Is the fog finally lifting? Can I be so lucky?
I have been walking in a daze of sorts, it would seem, not really here, not really there, just...being. Wandering from room to room, looking out the window, watching others go about their business but not willing or desiring to participate and not really wanting to do anything at all.
Some would call it a depression.
Doesn't everyone know that the best way to deal with depression is to serve? Help someone else with their problems, take a needy friend some food, help in a homeless shelter...somehow take the focus off yourself - right? Well, I have said this for years, with some arrogance, I'm sure. Except when I find myself mired in the fog of a depressive state, those wise sayings and such good advice seems so, well, empty.
I wanted out of the mire, so I did serve. Did it make me feel less down? Only until I was by myself again, then it would descend again, like a bad penny. OK, I'm mixing metaphors, but you know what I mean.
For myself, I have found the only antidote to being depressed, being in a pit or drowned in a funk, is to let it play out. Especially the kind of down-ness I was experiencing. I knew exactly why I was depressed - definitely event related. Coming off a month-long road trip and a friend passing away is probably enough to send anyone into a crashing let-down, let's face it. Add to it interpersonal upheaval and betrayal and you got a perfect mix for a good, ole-fashioned depression.
But, I think...I'm almost afraid to say it, but...I think the fog may be lifting. I was able to craft today, which is something I was definitely unable to do since we returned weeks ago. I am still taking the St. John's Wort, which is supposed to help lift your mood, but I'm wondering how much longer I will need that. I sure would like to think that my normal, upbeat self is returning. I can't even imagine what Traumatic Stress Disorder must feel like, or those poor souls that endure years of clinical depression must wake with every morning. I most certainly have a huge amount of compassion for those that struggle with these issues - it must be like walking through life in a fog...a fog that refuses to lift.
A dear friend, who has struggled with 'the fog', suggested that we send each other "grateful" emails every day; kind of like a grateful journal made popular by Oprah. Great idea! We have been at it for a few days now, and I am thoroughly enjoying it. I am eternally grateful for those He has placed in my life to give me care, love and support during the difficult times of my life. I am finding it interesting what we are grateful for each day and am so glad we are doing it. (I will be collecting my daily gratitude for posting at a later date. Perhaps it can give a lift to my readers -and to me, too.)
The last time I experienced this type of depression was after returning from Israel my second time. I so love the Land, and I was unsure (as I still am) of when I will be able to return. I definitely left a piece of my heart there and I'd sure like to go visit it! Haha! That scar has healed in the years since I returned (gosh, has it been 5 years?), but the longing remains and the scar can hurt when pushed hard enough. That depression lasted a good month...at least that's what I remember (my close friends could probably remember better). What a dark place depression can be.
I know our emotions serve purposes, but for the life of me I cannot understand the purpose of depression. Melancholy is a friend I live with frequently, but is so much more friendly than depression. Melancholy doesn't sap your creativity, motivation and desire for life like depression does. And, melancholy enjoys music and sad stories; who doesn't enjoy wallowing in a good melancholy once in a while? But that depression...mean and cruel it is. No thank you.
So tonite, I am thankful at the prospect of the fog of depression lifting from my demeanor, my life. Depression paints everything gray. I'm so very grateful that color is starting to come into view once again.