Come with me on a journey. Before you read any further take a minute and consider this, if you could do anything, go anywhere, be anyone, see everything without the fear of failure, the fear of cost, and the fear of disappointment, what would you do?
Once you have pondered that question, please take a few moments to comment any and ALL things that came to the forefront for you.
Now that we got that out of the way. Today while going for my morning walk and listening to Andrea Owen’s Kickass Life podcast, I decided that I wanted to share with you the homework that my life coach has given me, to consider the same thing that I just asked of you. This morning my post was all planned out based upon my personal homework, but just a few minutes ago I came across a FB post that I thought lent a little more significance to this one, “15 Habits of People with Concealed Depression.”
That article made me change this post is for one reason only. I have suffered from depression for most of my life, and trying to see that all things are possible has always been a struggle. Truth. There were days, if not weeks that I would not leave my house except to take my daughter to school, nor would I shower. Pretty gross right!? Well, when you feel like you do not matter to the world, or that people would be better off without you, or the endless feeling hopelessness; taking a shower is the least of your problems. I have many people ask me to define and put words into what a person feels when they are depressed. I have tried many times, and the words sound so hollow compared to what it actually feels like. Without a doubt, I can say that looking at life and thinking of what I would do if all things were possible was not something one does who faces depression.
Over the course of the last few years, I have worked extremely hard to get well, to grow as a person, and to become the person that I feel in my spirit, deep down in my soul. Ya know? The first step for me in believing that all things are possible, was to see my doctor and begin my regimen of antidepressants. I have been off and on medication for years. As with many people, when I began to feel better from taking my medication, I would then believe that I no longer needed them. Only to come back to them again. This is the first time that I have accepted and am okay with the fact that I will need to take medication for my depression for the rest of my life.
The second step in believing that all things are possible was to believe in my own self-worth. Racism does have a lingering effect, and I know all too well how it impacts your self-worth and how you view the world. I grew up in a small town and was one of, like, five black kids. There were no other examples of people like me. For the longest time, I never really thought there was a difference between me and my class mates until the kids started to point out the differences. They weren’t mean about it, but they saw how my hair was always in braids with barrettes on the ends. I can say for sure, none of the white kids did that with their hair. This just a small example, but one that I remember so vividly. While living in this town and watching a lot of TV as a latch-key kid, I also didn’t see many examples of people like me on the small screen either. Can we say Beverly Hills 90210?
I began to view my world so differently and always considered what all those differences meant. As a little kid I believed that only white girls with blond hair and blue eyes could wear pink. Thank you, Barbie (insert eye roll). I also believed that only white kids had dimples. Crazy right?! As I grew, so the did the glaring sign that I was different. So, I have always felt a sense of inadequacy. Then came junior high and the beginning of my seventh grade year. The friends that I had made while being on the bottom of the totem pole in sixth grade were now calling me a nigger as I walked through the hallway. Wow! Did a lot of things change in the short few months of summer. Let’s just say the road was rough from that moment forward until graduation, which is all a story for a later date. The point is, that I had a lot people and things telling me that I wasn’t worth much. Let us not forget the absentee father, who’s disappearances said the same thing..
This year has been a year of accepting all the awesomeness, sadness, kindness, and sauciness that comes inside this package that I call myself. It has take A LOT of work to be aware of my negative self-talk, and to see when I am presenting myself with a lack of confidence. It has taken a lot of work on expressing my opinions and ideas without apologies or explanations. I know that I slip at times, but who doesn’t. I am a continuous work in progress, but the most important thing is that I have began to dream about what is possible.
I have never really known who I am, but I am finding it fun to find out. I dream bigger dreams and never once think that it can’t be done. Summer flowers smell sweeter, the wind that blows my hair around my face feels softer, and the sound of summer rain is no longer a sign of helplessness. It is just another reason why I love our planet and all that can be seen in it. So, if this post happens to find you when you feel helpless, please know that it can get better.