A Candid Glimpse

People who have suffered from depression just want you to listen. To really hear us. Not listen to the whiney, blaming, finger-pointing exasperations that exhaust both you and us, no..listen to the deep rumblings of our heart so that you can get a small glimpse of how we feel and who we are in the place where we are. It’s interesting for people to note that we are not always the same person in the same place.

Depending on how bad it is, we are someone different, and THAT is the person we need you to listen to!

It’s also funny how people write off mental illness as some embarrassing dis-ease that puts them ill-at-ease. What is depression? Well, from a person intimately aware of what it is I can tell you this…unless you have experienced depression, STOP TRYING TO DESCRIBE WHAT IT IS!

Theory is almost accurate. But, what is missing from text books is the truth of depression and other mental illnesses; the truth of the depth of the illness that allows us to be in reality, aware of reality an at the same time UNABLE TO PULL OURSELVES out of the deep cave that we have found ourselves in. When I was in a deep depression after my Mom died, I was not there because I simply ended up there, nor did I choose to go there; I was coerced there by a pain that I could not label nor handle and so I followed the pain into the cave; because there it was familiar, it was somewhat comfortable, it was HOME…..and home is what seems safe, but not all homes are safe– are they?

I was in a cave because I was alone yet surrounded by people. I was in a cave because I told people I was hurting and not one person picked up the phone and called me. Not one person asked, “Do you need me to listen?”  Funny, If I said I’d missed my diabetes medication, they would immediately remind me to check my glucose levels and act accordingly but when my mind was off, people shied away…they’d leave me alone, and THAT was the last thing I wanted or needed. How easy it is to ignore the warning signals coming from sufferers.

Is it possible there is someone in your family suffering in plain sight and  you are completely missing the queus?

Why is it so hard for a sensitivity to mental health issues to become a part of our daily well health checks? Why do we not check on people mentally? Why do we shy away when we see or ‘feel’ something is off? We have patience for EVERY OTHER illness yet we treat mental illness like it is a choice for those who suffer!!

I have lost count of the SILENT CRIES that I personally yelled out in the middle of a room full of people who heard nothing! Why silent cries? Because that is just how mental illness operates, it is covered based on how it has been received in past circumstances—stigmatized. I put the signals out there but people never saw me or heard me. Maybe YOU did not stigmatize anyone knowingly, but you did, imperceptibly when you ignored someone you felt needed help and didn’t go a step further and pick up the phone and ask, ” Are you okay?” “Do you need to talk?”. It matter’s, believe me.

I know, it is easier to understand an issue you are familiar with. It is easier to deal with an issue you have received training in. But to you church going, Bible carrying, Spirit filled believers…WE NEED YOUR HELP to get through our illness! Just like you ‘go in’ for the cancer patient, when is the last time you went before God for a depressed person…not a cutesy prayer of obligation, but a real transformative, life-changing, heaven stirring, God calling, changing, prayer of healing for the illness called depression. Depression is an illness that HAPPENS to affect the brain, so stop looking at it like it is a weakness, please!

This is a call for you…putting mental illness on your list of illnesses to pray for. People are dying every day because of a messed up and confused mind that is not sending the appropriate brain signals it needs in order for the brain to regulate thinking, action, and appropriate processing of thought. This is serious and can sneak up on anyone for a number of reasons.

Don’t look down on mental illness but LOOK for opportunities to beat it; seek for more knowledge on the diversity of treatment and healing so that together, we can beat the enemy that has come up against the mind.

 I Will Serve God with All My Heart, Might, Mind, and Strength

Until next time, keep being whole.