I'm depressed...but I am not weak

I am coming out of my self-imposed cave of shame and admitting, I am depressed. I have been battling it a bit more in the past couple of months and I am tired of it. I know what I need to do and will do to come out of this darkness but also believe, by telling my story I can help others.

I hate that so many with depression feel shamed or embarrassed to say it out loud and to ask for help. I also hate that when you do, many will rush over your words with an easy "snap out of it", "you have so much to be happy about", etc and never truly listen.

Y'all, depression is an illness that needs to be respected and treated.

But how do you know if you are depressed?

We are each different so my signs may not be yours but here they are: I am more tired, I lose interest in things that I love, I slack in motivation, I get moody, I am ready to give up.

The thing is, these are all very vague symptoms and can be signs of many other things. I could really just be tired. I could be over training. I could be coming down with a cold. I could be having a bad day. I could be slacking on my good nutrition. My vitamin D levels could be going down again. 

So how do I know it is depression? It sticks with me. And I see the triggers in my life.

Like signs, triggers can vary from one person to another but most are pretty much the same. For me, I am stressed at work, I have been juggling financial issues at home in attempts to get out of debt and balance increased expenses, there are relationship issues that are ongoing and wearing me out, I have been worried about loved ones fighting life-threatening diseases and/or alcohol. 

And this starts the vicious cycle. The depression and stress weaken me so my outbreaks intensify and become more frequent. This makes me tired, achy, annoyed, and I can lose my cool. We all do sometimes so please, be kind and understanding when your loved one loses their cool. There is a reason. Anger, etc. is a sign of something wrong. Not the problem to be fixed.

And words. Words can hurt. Being told I am a Christian and shouldn't get mad is irritating. It just escalates feelings of failure as yes, I know I am a Christian, yes, I know I should be loving, patient, and kind, and yes, I know I am flopping at times. But really?! Do you think pointing out my failures is going to make anything better? In all reality, I already know I am flopping. And y'all, Christians flop too. No one is perfect outside of Jesus. 

I know all this but this doesn't make things magically vanish.

So what am I going to do?

Take my life back and get back into control.

I will run every day.

I will cross train.

I will pray and keep the faith.

I will read the book and do the journal I purchased at the end of the year on Surviving Depression. This will be my personal development commitment right now. 

I will go talk to someone, a professional or an unbiased friend, and just get things off my chest.

I will attend the healing mass at church this coming Friday. When I announced it darling daughter quickly piped up, but mom, you aren't sick. Well, first, you don't need to be sick to attend a healing mass and second, I am sick. Depression is a sickness that needs help and care and I will turn to God.

I will drink my daily shake. It makes my tummy feel better, it energizes me, it fuels my body well, and all of those added together will only help me move forward.

I will NOT beat myself up anymore or hide in shame. 

Depression hurts but I am strong. 

Daily Gratitude: I am thankful for the strength of God in times when I feel weak.

Daily Bible Verse: The righteous cry out, and the LORD hears them; he delivers them from all their troubles. ~ Psalm 34:17

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