My very first entry in this new space. Blank pages always haunt me. I am so desperate to get something out but I never end up with what I had in mind to begin with. There is a stereotype of “bloggers” which sometimes keeps me from writing and that is “people who blog are very self-absorbed.” I have to admit I am a self-absorbed person much of the time even when I don’t blog. Lately I have been poked and prodded mostly by my own soul to write more. It’s one of a few things that I liked consistently (besides reading) for as long as I can remember. While reflecting on my own and with my counselor, I realized writing is one of the main things I get passionate about.
I have been struggling to uncover my “life’s work.” The blank page I stare at before writing is kind of like my life right now. There are so many things that could appear on the page in a matter of minutes, but I am terrified as to what the result will be. Yet at the same time I am exhilarated. I am not sure if anyone can quite understand what I mean unless they are me or God…or maybe have been through what I have.
There is a significant piece of my life that is slowly drifting away. Because that something was there, I was held in bondage. My future-if, in my mind, I even had one, was fixed, held, grilled into my brain. I saw the “prize” and went for it, all the while stumbling, drowning, like a crazy drunkard. I wanted to reach some end goal that I believed was my dream. If I reached my dream, I would achieve what my soul desperately craved: joy, peace and freedom. But whenever I reached the so called dream (attending college, graduating from college, getting a boyfriend, getting my first job, etc. etc. etc.) I was left with nothing beautiful. I was left with only that something-my closest and yet most wretched of friends. That something is depression, an ugliness I have battled for over ten years.
For the first time in a decade, I truly feel I am free. The freest I have ever been. THANK YOU, GOD!
Right now I am thinking of all the possible things listeners are thinking when they hear about “depression” or “people who struggle with depression.” They may think, as I often do, “depression” is a walking cliche. Why couldn’t I have been struck with something less common or less heard about? Can we move on to something new?
Other responses from people that perhaps have depression is #1) that I am in denial. When you are in the muckiest of muck, you really do not feel you will ever get to the place that I am. And, that may lead to an even more likely response #2) that I did not suffer like you have suffered. I have to agree that I go from questioning whether I really truly suffered (or if it was “all in my head”) to thinking that I am just telling myself I am fine. More about my healing later…as this is a huge topic, one I will not be able to contain in this blog.
Due to depression being in the background rather than the foreground of my life defining every thing that I did, I am a totally different person. Similar to the prisoners who were released from death row in the film Shawshank Redemption, I am entering a new world, and it is scary. The “dreams” I always had as a child, teen, and young adult, I have come to realize were not dreams after all, just things to build me up so I could try to achieve love, attention, and acceptance from people (from whom I usually already had love, attn and acceptance).
So I am trying to rediscover my dreams. I do not know if my current job as an elementary Spanish teacher is a job I am called to do. I have doubts about the graduate program I am in (special education). I have always dreamed of marrying and having children at a young age, but now I know that was faulty thinking. I do believe I will marry and maybe have one child, but I do not have a timeline. I try to enjoy each moment as it comes because I will never get this one moment back. I will never again be single and in my 20s! It has been amazing to see what God has done as I have been less frantic about finding a man and simply enjoying His presence through the wonderful people I have been meeting lately.
The one dream I had as a child and continue today (I believe it is a “real” dream) is to be a writer. I do not know what that consists of. I would like to publish something but I know I have a long way to go. The biggest thing is God has given me many gifts and He is directing me to share them despite my terror. I went through what I did and there’s no way to take it back. I have been looking for ways to let people know they are not alone. Because of where I am in life, I believe I have more of an opportunity to do that than I have ever and maybe ever will! To God be the Glory because without Him, I would literally be dead…He has done miraculous things in my life and I often feel so unworthy. If you are interested in my journey through depression, I hope to post more on that soon!