Everything, and He understands it perfectly. Hence why as mortals it is impossible for us to judge eternal matters as He does. Of course we are required to judge things. For instance, we have to judge what is appropriate for our family. It always amazes me what is right for my family is not right for another.
Already with my family I've noticed some differences from the home I grew up in. I believe my parents raised me the way they should have and did things the best they could. And did what was right for our family. With my own family I've been doing some things the same some things different. It's mind blowing seriously.
And so it is that I want to get into what type of things I want to talk about that I have been afraid to open up about. I feel like God wants me to share my story. Even though my story sharing may only help one person. Me.
I matter that much to Him. Through my struggles and trials He has always been there. But I am forgetful at times. Writing has become my memory bank.
I can remember a particular day my freshman year of college where I just couldn't understand my dad. I was frustrated. Why was he the way he was? I found (and later figured out I was guided) a letter that my dad wrote to his dad. I won't share what was in the letter because it was so personal and hard for my dad to write. Why would writing a letter to your dad be so hard?
Here is where things get emotional for me
I never met my grandfather, my dad didn't meet him either. My grandfather was a smart man. And helped many who struggled with math learn to love it. He also only had one arm. He climbed the Tetons despite physical limitations.
There was one BIG physical limitation he couldn't shake. He had a chemical imbalance. Which made him fall into depression. Which helped him make choices that ultimately left him feeling like his only way out was to take his own life.
I don't ever judge him. I pray that someday I get to meet him. Modern medicine is so much more advanced than it was when he was alive. Why do I tell you all this?
Well if you understand my family history you'll understand where I am coming from a bit better. My parents have always been open with us kids about feelings and especially feelings of sorrow and depression.
I have to admit I even found myself viewing depression as a weakness. A man made weakness. Then Elder Holland came out with a talk that blew my mind. What if we treated physical illnesses the way we treated mental illnesses? "Can't you just NOT have cancer?" "Just make the bleeding stop!" "Can't you just push through the throwing up?"
Sounds silly doesn't it?
I'm here to tell you that what I call the cancer of the mind is very real. And I have it.
It's weird to say because depressed is not a word I would use to describe myself. In fact I consider myself a happy person. So how in the world do I have depression? I could go on and on about chemical imbalances in your mind but in short. Things that healthy minds could shake off in an hour, or a day. For a sick mind take so much longer and sometimes are impossible without medication. Imagine having a sickness that the only way to get over it was to have an antibiotic. Would you take it?
That doesn't mean everyone with chemical imbalances need medicine all of the time or maybe not even ever if mild enough.
Or that healthy minds can't ever get sick for a period of time.
Now you might be thinking "well what kind of depressed are you talking about? Because everyone gets depressed."
Very true. Everyone does, we lose a loved one, get a lifetime illness, or even go through relationship separations. These are all very depressing. And can take a very very very long time to heal from.
The kind of depressed I'm talking about is something that despite all your efforts is there. Everyday could be a depressing day for me. I have learned about "triggers". Triggers being things that set off depression/anxiety. And I try my hardest to stay far away from them.
Some of mine are
Not having a routine
Not having money
Anything that doesn't go according to plan
Not knowing what is happening next
Being away from loved ones
I'm sure there are more things I could add but sounds like life right? I have to talk myself out of freaking out over the smallest things. For instance today I took my kids to the park (part of our new routine ) then my kids couldn't agree on which park to go to. Then once we came to an agreement on a park (we made a plan ) my son threw the biggest fit in the middle of the road. Suddenly both kids were screaming saying they didn't want this park they wanted another one. Even after they specifically told me the park we were currently headed too. Frustrating people, frustrating situation, change of plans, change of routine. But I was able to handle it. I had to tell myself there was a solution and we would go to another park. Disaster diverted. Still had our routine.
Now that one was easy but you can see how I have my triggers and some situations are easier for my sick mind to work out of.
There is a very very sick part of my mind that does tell me life is not worth living. That is not me. In fact it feels weird saying it out loud but it happens. And I know I'm not the only one and that's why I want to share it.
These moments are in my case rare but very serious. And I'm not a doctor but I would say this is a good time to go see one. Or even sooner if necessary.
We knew we were moving, we thought we knew when, no job, no money, but we knew we were supposed to move. This is how we got to arizona. We thought we had a place lined up we thought we had a full time job lined up. So we made preparations to move. The house didn't work out. We weren't real sure on the job our lease was ending and to my sick mind everything spiraled out of control. Everything looked so hopeless even though we were moving so Adam could go to school.
I'm going to call a chemical imbalance/depressed mind what it is, a sick mind. It is not me. Someone who has cancer doesn't say I am cancer. So therefore I am not depressed. I have a chemical imbalance that causing me to feel depression. Got the difference? I am a happy person who gets sick. When you see me you would probably never guess I struggle with feelings of hopelessness.
Read that a couple of times^
Eek can you tell I'm nervous to share the rare instances? Maybe I'll save it for another day. This post is long enough.