Posts Tagged With: depression

Small Steps

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I seriously need to spend some time researching formatting. Every time I think I have it figured out, I’m wrong. Persistence!!

I took a step back from everything after my last post. I know I am not in this current trial to thrash around like a fish dying on the shore, which is very much what it felt like I was quickly becoming. I have been asking Jesus and Father for some time, “Who am I, and how do I find out, and what does that mean?” I am not one who can believe none of this has meaning-not my single life being lived, not the grass growing (or trying to in Texas) outside even. As has been evidenced by much of my writing here, this is a question I have wrestled with. Who am I? Why am I here, what am I to do? Specifically, not the platitudes of “make the world a better place” and such. My initial reaction to such is always an internal “Duh…do I look like an idiot??” even if I don’t give voice to it.

I am realizing it has been a journey to accept the fact of personhood, for me. Perhaps that is a result of the abuse, the loss of identity that goes with it. Perhaps it is a result of my childhood, the constant derision of my dreams and goals, the statements of “that isn’t what you really want/think/feel/mean/etc”, and the being forced into the mold my mother had for me, which never ever fit. Whatever the cause, some of the heart work of the last two weeks made me realize I was feeling guilty, STILL, for even existing. For being. That despite thinking I had grown past it, the repeated message of “you were a mistake, if I had a choice you wouldn’t be here” beginning when I was very small was still influencing me, still cutting and tearing deep inside, still undermining any confidence or sense of “I am, and that is right and good.” I spent many hours one day with a close friend, talking through this and other aspects, and discovering that this wound is still there, unhealed. Denial is a powerful blinder. One wants to think they’ve dealt with something, and it’s done, done for good, I’m all better now, thank-you-very-much!

Unearthing that though was key. My behaviors lately have baffled me. Why am I panicking SO MUCH?! It’s not the first time I’ve been around this mountain. I’ve been unemployed and wondering where and how my children and I will live more times than I want to admit. I’ve scratched and fought and worked my way back to a place of being able to make it only to have my feet kicked out from under me, multiple times. Although I think sometimes God tries to keep my blood pressure at 210/115, He always comes through. I wish He weren’t so fond of the dramatic last minute (or second) rescue, but I don’t have much say in that LOL! What I do have a say in though is my response. Realizing I felt like I DID NOT have a say in my response, as I could not be my own person, because I did not deserve to exist…THAT has made a difference.

In the midst of that, Spirit finally said “It’s time…” regarding taking the RHETI test. I have been researching the Enneagram since this last winter, off and on, as some people I deeply respect and regard as teachers and mentors use it for their own growth. The more I learned about the origins, development, and applications of the Enneagram I began to think this might be an extremely useful tool in my life, growth, and healing. I would not let myself read about the types, as I did not want to know before taking the test. So when Spirit led, and I had a morning all to myself in quiet, I did. And I think I will be blogging about it for a while. The test was amazingly accurate, and in being so it also mysteriously afforded me permission to Be Who I Am, and gave me hints as to who that is. I am still processing, will be, and will do some of that processing here. Looking forward to that!

Also, I am working slowly through a writing course. It took me the first 2 weeks to accept that I had been accepted, so now I am playing catch up *rolls eyes at self* The course is teaching me also about myself…who I am. What is my rhythm, how do my words work, what do I need to write, and increasingly, that I *am* a writer, and I can embrace that. There are signs of life stirring deep inside, life in this area that I have fought so hard and pushed down in fear so much. Words are coming now, story pouring out. I have much to learn…but the plug has been unstopped. Thank the Lord!

Categories: Faith and Wrestling, Healing & Growing | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 3 Comments

Changes?

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The past week or so has been interesting, internally. I find myself doing much pondering, and much avoiding of it.

The 14th was my 2 months since my injury. I do not think I have EVER spent anything near this long in bed. I had no idea that when I first went down, it would be for anything but a few days. I was, after all, due back at work for the elderly couple I took care of a couple weeks after, once they returned from vacationing in New Mexico. I had a kitchen to paint in the meantime, and other things to do around the home to make it start to feel like “our” home. I had my daily horse job, 7 days a week, twice a day, and then I had my own Minis-to-be-used-somehow-one-day to take care of. My kids, school starting…

Then one day, this.

I have been alternating trying to listen and running away inside. Running away, daydreaming, has been winning more here lately.

Do I trust You, Lord? Does the north wind blow?
Do I trust You, Lord? Does the river flow?
You can see my heart, You can read my mind
and You’ve got to know I would rather die
than to lose my faith in the One I love.
Do I trust You?
(lyrics from an old Twila Paris song from the 80’s)

That song kept me alive, more than once. I have never been able to escape the lyrics. He knows how deeply I mean them.

