I'm feeling super sad today. I'm not sure why. Maybe it's because my house is such a mess, maybe it's because my kids won't stop fighting or maybe it's because I was up all night with a crying baby (for the last week and a half!) Whatever it is though - I'm ready to just give up and go sit in a corner and cry!
I've had some problems with depression in the past, especially since having kids, and have felt myself really fighting it since Sunday. What do you do when you feel depressed?
Right now I feel like I'm at the brink of a cliff, teetering on the edge of a dark pit. I can't see the bottom, but I've been down there and I know how hard it is to climb out again.
I feel like there is a bit of a stigma toward depression, clinical or not, particularly among members of my faith. I've felt it even more since moving to Idaho Falls. No one seems to want to admit their short comings. No one wants to admit that they have a problem, and no one wants to be the one who asks for help.
I've seen studies on it in the past, Latter-day Saint women are one of the groups with the highest depression rate. Mainly because we are trying so hard to be perfect in every aspect of our lives. I think it's great to strive for perfection, but all of us need to realize that perfection is not possible!
I do believe that living in accordance to gospel standards and living the way that The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day-Saints teaches is the way to happiness, particularly for me. But I'm not sure that it is the cure all for all depression.
From the time I was very young the answers for depression were "Pray harder," or "Loose yourself in service to others." "Put off the natural man." "Rely on the Spirit." I do believe that this advise is good, and can be helpful, but I don't think that it is all encompassing or all healing.
I've taken anti-depressant medication in the past, and although it helped me through some very difficult times I didn't like who I became on the medication. True I wasn't sad, but I wasn't happy either. I felt like I was just drifting through life in neutral. I was numb to all emotion.
So what is the answer? I've heard things like "Just decide! Decide that you're going to be happy." Will that really work? Can my own will power be enough to squash the depression monster?
Do I just need to accept that life isn't perfect? I cannot control every thing and some days my house is going to be messy and I am going to be too tired to do anything about it.
What makes me a "Good Mom"? Is being a "Good Mom" yelling at my kids until they clean up their messes (leaving me without a voice and my kids in tears) or would I be a better Mom if I just let the mess slide and spend the day watching cartoons and playing video games?
So what's the answer? Is there an answer? Am I the only one dealing with this!?
Naomi Gwenaelle Grant
1 month ago