traditionally this is a day we remember what it is we have to be thankful for. A day to remember the good things in our lives. There is so much in my life I have been given and many blessings I have received, but today I want to talk about the thing in my life that scares me the most.
If you were to ask me “Jed, what do you fear?” And so on the outside I would say “Time, it’s the one thing we cannot control, it moves forward without abandon.” And so yes this is true, time will tell us when it’s time to die, it will take our bodies slowly to that grave, if we squander it-it is gone forever. You can’t fix time, what we do with our time is final.
But if I was to tell you my true fear; that which keeps me awake, deteriorates my mind, makes me forget all that I have.
The answer is depression.
I have battled depression for my whole adult life. A demon intent on tearing me down.The thoughts of being alone, suicide, and rejection cripple me. Over time I noticed patterns and realized that I had seasonal depression. Winters are bad…. real bad , and times of daylight with exercising we’re good…. real good!
I never wanted help and determined to fight this war on my own. For years this worked. I climb, ski, and in the winter make sure I’m getting sun.
I also noticed that external factors affected me. Anger brought me down, so I worked on forgiveness and acceptance. Relationships brought me down, so I was careful who I called “friend”. Patterns of self destruction brought me down, so I tried to hold on to my identity.
This all work, I thought I was progressing! I was doing it on my own, reading, listening, finding happiness inside. Life was good, and it was good for a long time.
then life changed. In a period of 2 years I lost myself. Stress’ arose. Work overwhelmed. I stopped doing all the things that kept me healthy. The demon returned. And not only did it return, it took to the darkest place I never wanted to see again and deeper to it’s pit of hell.
I cared for nothing. I loved nothing. I saw nothing in this life I wanted to hold on to. I had left this world and accepted my life was over. The times were dark, and I was alone.
On the outside, ya I was stressed with it all. On the inside every day was a step in a plan to take my life.
Then a for what ever reason something broke through. I can’t tell you what it was but I woke one day scared of myself and determined to just take a step. I was lucky, I don’t know how or why but something clicked.
I started writing, reading, looking for something.
At this same time a friend became close and she was so open and loving.
And through this family and friends without knowing the depth of my turmoil encouraged me to go to counseling. They thought I was just dealing with work and overwhelmed.
I was hiding and trying to do it by myself. It worked but I kept crashing. I would hold onto my friends love and hang out with other healthy peeps. I discovered I had been doing life for all the wrong reasons, I had forgotten the little boy who looks at life through fresh eyes.
One step forward….
Two steps back….
Crash and pick myself back up….
today I am thankful I’m alive.
I was one of the lucky ones. I found a friend. I realized I can’t do this on my own. I’m finding the boy inside who wants life, to see life with new eyes. I was taught what love is.
I know the path is not going to be smooth.
I will struggle.
today I am thankful for a friend who knows me. I told you my life, and you held my hand.
We in this life are not alone, we all on this planet can not do it alone.