For the first time, I find myself wondering about “I would rather die than to lose my faith…”

There are times it feels like He has taken you out into the desert and left you. I have felt like Hagar the last few years, for various reasons. But He wasn’t the one to desert her in the desert. He was the one to send an angel to lead her to food and water, and to keep her safe.

There is more to this than I can see.

Three things hit me last week, and one this.
Three different women followed my blog, and going to visit their’s…well, the first two kicked me in the gut. They are doing what I said I was going to do here-be real. Yet there are secrets I have not told here. Ways I feel impressed to tell, to hopefully help others, but I have been too afraid. The internet, after all, is very searchable. I have children to raise that I love with all of me. There are/were jobs I needed, and my …situation is one that is not only stigmatized, it is stigmatized and attacked and said it doesn’t exist by people who cannot even begin to fathom what it is like to live with. What it has been like, for 43 yrs or so. Those who accept the reality often mis-portray it. I couldn’t have an employer or prospective, searching me and finding this. Or family.

But those young women, half my age, are being so much braver than I. They are doing what I knew He was leading me to do from the start, but I have been too afraid, and I have tried instead to …to what? Do what I have had to do my whole life, keep the masks on and be what others needed me to be.

The third woman had sites on her blog that kicked me more. http://www.psychcentral.com is an amazing website. I spent 2 days in obsessive mode, reading reading reading. I took a few of the quizzes. “If you score 14 or higher, you have a very high likelihood of having PTSD”. I know this….I scored 23. Took the psychopathy test from my ex’s vantage point..after 20 yrs with someone, you know their answers to stuff, esp when you have to study them daily to avoid the worst of the abuse. Way into the “your score indicates you could well have serious psychopathic tendencies”. Again, I know this, about him. I was told by medical professionals and others…Of course the site is not diagnosing, but encouraging you to seek help, and actual diagnostics. Won’t happen with him. I have been seeking for years, but not finding.

Then this week I have to get some paperwork for the state, for the Medicaid they are putting me on so I can get some of this taken care of, as the MRI taped me out. He told me to start the disability paperwork. Told me I am “permanently disabled”.

I am still processing that.

Depression has been biting, hard. I need to be with my children. I want to go home. I need income, NOW, not 2 yrs from now when the process of getting on disability is done. I am tired of this. I do not want to be disabled. Yet I still cannot even make it to the bathroom without help, or stand up, for that matter. I have rent to pay, and utilities, and such. The more I try/look/research, the more I am finding out I am not currently qualified to apply for most freelance writing or etc jobs. I have signed up for more survey sites than I like, and spent hours to have a total of 5 points? and it takes 1,000 to get $10? I’ve spent 5 hrs working on a Crowdsource site, to earn $5.41. I have listed horses for sale, quality Minis, for very fair prices, and I have gotten “the checks in the mail” but no checks, written contracts and sent after hours of discussion never to hear from them again, and a variety of crazies. There are so many nuts in the animal world…sigh. The people, not the animals. I am working on courses to learn, so I *can* qualify for freelance work, but that will take time. I do not have time.

So, Jesus, what now? My children NEED me. But I’m told I cannot go home to them, because there is no one there to take care of me. What do You want of me, Lord?
I think there will be some changes to this site.

And if I can ever figure out how to get the pictures to line up right again, I will feel like I conquered something.

Categories: Depression, Faith and Wrestling, Healing & Growing, Pain and mourning | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

Ugh…then Hope

Ugh.
It’s been an “Ugh” sort of week, but tides are turning. My friends’ friend’s suicide started things off with grief in my heart-for her, for him, for so many. I avoided the Robin Williams topic when that happened, because so many were speculating and writing and it just seemed..I didn’t need to participate. I am sorry for his family…for their loss. What an incredible human he was. As this man also was. They have found peace now, and healing, I am sure, in the arms of One who knows. But still…it hurts those here. And for that, I grieve, and give thanks yet again that I wasn’t successful.

Medication changes this week also didn’t help. New pain killer, new muscle spasm med, both cause depression and yup boy do they! Getting adjusted now, and that is backing off, thankfully.

And then was told that the specialist my Dr referred me to is retiring in 4 wks, so I have to go back for a different referral. Yippee…ugh. Did I ever mention I hate going to the Dr, for anything?

That said…it’s raining again. In Texas!! WooHoo!!! It’s been raining since yesterday, even. Twice in about a week…and somehow, there is hope again. I also have never understood how rain is depressing…and now, especially so, seeing how we get so very little. Rain is life, and hope, and verdant green all encased in tiny droplets, one after the other. My heart needed it, so much. Almost as much as the parched earth.

