THE WORDS OF THIS FB POST ARE WRITTEN AT THE VERY BOTTOM OF THIS BLOG IN CASE IT IS TOO SMALL TO SEE. However, first thing first, and that is to talk about what helped me and might hopefully help others be delivered from depression.
1. BECOME AWARE (AND MAYBE FED UP)
I became aware that I was dealing with depression through the commercials on tv and by hearing about it before. I got tired of always feeling tired and down. I got tired of crying all the time. I got tired of the thoughts of worthlessness, and the mental attacks I had to suffer with. I got tired of it and fed up with it so I began researching my symptoms. I learned that I was dealing with depression and that I was not crazy or alone.
2. SPEAK OUT
Another step I took in healing from depression and suicidal thoughts was to speak out. I spoke to my parents, to my spouse, to my friend, and even confessed on a post about it. I took away the power of silence from the disease of suicidal depression.
3. TAKE CONTROL
The next thing I did was take control. I took control of...
*MY SELF, AND
~My Mind - Praying, meditating, reading the Word of God, writing, fasting, and detoxing my 5 senses (more details below) helped me take control of my mind.
~My Self- I TOOK CONTROL, FIRST, BY LETTING GO OF TRYING TO CONTROL THINGS. Let me make it clear that I did see myself as a controlling person. But I had to learn that we all desire to have some level of control in the outcome of our own lives as well as our loved ones. We want things to work out and whenever we worry, it's because something is uncomfortably not in our control. Well, in letting go to take control, I had to surrender to the fact that I couldn't control the thoughts, actions, well being, or outcomes of anyone; not of my spouse, not of my child, not of my parents, friends, or anyone. I could only control my PRESENT self. I couldn't change the past or predict the future. Again, I had to take control of my present self. I did this by choosing myself.
➡ (In case you'd like more details): The way I chose myself was by going to a workout boot camp one Saturday morning. It took one choice, one day. From there, I chose to continue going to this workout group for 1 hour every Tues and Thurs. That was 2 hours out of the week of me choosing myself. I was breaking BUT I was building. What had been broken and shattered within me was now mending, renewing and getting stronger.
~My Environment/Atmosphere - Everything I've mentioned is a work in progress. Especially controlling my environment. The way I control my environment is by keeping a "prison or paradise mentally". I was certainly in a mental prison in my depression and going back to that mental prison is something I absolutely refuse to do. So, I fight to keep negative thoughts, negative words, negative energy, and negative people away. If any of those arise, I fight to let go or leave and I protect my mental well being at all costs. For example, if I feel tense, uncomfortable, overwhelmed or any negative energy, I either voice how I feel, do something to change it, or I leave. I create my "mental paradise" by keeping my thoughts and attitude positive, uplifting, and loving.
Praying, fasting, meditating and everything mentioned above is a part of taking action, there are some tangible things I did as well. I started detoxing my mind and my 5 senses (what I hear, see, smell, taste, and touch).
***DETOXING the 5 senses of Smell, Taste, Hearing, Sight, and Touch
➡SMELL- I burnt incense, like myrrh, frankincense, palo santo, and lavender and I boiled oils like spearmint, lemongrass, sage, rosemary, and eucalyptus, and I researched the benefits/effects of certain aromas and utilized it. I specifically liked to sniff the spearmint and eucalyptus lotion from Bath and Body Works and felt some calmness and relief from doing so.
➡TASTE - I had to slowly alter my taste buds and get away from foods that cloud my head, slow me down, and negatively effect the hormones that control/influence my mood and emotions like foods with MSG, high fructose, mono-, glycerine, and other food additives. At first, I didn't start by taking away all the bad foods, but by ADDING MORE GOOD FOODS. I drank herbal teas, cooked with herbs (like cumin, fennel seeds, tumeric, etc.), made smoothies with superfoods, and eventually took in more nutrition and less bad food. I learned that my body wasn't hungry for food, but for nutrition. The more nutrition I took in, the less hungry I would be, and the more energy, clear head, focus, positive thinking and self control I would have. I specifically took ASHWAGANDHA which majorly helped decrease my depression and bad thoughts. I also occasionally took cascara sagrada (a natural herb) to help detox my body. [Avoid foods with MSG, mono-, high fructose, etc.]
➡HEAR - I detoxed my hearing by getting rid of negative talk or music. Anyone or any music that brought me down, spoke negatively, cussed or used fowl, aggressive, abusive, or offensive language, I stopped listening to it or them. However, I didn't have much of that in my life anyway. The most negativity I had was in my head so I listened to a lot of motivational speeches and videos on youtube, inspirational music, christian music, gospel music, and a variety of music that felt relatable.
➡SIGHT - I avoided certain shows, movies, and imagines, and stopped any binge watching and being on social media or spending lots of time taking or editing pics so that I could be in the more moment and invest in more personal time with my daughter, others, nature, and myself. I kept positive posts/words or visuals on the wall or somewhere on me and frequently took in positive sights like a stroll through the flower dept at Kroger, pics of nature online, went to the park, and often went and sat in my car somewhere to just have some space. (Some of my binge shows were Nikita, Vampire Diaries, The Originals, and Game of Thrones. Binge watching is very dangerous. Please do not try this at home! Lol!)
➡TOUCH/FEEL - First, let me say, "SOMETIMES, YOU JUST HAVE TO CRY. CRY AND PRAY. PRAY AND CRY. CRY AND CRY SOME MORE! OWN IT! LET THE TEARS CLEANSE AND HEAL YOU." That said, I became more self aware of how the things would make me feel. Like, what foods, smells, or noises gave me headaches or made me irritable. I also sought out hugs when needed. For example, I'd hug on my daughter or drive to my mom's just to get a hug and then leave. Sometimes I would write, video record, or audio record how I felt.
5. DO NOT GO BACK! (CONTINUE DOING WHAT WORKS FOR YOU)
The last thing I did was, I chose not to ever go back. Once I experienced that small bit of strength and that ray of light, I refused to allow myself to return to the darkness or to brokenness ever again. I kept moving forward. I kept pressing on. As the quote that someone recently told me goes, "Slow progress is still progress." I continued to chose to take control of myself and take time for myself. Even now, whenever I feel any speck of even a shadow trying to come upon me, I repeat the things mentioned and do whatever is needed to not sink back into that pit.
Please know that I am not a certified or licensed expert! The only source my advice comes from is my life experiences and God-given wisdom. If you are suffering from any sort of depression or suicidal thoughts, some of this information MAY OR MAY NOT help, but I urge you to PLEASE consult a licensed professional or contact a suicide hotline asap!
Below was one of my previous Facebook posts, (posted above) which states...
"So it's been a week since Mother's Day and I have continuously contemplated on making this post, so I'm just gonna go for it. This pic was me most of last year and the year before. I was in deep depression on the spectrum of wanted to hurt myself or worse. I mostly smiled through the pain. Some days were worse than others. Some days I would feel great and out of nowhere a dark cloud would come over my head for different periods of time. I thought about posting about it back then (which is why I took pics of me crying). I thought that sharing it might help someone else going through the same. But I was too ashamed to post it. I didn't want to come across as complaining, ungrateful, or crazy even. I guess I was going through post partum depression but didn't get diagnosed. The clinics just seemed to want money and not really care. Anyway, although this is late, this is on behalf of the mothers who suffer in silence or are going through any form of depression, anxiety, frustration, loneliness, or any struggle in life. Keep your head up. Stay strong. Stay positive. Fight! And seek help if needed."