Friday, December 29, 2006

On depression

We had dinner with some new friends tonight and I shared some thoughts I have about depression... I think that part of the reason so many people are depressed is because they are sad and have no one to talk to. Grief can't be carried alone. We must have someone we can talk to who cares. Someone who will just listen, with a caring heart. Yeah, Jesus is there, but it's nice to have a flesh and blood person too, sometimes. If we are married, our spouse should be there... Though he or she may not be perfect, we must feel safe and like they care, that is the essence of real intimacy, I believe. This kind of intimacy can be had in friendships too, though we must be honest and take some risks.
I'll share my own story here...
I was really sad for part of this Christmas (as I have been other Christmases). But I felt stuck and like I didn't know how to get unstuck. I cried out to God to help me get out of my depression; to show me what the matter was. He broke through. Late one evening, something possessed me to open a box I had... where in a secret compartment I kept some keepsakes. I saw the little program for my mother's funeral, held on a February over 15 years ago. My mom was dying of cancer during that Christmas. Grief is a funny thing. It must come out. I didn't know I missed my mom until I saw the little program, with her name on it, her birth date and death date. Gone at 42, two days after her birthday. A little over a month after Christmas. I missed her. I miss her. I hadn't been allowing myself to miss her. I haven't had a mother since, but Jesus became my mother. That may sound funny, but it's true. He took me up when I was 19. From 14 to 19 I lost myself...but he recovered me, the real me, and has been recovering me since.
When I lose myself and get numb or very angry, he hasn't given up on me, but is working on finding me again, unshackling me.
That night, shortly after I had opened the box, and was deep in thought, Mike (my husband) came home). I told him I was sad, but the tears didn't come out until he came and put his arm around me... Sometimes we need a flesh and blood Jesus, if just for a few moments to remind us we are loved. We are all flesh and blood in desperate need of love, friendship, support.
God heard my cry-- that I was willing to deal with whatever was bothering me in those deep recesses of my mind. After all, He does know me much better than I know myself.


Kent said...

He is am awesome Father, and Mother. I heard someone say this the other day. Back in college this guy had a very serious crises of faith. He told his closest friend that he just could believe the gospel anymore. His friend said to him, "That's okay Brian I will have enough faith for both of us until you find it for yourself again." Brian said that this friend didn't judge him or belittle him. His friend didn't even try to fix him. He was willing to love him and carry him.

I love that. It is an honor to carry someone when they can't manage to take another step on their own.

Your experience Manuela is an awesome picture of what it looks like when God carries us but also when a flesh and blood friend steps up to do it also.

Trish said...

Beautiful. I so understand where you are my sweet new friend. I wish I had read this before last night. Perhaps we can spend more time sharing with each other. I spent a lot of years in depression. For similar reasons. This is something you must go through! But the freedom on the other side is sweet rain to your mind and soul. Opening the box was opening a gift. A gift to open your soul and set you free. God is so tender and loving that way. I see his loving arms around you!

I totally agree with you that we need Jesus with skin! That's what we do for people. Love. It's really very simple, yet so profound.

I am here. I would love to talk more if you'd like...