There was a writing prompt a few days ago, asking what are five things you would change about your life. Thinking on it, I come up with:
1. Steady work with reasonable income that I don’t have to worry about
2. A home of my own, with acreage and a barn too
3. General good health, but esp this back issue over
4. To be out of debt, completely, and able to stay there-see point 1.
5. I’m having trouble coming up with #5. I’d lose about 50#’s..but that kind of goes with #3. To be married to the man I love, but I don’t necessarily mean State sanctioned marriage. Marriage is more than that, and is, in my opinion, between God and the two involved…the State only needs to come into it if you want the “benefits” they offer. That said, he and I have a ways to go in healing, and after the abuse of his first wife, he “doesn’t believe in marriage anymore”. That’s a statement out of his wounds, and they are deep. So that is in God’s hands. But it is hard having him and my sons under different roofs! I’d say to be able to work from home, so I can be a stay at home Mom, be there for them…as that is, in many ways, ALL I want. My kids are growing…they won’t be home much longer. I ache to be there, and to be able to do all of the “little stuff”…

So, I guess I’ll leave #5 open, for now.
If there were 5 things you could change, what would they be?

Categories: Depression, Faith and Wrestling, Goals and Desires, Healing & Growing, Pain and mourning | Tags: , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

On Suicide

Two nights ago, I received the news that a dear friend of mine had lost a friend to suicide. This was a man she’d and her husband had known for many years. A man that she said everyone looked to for encouragement, help, that he loved to help others and was always a light for those who needed one. No one knew…no one even suspected. She is wracked now by the question of “Why”?! It hits her hard and fast, an upper-cut to the gut, throughout the day. Why did he do it, why didn’t he talk to anyone, and I’m sure a hundred other “Why’s”. I hurt for her, and her family. For his. For all those whom his life touched, and it sounded like that was quite a few. I pray about the ramifications, the ripples that reach out to those he has supported, encouraged, loved on. Jesus, come…

I’ve attempted suicide myself, three times. Once when I was twelve, and could no longer take the pain. Thank God I didn’t cut deep enough. Twice more, in the last few years, when there was no one and the pain was too deep, too wide, too much. Thankfully, I didn’t take enough pills.

I did these things despite a deep and abiding love of and faith in Christ, in Father, in Spirit.
I did these things because humans have only so much of a pain tolerance, and people don’t suicide to die. They suicide because the pain is too much for too long without hope, without any sight of anything possibly ever being different.

Suicide is not rational…however, in the moment, it appears as the only rational thing there is. The only possible way out. You have begged God and others for any reason to hope, any reason for anything, and it appears to have come up empty and you are left with despair and pain that pushes the boundaries of sanity and sometimes, it pushes too far.

Thank God His grace is sufficient. His love is from everlasting to everlasting. And He is so much more gentle with us than we are, when we are caught in the depths of despair and agony.

There are a number of things that disturb me with how we “treat” depression. I wish we as humans were better at reaching out to each other, at watching over each other. Every time, I hear “Why didn’t he/she ask for help/call someone/talk to someone…” Isolation is huge in those places, alone is what you know. For most people in that much pain, simply asking “Can I talk to you” or “Do you have a minute” takes effort equal to moving a mountain. I have a few people in my life who are suicidal, depressed…I know that now. At one point, I didn’t. But Spirit nudged when one said “Can I talk” and I didnt really have time…but I made time. And I learned about the mental abuse he lives with, and what it has done to him (though he doesn’t totally realize that yet).

I will have to go into more, another day. Out of time, right now…

Categories: Depression, Pain and mourning | Tags: , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Fire, Medical Bills, and What I Am Made For

 

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This has been more than a bit of an eventful week.

 

 

 

 

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s a link to a “Go Fund Me” page (Never heard of them before, who knew? Very cool sight though!) I began earlier this week. The shorter “I’m in shock and somewhat panicked” story is there.  This is the more intimate version. Any help anyone feels led to give is very appreciated. Including better ways to edit the page, or say what I said LOL!  I break down the particulars of the goal amount below.

OK, so I’m one of those “crazy horse people”. Have been for as long as I can remember, and according to my family, from well before that.  In 1994 I saw a flyer for a Miniature Horse Show, had that weekend off of work, and went to it. A month later I had my first mini, a 29″ black-bay beautiful little stallion I had fell in love with at the show, he was my tiny “Black Stallion” (for the Walter Farley readers out there). I honestly owe Mr. Farley, as well as CW Anderson and Marguerite Henry a huge debt, as their equine books played a large part in keeping me alive, by giving me an escape as a child.

