Back Again.

I managed to climb my way out of a hole of depression on Tuesday afternoon – and once I did it was as if I’d come back through the magic wardrobe to find everything as I had left it, wondering if what I had experienced was real or imagined. Bryan was a little on edge, wary of my roller coaster emotional breakdowns. But he took it in stride as much as possible, accepting my apologies and not holding a grudge for lost time at work and added stress.

This time, the depression manifested itself in a deep loathing for myself that resulted in making everyone else around me feel as miserable as I did. I kept saying over and over to myself and anyone who asked me that I hated who I was, heaping all the troubles of my children, husband, and the world on my own shoulders as if I had failed everyone catastrophically. I had also suffered some setbacks during this time, sinning against Bryan and my kids with my anger.

A friend asked me if I knew whether my self loathing had precipitated my sin, or was the result of it. It was a good question, and one that I’m not sure I’ve figured out. All I know is that when I finally cracked my Bible and listened to the story being told to me through music, what really convicted me was the weight of an unrepentant heart. I think the situation in which I had sinned against my family came in the midst of a stressful weekend – one in which I was already sliding into self loathing. My actions simply punctuated what a horrible person I was, so rather than accepting the grace of God’s forgiveness, I continued beating myself up until I was drowning in my own hate.

I am very thankful for a patient husband, a longsuffering Savior in Jesus, and a community of friends who speak words of encouragement to me and get me out of the house when I can’t get myself out.

3 thoughts on “Back Again.”

  1. Welcome back Jen! I know how things can spiral out of control so quickly and then when you regain perspective you can’t work out why it happened. But it sounds like you’re on a great path. Now…a bible you say? I’m sure I’ve got one of those somewhere that could do with a read 🙂

  2. Dear Jen!
    I have read your blog off and on over the last year, taking a brief hiatus because I was becoming increasingly uncomfortable about your parenting, particularly your drinking and manifestation of anger towards Ruthie, wondering if an intervention on your behalf would be best for the children. I am not a person without compassion for your heartaches and inner turmoil. I know that in the past you chose not to take prescription medications for your depression and anger issues. Today, visiting your blog after not reading it for several months, I was saddened to see that you are again struggling with severe depression. I was hoping and praying from afar that all in your world would right itself and you would be truly free from struggle and heartache. So, I am suggesting that you give prescription medications (not naturopathic healing) another consideration. If not for yourself, for Ruthie and Thomas. They deserve it, and it may be the biggest gift that you can give them. Their childhood is slipping away while you rage through your emotions and ride your depression roller coaster. You have so very much to offer them. And your writing is a gift that you should share with the world. Allow yourself to do both.

  3. Jill –
    Thanks for your concern and for taking the time to comment. You have obviously noticed that my writing leans more toward lamenting and the drudgery of life. My blog cannot represent the totality of my experiences, but rather it is a slice of my life – and the particular slice I choose to share most often is The Struggle. I do this because it is my way of working it out. I have found that in my deepest honesty and nakedness, others nod along with me and say, ‘Yeah, me too. Thanks for saying that.’

    In the last six months I have actually felt a lot of freedom from anger and depression, and for the most part feel like a new woman. I no longer feel caged by it, but only occasionally overwhelmed. I am trying to reflect this transition in my writing, though it is more challenging for me to write compelling essays about things that bring me joy because there is nothing to be worked out. (A new bio on my ABOUT page reflects this transition).

    As for your suggestion, I see a professional therapist and am surrounded by a community of friends, family, my husband, and church-goers who know and love me. At any point, if any one of them tells me to go on medication, I will do it. I am deeply loved, cared for, and very wealthy in my friends. My children are loved. They have a keen understanding of sin, redemption, and forgiveness at a young age, because we all practice the process fervently in our household.

    If you choose to continue reading my blog – and I will not be offended if you quit – I encourage you to participate regularly in the conversation through the comments. Comment early, and comment often – I welcome the dialog.

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