Lately, I’ve been saying to myself that Christ saved my soul and the Buddha helped return my sanity. I want to write about my experiences that have lead to this realization because I consume blogs/vlogs copiously. I want to join in on the content creation and share my own little takes on working with my mental health. I also want to preface it, If I don’t, it’ll come out of nowhere. Number one, who am I to even talk about depression? And number two, frick who I am to the world, who am I to my community to talk about it?
Who am I to talk about depression?
I’ve been battling depression and suicidal thoughts since middle school and I started getting professional help by age 22. I’ve committed to stay off meds since age 24 and this past May, I was ready to get back on. 12 years of struggling with depressions ups and downs had been enough. I sought out professional help and started on a rigorous journey where I am grateful to say that my life has changed tremendously. With the support of my counselor, I’m not on meds and I’m more at peace than I’d been since high school damn it. I mean consistent peace and self acceptance that is driving deeper than anything I’d done in the past. I’m at awe and I’m grateful and I want to share what got me to this point. I haven’t been here long and I won’t pretend to be. I’ll be candid and open along the way as I share
Who am I to my community?
I’ve told most people that I struggle with depression. I’ve not told most people how bad it gets. I don’t tell people the crippling thoughts, suicidal impulses, the severe anxiety. My therapist and a few close girlfriends get that. What people will see is that I’ll leave parties early, act funny some times and not follow through on things. I seek to be more open loving and honest to my community through these shares. They would be for naught if I didn’t. Happiness is not about me, I mean it is but then it is shared, because the healthier I am the better I can show up for those near me.
Compassion saved my life
I’ll start my sharing here. Early on in my twenties I took something a therapist said and twisted it into what must have been a deep misconception (Let me give this professional the benefit of the doubt.) I was told that I am depressed because I think negative thoughts. I took that and ran with it, and I’ve shamed myself for my thoughts for over a decade. The very definition of neurotic. I’m being negative about my dang negative thoughts.
By the time this July came I had been meditating for over a year and something clicked. Compassion. My negative thoughts needed validation. They needed acknowledgement. I began to ask, “What am I feeling in the moment that brought on that thought?” Am I feeling jealous? Do I wish I had something I don’t? Am I doing all I can to achieve my own personal goals? Ok, well let me try and get on my grind and not project on that person. And like the most glorious warm shower, I was washed clean. I call it my compassion baptism. I am allowed to think. I no longer chase my negative thought with chastisement and shame “You shouldn’t think that!” I acknowledge my feelings and put them in perspective. It’s saving me and will be the heart of what I share on mental health.
Much love folks . . .