Every now and then, I sit down to reflect on my life, and I like to think of the bad things. I'm no stranger to feelings of sadness or dealing with unfairness. Today, I was thinking about depression, and the role it has played in my life. I realized some of my best moments. I mean my very best moments have come as a direct result of my drowning in depression. I've since recovered, but these are the events and lessons I am most grateful for.
No.1 Better Questions | Better Conversations
There is no doubt in my mind the best conversations I've had were held as I was holding back tears. In day to day life, conversations are actually discussions. We all want to prove a point, or get to the point as quickly as possible. Despair brought out the best of us, instead of being afraid many of my companions have risen to the occasion. I didn't make a friend I gained a soul mate.
No.2 A Deeper Relationship with God
So much has been left unsaid and will never be spoken of again. I have accepted this to be appropriate and wise. My rationale does not change the emotions tied to the events leading to the depression. God has always been there for me. He understands my deepest pains and regrets. I've been strengthened in times of despair. When better conversations got too deep God never abandoned me.
I've been abandoned by friends and soulmates alike. In the end it makes no difference to me. Depression has made me my own best friend. The word of God has made me unshakable. The quiet hours spent drifting through the recesses of my mind have been anything but playful. In those hours, days, months, and years I've become more sure - of myself.
It started with backing out, dropping out, or just disappearing. Then it evolved into a "NO" without explanation. Depression has made me so sure of myself, I'm sure I won't allow anyone to bring nonsense into my life. This change has been so drastic, at times I thought to myself, "Okay, give it up! You couldn't, you wouldn't, omg, you shouldn't!". Guess what? I always do. Depression has taught me to identify with the feelings I never want to feel again, and to reject them at the door.
Depression is deeper than sadness. It's a cancer stemming from unresolved issues. I no longer attempt to evade issues to get by. I take responsibility for what is happening in the moment, no matter how scary it looks to the outside world. At some point depression has made me numb to caring, at other times it's made me wise enough not to care. I've learned my actions, whether defensive or offensive are all that matter.
It's been a while since I've had a bout of depression, and I doubt I will ever have another one like the ones before. My vulnerability in depression has taught me the limitations of others and the greatness of God. It has illuminated the places where I've been weak because I refused to ask for help and accept a true savior. Depression has made me stronger because it forced me to declare "I will not be conquered by my own mind". It's inspired me to ask better questions of myself and go deeper with introspection. I'm grateful to have been depressed and to know I it is within my power to never return to that place again.
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