This blog finally became a reality when I decided (after years of procrastination) to paint my dining room hutch. I love it and wish I’d painted it years ago! The thought of possibly ruining it kept me paralyzed.
But one morning I knew the time had come. I was up early and painting by 10:00. For some reason, that morning’s resolve was an epiphany. After years of studying my nemesis, depression, and coming to terms with where I wanted my life to go, it just all finally came together like a really good recipe.
It seemed as though during the night God had silently imprinted on my mind, “You can be happy. It’s o.k. “
It seems there has always been a “worm in my apple”. There’s always something that wants to take away the sweetness of life. It’s like I didn’t think I deserve to be healthy, to be happy and so I found ways to make sure that that happened.
Over twenty years ago, with my doctor’s permission, I decided to fly solo in my depression-no more antidepressants. No safety net. The time had come to face my demons.
I don’t sugarcoat my struggles. Managing depression (or better yet defeating it) is very hard work. It means getting real with yourself and the part you play in your own depression. And we all leave our own footsteps along the path of our depression, by the way, we think, the things we do and how we overall function in life.
Medication can only do so much as most researchers now agree. All mental health professionals encourage their patients to incorporate lifestyle changes as well.
I’m not an authority but I’m not a novice, either. I have a degree in psychology and worked as a hospital chaplain after completing two-quarters of Clinical Pastoral Education. I have counseled many women and facilitated many self-help groups.
I am not a pastor. I am, however, a Christian, and while I feel God was the power behind my ability to conquer my depression, many techniques I will share with you are applicable whether you believe the same way I do or not. I won’t try to convince anybody to believe as I do. That’s up to God.
Life isn’t compartmentalized or narrowly defined. We are total beings. One part of our life affects other parts of our lives.
Painting the hutch, exercising, eating, reading, praying, etc, are all part of who I am. Painting my hutch was the result of realizing that tomorrow was going to come anyway (God willing) whether I painted that hutch or not. That doesn’t sound very profound until you really think about it.
I decided I want my tomorrows to be full of dreams realized and new dreams emerging. I want my tomorrows to be depression-free which means I need to take care of today. I don’t want to always be afraid of making a mistake.
So much of what we do today affects what will happen to us tomorrow. The choices we make today affect the choices we can make in the future. Some choices will never come around if we’ve made certain choices today.
Tomorrow is coming for you as well. What do you want it to be?
God bless and have a good day.
PS. It turned out great! Here it is at Christmas a couple of years ago.
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