friday” posts.  I just feel the need to fellowship with sisters (and brothers) in Christ, so I hope you will join along!  You can see the first post of the season up HERE.

Happy Weekend! 

Fellowship Friday : Come & See

Fellowship Friday Today for Fellowship Friday I wanted to share a blog that I feel like needs some attention.  I know she’s not seeking attention, so I hope she doesn’t mind me sharing.  This blog is an extension of a sweet lady named Rachel from Come and See Photography, who is a photographer based out of Starkville, Mississippi.  Rachel is a wonderful woman of God, a published author, a hard worker for rural communities in the South, a devoted mother, wife, and grandmother, and she’s my very sweet friend.  

Rachel is one of those people who can bless anybody.  She is someone who sets an amazing example of what a Godly woman should be.  I feel so lucky that I get to watch her first hand and learn from her daily.  Her blog is simply wonderful.  She shares such great passages from her daily Bible readings and she incorporates photos she’s taken and they always match perfectly to the scripture she’s referring to.  She definitely has a talent given to her by God! I feel so blessed that I have her in my life .. I am truly the lucky one.  

This Picture is from Come and See Photography

This Picture is from Come and See Photography

Please take a few moments to visit her blog : Come and See Photography – Blog .  You can also follow her on Facebook.  Click the picture above to be directed to her most recent blog post!

Fellowship Friday is a time when myself and others can share things we feel are inspiring or encouraging or just wonderful.  Feel free to share your own inspiring and encouraging thoughts in the comments below! Or, share your Fellowship Friday post in the comments.  I’d love to have some fellowship with you!

 

Forgetting To Be Thankful

All too many times I forget where I am.  I forget where I am in my relationship with God.  I forget that He is the creator, the One who directs my path, and I catch myself trying to direct my own path.  When things aren’t going my way, I get upset.  I sulk and pout and feel sorry for myself.  I end up trying to find ways to force it to work, and get more and more disappointed when those plans don’t work out either.  Throughout all of that, I’m completely shut off in my mind from God’s plan and will for my life.  It’s like I go through a moment of amnesia and forget that there is a bigger plan at work.  THANKFULLY, I come out of my trance and I snap back in to reality.  And in those moments, I feel #1 so dumb and #2 so thankful.  So thankful that God didn’t allow my plans to overtake His.  So thankful that He places contentment in my heart when things don’t go the way I want them to.  So thankful that He lets me see a little bit of His vision for my life.. and that I’m aware of what’s going on enough to be OK with that.  

Those negative feelings I have really cloud my mind.  They can bring anger that’s misdirected at God. I can’t imagine how many times I’ve been a little upset with God for the way things are going in my life.  Sometimes I feel trapped in my circumstances and like I can’t see the end or relief in sight.  I wonder how I’m going to survive to the end and not lose myself.  But, as usual, He reminds me of all the things I have to be thankful for in this very moment, and all of those negative thoughts just seem to fade away.  

There will be a time for us to have those things we’ve dreamed of.  Sometimes we have to realize that NOW is not that time, and we need to be patient.  Allowing God to give us those things in His time makes them so much more enjoyable.  In the meantime, while you’re waiting, don’t forget to be thankful.  Through our thankfulness God blesses us, and it’s a wonderful way to be blessed!thankfulness

Good For My Soul

I think this wonderful spring like weather is just so good for my soul! The last week of cold weather we had I feel like I struggled the entire week through.  My friend said, “I wish you had talked to me because I was feeling the same way!” I am just DONE with cold weather.. and rainy weather.  I heard it’s actually supposed to start raining here again, BUT.. maybe with this refreshed mind I have right now I will be OK with that.  haha.

Earlier this week after I picked the kids up from school and we all got home, they immediately headed for the front yard to play.  I didn’t even stop them.  I went to the summer stash and pulled out the sidewalk chalk, told the kids to play outside while I cooked, and left them to it.  I had probably 25 door bell rings to bring me flowers, but that’s alright.  Listening to them play and giggle and seeing them run around the yard was so refreshing and good for my Momma heart.  I ended up burning our dinner to where it was inedible, and that really upset me because it was supposed to last us about 3 meals..ugh.. BUT, our sweet neighbors took Tristan & Kate with their kids to get milkshakes! It was the sweetest treat for those two.  They had such a great time and I was able to just sit and “be” for a little bit.  I appreciated that so much! 

Yesterday they got to play outside some more with chalk and our neighbors.  It’s so good for their souls, too.  Patches even loves it! He is SO FRISKY and happy with the windows open.  Our evenings are filled with baths and comfy PJ’s for two tired little kiddos, and to me that’s the sign of a good day.

The week is gearing down and I’m really looking forward to the weekend! I hope the weather is nice and we can enjoy spending time together.  Have a wonderful day! 

Enjoy this free printable :  Click Here : Psalm 103:5Psalm 103:5