I have never believed in breeding anything but the best. It is in my opinion, unethical. It is the animal that has to live with the issue, and having some physical issues myself, I can appreciate the pain, fatigue, and mental wear that go into that. I also though am firmly opposed to the “nev

er breed animals if you do you are wrong” camp. If responsible breeders who understand genetics and who love their breed/species don

‘t breed, then all those wonderful genetics are lost, and the only people breeding are the ones we don’t want doing so but have no effective way to stop anyhow…and once again, it is the animals who suffer.  But that’s a different subject.

I spent from ’94-98 researching, basically, and did purchase two quality mares during that time. I was, however, looking for a Reason, a niche, some lack that I could fulfill. And, in ’98, I found it, though it took me another year to really decide that. It was the Winks Miniature. Now, Winks Shetlands are well known, and deservedly so. The Winkelmans have been breeding Shetland ponies since the 1880’s, the current Bill is the 4th generation pony man, and I hope one of his sons takes over. Winks Shetlands have formed the foundation of many of the best breeding programs out there, and have been used as the outcross lines for others. But back in ’73 Bill delved into Minis for a short time, a time that ended in ’86 when he was going through some very rough patches in his life. During those 13 yrs, 30 registered Miniatures were foaled that carried the Winks prefix, and at the beginning his foundation mare, Wink Decision, was purchased. By the time I kept running across the name in pedigree after pedigree of Mini that I really respected, and was speaking with breeders who had used the horses in their programs, there were literally a handful left. Sixteen had been lost in ’86…of the remaining 15, 7 were alive, and all but one were into their 20’s.

I was able to bring home 4 of them, though two were past breeding age, and daughters of 3 others. Carefully line breeding, and including outcrosses to exceptional other foundation lines such as FWF Little Blue Boy, Orion Light Van’t Huttenest, and Dels Cowboy, has consistently produced healthy, quality mini horses with wonderful temperaments that have actually primarily ended up in therapy-type homes. I have a Mini on the mission field in Taiwan, one that is a cystic fibrosis therapy horse, one that is part of a literacy program for children, another who is a therapy animal to an Iraq vet with PTSD. Those sorts of things.

I sold most of the herd off earlier this year. It was not what my heart wanted to do, but it happened towards the end of a 6 month major depressive cycle, even though I was on my meds (at max dosage allowed)….I am diagnosed MDD, PTSD, and something else myself. I was suicidal, and in a really bad place, basically. The horses were sold because I wanted them tended if I went through with “it”. And God brought a buyer who wanted to carry on, she said, and we became friends and she actually helped to pull me out of that cycle partially.

Her daughter tracked me down this past week, as they did not have contact info. Kate was severely injured, lost her husband, home, and everything, in a fire the end of July. The horses have been in foster homes, but Kate and I had an agreement that if she ever had to sell them, they’d come back to me, and once she was able to speak again, told her daughter to get in contact with me. I need to bring the horses home. It feels like a fresh start…like a Jesus thing, completely. In the months since selling them, I’ve been floundering…Jesus, what do you want ME to do with my life?? and knowing in my heart that I had given up on what He wanted when I sold them. The horses are to be part of what He has for me to do. It has been a dream for years to use them with abuse survivors and victims, with PTSD patients, with “mental illnesses” like the depression I suffer from. The horses have saved my life more than once, with their soft muzzles and warm hearts and what they somehow know what I need, when I need it, including horsey hugs to their necks, standing with me while I cry and pressing close, etc.  What they have done for me, they can also do for others.

All of this said, if I was in a position to purchase them back, it’d have been done already. I am a single mother, had an unexpected move August 1st that has put me in a much better home and property, but had to go in debt to do..and I honestly need help. I would also like to give Kate double what she paid me for them, to help with her medical bills. She will ALWAYS have access to the horses, whenever she is ready visit them again. So, here is the breakdown of the $5000 I am attempting to raise:

  • $2500 for Kate
  • $1000 for fencing 2 stallion runs and fixing the fence that needs fixing in the field, and gas monies to go get them
  • $1500 for another shelter, as the one I have now works for the 3 minis we have left, but will not hold 7, and winter is coming

You can visit my very not-updated website if you want to see some of the horses…www.enyalien.com   I have Sonata, Princess, and Two-Bit left of what’s on the site. I would be bringing home Jangles/Classic, Fancy, Silk, and Lillie.

Thank you for prayers, good thoughts, and any help you are able to donate!

Categories: Depression, Goals and Desires, Healing & Growing, Horses, Pain and mourning | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

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