I’ve had a break in August from my Accelerated Nursing Program and had thought I was going to train hard and be very ready for that half marathon and well on my way to train for a triathlon next year. The triathlon is not out of the question still but when August rolled around I trained hard the first couple weeks, dealt with my heart thing (SVTs) and then got the all clear to workout again. I was elated. Except something else happened. Not being in school, not working (except every other weekend) allowed me to sink back into depression. I’ve struggled with depression for fifteen years of my life and have tried many different things but there is always an inevitable moment where I’m forced into a pit that I have to crawl out of. I thought this was over, that I had conquered the symptoms with nutrition and exercise and the realization that my life is actually pretty darn good. But towards the end of the semester this darkness just kept nagging and nagging and as soon as I was no longer distracted it took completely over. For those of you who do not understand depression:
It has nothing to do with the person’s view of their life being bad.
It does not always mean something bad happened to that person.
It does not mean they need more Jesus in their life.
It does not mean they feel sorry for themselves.
What it does mean is that mostly for unknown reasons they are crippled by this feeling of hopelessness and despair. That no matter what they do it won’t leave, they can’t escape. They try–through alcohol, drugs, and unfortunately suicide. When they are feeling this way everything seems so difficult. Imagine carrying around two ton body armor. That’s how it feels. Every movement is heavy. When I feel this way I force myself to take a shower no matter how I feel about it because if I don’t take at least a shower I’ve given in…and given up. That might be all I can manage for the day. I may spend the rest of the day half-asleep half-awake in silence…only to me it’s anything but silence. There is plenty going on inside. A battle in my mind…my rational self trying to convince my depressed self that I am worth something. That I am lovable, that I am not a burden on other people. When I’m here, working out is the last thing on my mind. I’m just trying to survive myself. There is no way to see someone struggling with depression and know the battles they are fighting, but believe me they are ugly and very bloody. The fight to survive is just as hard as someone with a terminal illness. They don’t need you judging them, telling them their life isn’t that bad. They know that already. That’s part of the battle. They don’t need you telling them to snap out of it. Trust me if a person could “snap” out of that hell and torment that would be the first thing they would do. They need you to support them. To love them. To be quiet. Maybe a hug. Definitely prayer.
I a currently seeing a therapist who is a literal God-send. She is giving me my life back one piece at a time. Giving me the hope and strength I need to fight my inner demons. It is a battle in itself facing those demons, but so far I’ve faced a couple and won. I think. I hope. With each memory, each moment of my past that I conquer I feel stronger. I am so hopeful that eventually I can redeem all of my past wounds and demons and lay them to rest. Only to look forward at a bright future that I know I do have. But I cannot give my all to my husband or my God without letting go of heaviness I drag around from my past. It’s wearing me down. But the load does feel lighter. I do feel more optimistic. I know I can do this and I’m thankful for my guardian, my guide and my God for finally taking me through this journey.
So that being said. I am living day by day. I might workout. I might not. My biggest goal is to conquer my thoughts. If I get a run in there, then awesome. If I do Body Beast that’s even better…we will see. But bare with me as I heal. I’ll be back with both arms swinging. In the meantime–know you are loved. Know you can do this. Know there is always hope. Always.