“Depression, I hate you; you make me look bad, you make me feel bad; you have people asking me if I’m okay and I hate that others worry. You make me raw; vulnerable.”

Restless; the over-exercising and over-extending of myself. Not remembering the last time I comfortably sat and read a book or watched TV without feeling guilty for not being efficient with my time. Months of sleeping too much followed by a month of not sleeping well; grocery shopping and eating became minimal.  I gave in to staying in bed; sleeping over 10 hours a night. Crying every day and a new inability to concentrate at work left me emotionally and spiritually tried. Finally, in my mind, things clicked enough for me to realize that this is not who I am and In February, I was diagnosed with depression.4 months later, I am learning to breath deep again. The deep sad and anxious waters of my spirit are slowly drying up. I remember quite clearly about 4 weeks after being on medication that embers of hope were slowly coming into focus. About 6 weeks later, I had a whole week of hope. Now Joy and Hope find me daily.

Wounds are healing, and are yet scars that mark the evil one’s trenches in my flesh; a plot against my soul made apparent in the silent voice of depression and grief. A consuming oppression that plunged me into an experience of confusion, sorrow, and doubt. Yet the Lord mercifully took me to a place of vulnerability in community–a transformative journey that continues to bring clarity to the character of The Light in the midst of dark places. Weary of carrying around a suitcase of shame, I seek to shed light on this ravaging ‘Mr. D’ (this depression).
 “Depression is like a jealous mistress that fights for my attention daily.”–I could not agree more. To take every thought captive and gaze heavenward throughout each day is oftentimes like fitting a square peg in a round hole. I have had to learn (and am still learning) to fight against this mellow indentation on my heart–Satan delighting in evil with a ruthless attempt to devalue Christ as King in my life. Depression oftentimes unravels my thoughts and distorts my reality.
Mercifully, the Lord whispers in moments of sadness. These recent mornings, when I awake, the first thoughts in my mind have been Jesus’s own words “Talitha Cumi” (Mark 5:35)–a calling to ‘Rise Little Girl‘ … as mornings come and go, I have been reminded to Rise daughter- do not sit in death- but rise and live.” 
The strength and desire to rise each morning and live with HOPE is now a reality. I say this to encourage anyone out there who may be struggling with depression. Get help- find a counselor; see your doctor; find a medication right for you. Depression is not something to ignore or feel shame over. Life can get better. It wasn’t until I reached out, that I understood benefits found within the beautiful gift of community.