Thoughts are kept secret, they can hold so much power without us realizing because they aren’t action, just words in our heads. But they aren’t just words in our heads…
Thoughts can be like a garbage dump, it starts off as empty space but as more and more dumpster sized piles are left there, it becomes overwhelming to the point of running over into surrounding areas where the garbage doesn’t even belong. It can be in one place, but the smell or effects of this huge garbage dump can have a smell the lingers beyond the location.
My thoughts have done this in my head. And I would like to share my struggle in order to lay it all out on the table. To not seek sympathy, but to accept victory.
I often move at a fast pace. Not allowing myself the pleasure of seizing the day. Running from one thing to the next and carrying huge weight on my shoulders. May of 2009, my senior year in high school, prom and graduation was approaching… I sat in the car waiting for a friend and all of a sudden this tingling sensation took over my hands and face and I began to cry hysterically. My first instinct was to call my mother and as I cried out for no clear reason I didn’t know what to tell her was wrong. She calmed me down and it was over, I didn’t think much about it. That next Fall was my first year in college and it started happening more frequently. I didn’t know why… A feeling would almost take over my body out of nowhere and I would cry and cry without much warning. I was full of fear and a feeling of loneliness.
I soon realized it was anxiety… And I allowed that anxiety to take over my body and cause me to literally act out beyond my control. What was on my mind? School, relationship problems, the desire to be at home and not where I was… But all of it not worth my peace of mind. After returning home and attempting to surrender my worries to God it stopped happening, the last time was the summer of 2010.
The pace of my life has gone from what seems to had been normal to Turbo within the last few months. I got engaged in December, got a new job in Chicago in February, and my wedding is 186 days away. The pressure I have been currently feeling on top of my every day tasks has been a lot for me, and on top of 45 hours a week, and planning a wedding my desire to be a blogger and Artist has not left my mind. It all means so much to me, and as I became apprehensive I lost my time with God, I lost my dependency on the Rock of my salvation. Every single day I worried about me getting too far away to come back to Him, every single day I worried that my justification for sin I once loathed would send me right to Hell and that there was no redemption for me. I worried that my life wouldn’t be more than a full-time job and a wife. I thought I am not cut out for this, I can’t do it all. I thought…I just wanna die.
Two Fridays ago, I sat on the couch and for the first time in almost 4 years a held myself tightly and screamed into the pillows as if screaming for my life, well I guess I was. My mind was scattered beyond my own translation and I literally thought I was going to have a heart attack. My garbage thoughts and my body made me think I was dying, my left arm in pain and my heart racing as I contemplated asking someone for help. I didn’t want anyone to hear, but at the same time I did. All I was thinking about was my lacking relationship and pursuit of Christ and how I as a person just did not measure up in my eyes. I thought my life would end there, on the couch. I felt alone, but I isolated myself out of embarrassment of my behavior. I walked away to pray because of the symptoms I was feeling and ended up allowing fear to overpower my faith.
Two days later it happened again. I thought I was fine, I walked into church and I felt tremendous pressure. I felt conviction and was afraid. I was afraid of someone asking me how I was, and that I had missed so much church running to work that I did not belong. I felt the nervous feeling that usually means that I would be overwhelmed and I walked out. I went to the bathroom trying to calm down and this time I felt limp in my body on the left side, I had a excruciating headache, but then all the pressure went to only the left side. I was dizzy and instead of a heart attack, thought I was having a stroke, that I would die there in the church restroom. I called my dad hysterically and he tried all he could do calm me down while I was in a room alone and he was over a hundred miles away. I was in a panic, I was in fear, I was out of faith. My auntie found me and held me tight in prayer and all I could think was I want to die. I was deceived to the point that I wanted to die. As my young brother, sister, and fiancé looked on I am sure they were all wondering what is wrong… I couldn’t explain it beyond just not having peace. I had no peace, and I was at a point of depression that I had no desire for life. I describe the feeling as a breathless soul. My body had life but my soul had none, it was no longer inhaling or exhaling.
I read in Beth Moore’s Book ” When Godly People do Ungodly Things” that contrary to popular belief, everyone in sin aren’t enjoying themselves. Reading this I thought about myself, just because I party or do/say the wrong things doesn’t mean I am proud of it. I’m not proud and joyful in sin because I am created for God’s glory even when I do otherwise… And I am sure the critical judgmental eye would think her statement is not true, but someone who hasn’t been through anything wouldn’t understand would they? I digress…
My aunt continued to pray for me and I felt a calm come over my body and breath in my soul, though exhausted from the emotional turmoil. I knew that I needed Jesus, and my thought of my life ending became a thought of getting back to life.
My pursuit of God had dwindled away slowly, but the panic that I felt came all at once. The feeling of just going through my day to day routine became depression all at once, and even though I never understood how a person could get to that point I was there all at once.
I took a week of doing the minimum of extra activity beyond work, I made it my mission to seek out Peace in scripture and to make one my anchor (John 14:27 NLT&), and to accept all help and not allow shame to isolate myself. I felt life like I never have before. I went to church and I felt love like I never had before. I was swept away by the LOVE of Christ and His willingness to give me peace even though I strayed away from Him. He says in John 14:27 that He gives and not as the world does… He doesn’t give us peace based on merit or how hard we work, he doesn’t take it away but it is Always there for us to have. It is there for me to have! And even though I have a lot on my plate, He will not give me more than I can handle. It all became an ugly situation, but I have victory. As I mentioned before, I am not revealing for sympathy and for you to tip toe around me, but because I have victory! I allowed myself to be deceived the farther I strayed from God, but that day I chose victory over my enemy.
I am not depressed and apprehensive, I am not breathless, but full of life, and this is only the beginning. The cure for depression is Jesus! The cure for anxiety is Jesus!