Introverts

Listen to Susan Cain’s powerful talk on the power of introversion (not to be confused with being shy).

If you are one of us, welcome to the club!  Be proud; you make a difference.  Extroverts, I just ask that you don’t feel left behind.  You are loved, and yes…we need you as much as you need us.  Enjoy her wonderful presentation.

Advertisements

Life: Not so bad

I often describe my bouts of depression as the waves of the sea; and I sense that many out there in the mental health field may agree with me.  One day, you are up.  The next day, you are completely down.  It doesn’t matter how much people that love you try to encourage you:  if you are down.  That is it.  You are down and nobody can get you out of that dreaded funk.  Nevertheless, I want to speak about something that happens to depressed people that seems to take the cake.  The ups.

When a depressed individual faces the up, and I speak from a very personal standpoint–I am by no means in the medical field–the up is rather amazing.  Suddenly, all of the pain is lifted and you rise above the waves and see the sunshine.  The feeling is better than when I used to not have depression.  For the record, I have never been diagnosed with depression.  Yet, you can probably tell that I don’t need to walk into a doctor’s office and get this thing certified.  Suicidal thoughts have plagued me from a very young age.  I just never took action because of a couple of strange things that keep me walking on earth:

  • I still believe in miracles
  • I still believe the world is a beautiful place (even with all of the trash that exists in it)
  • I still believe that God can turn my situations around
  • I like to live with hope that things will change
  • I believe that when I have a breakthrough (the up) I experience it from a very positive place.
  • I love to look back and say “man, I cannot believe how depressed I was then.  Look at me now!”
  • I believe that my pain is due to a season of transformation and change; therefore, I must experience the pain to experience the ‘up.’

I think I know what you are thinking.  Yes, I am a “professional worrier” that lacks faith in the areas where I usually need it the most (remember, sarcastic Christian here!).  Anyway, I feel that I can say these things freely because I know who I am.  Or better yet, I have come to know myself a bit better than yesterday.  I also am not afraid to let out whatever is bothering me. I am comfortable being this person–although many, MANY, MANY times I cannot stand myself!

Also, I am not a hypocrite.  I am not the type of person that will tell you that God will take care of all of your troubles; therefore, you must show trust and be happy because He has this!  Absolutely NO.  I am the type to tell you that, while I believe that God is behind the scenes in all of my troubles, I believe that the transformation comes with a TRUCKLOAD of pain.  I believe that without pain, you cannot learn what exactly is being perfected in you.  Here’s the kicker:  I would not be able to commit suicide because I still believe that, even when I say ‘what’s the point,’ I know that God has a point.  I believe that my very statements of pointlessness are the reason that God finds me relevant.

I think He would say the same about you.  So, perhaps this post does not reflect all of the beauty that a Christian post should present.  Perhaps this isn’t your common religious essay where by the end of it, you feel empowered.  The point is to give you something that is real in me.  I am leaving all pretensions and showing you the real me.  I truly hope that you live a life that looks into the future with the intensity of a ‘yes’ and the possibility of an ‘up.’  I would say that I still believe you should give life a big YES.

The waves

Depression is like a room engulfed in flames and you can’t breathe for the sooty smoke smothering you limp – and suicide is deciding there is no way but to jump straight out of the burning building … You don’t try to kill yourself because death is appealing – but because life is agonizing. We don’t want to die. But we can’t stand to be devoured.” Ann Voskamp

The pain; like the waves of the sea

I have been very resilient for most of my life.  There have been a lot of times when I simply didn’t feel powerful at all; yet there was something that always allowed me to bounce back.  Today is not one of those days.  There is one person in my life that can cut through the walls of emotional protection that I have built; that is my husband.  His opinion means a lot to me; and sometimes, a bit too much.

As you may know from reading this blog, I have been unemployed for some time.  There was a time in my life when I truly felt that I was thriving so fast and furiously that I thought I’d surely make it to the top.  The things started to change.  I met people that simply had no moral value to their character.  I had to make choices to either be part of it, be the ‘better person’ by continuously making better personal choice–yet being impacted directly/indirectly by their bad behaviors, or walk away from it all.  I chose the last option. I quit.  With quitting came a bunch of financial and emotional mess.  I can say that today I am emotionally in a better place.  Financially, I would say that we simply manage as much as we can.  My student loans are on deferment, when in the past I used to pay as I went to school.  It has been close to 3 months since I’ve been unemployed.

I have found it truly hard to find another job.  Yes, I have been offered opportunities.  The problem is that coming from a negative background in the type of work that I do, it has been hard for me to move into any of these opportunities.  The first reason is that many of these smaller companies have no clear goals or vision to what they do.  In the world of contracting, you can see from a mile away when I company may not be able to make it.  I am not intending to build a resume full of ‘mini opportunities.’  The larger companies that I have targeted have called me…I didn’t make their cut.  I have replayed in my head what I have done wrong.  Nevertheless, I try to go back to my faith and keep telling myself “God didn’t want you there.”  The problem is that I don’t know how long that’s going to help me.  Its almost like giving myself a pat on the back…but how long is this going to work?

Today, my husband came home in a horrible mood.  Speaking badly about people in our home, down playing when people do nice things for him…just horrible.  I could not stand it so I stood my ground and stated that I would not put up with this foul treatment.  He laughed at me.  I know that I sound bitchy right now, but in my emotional situation and with all of this going on in my life, I felt betrayal.  I felt that he cannot be happy with anything.  Later on, he attempted to touch me but I just couldn’t bare it.  I told him that if he wanted to laugh at me, and it pleased and made him feel good, to go ahead.  I said that I am already a joke, he is just another one getting with the program.

So, for years I have felt that my husband saw me as another paycheck.  I have never felt that he valued me as a wife, mother, a woman.  I have always felt that he only saw my value as long as I brought money home.  Today, I have nothing for him.  I have nothing but requests and debt.  It is very demoralizing to feel this way.  I feel that I should die, but I am too chicken to go through with it.  Plus, I know that people that commit suicide are selfish and end up burning in hell.  I am not being sarcastic, just saying how I feel.  No, I’m not going to go kill myself.  That’s ridiculous, and it would negatively affect my children.

I have prayed that God will provide the way so that others won’t suffer, and I will stop occupying space on earth that I don’t deserve.

I am drowning.