I don’t think I have been vocal about my mental health issues on this blog. I may have been writing stuff on my struggles, but not once did I ever admit that I am depressed.
Back in college when we tackled mental health in Psychiatric Nursing, it was not a secret that most people don’t seek for medical attention for conditions concerning the psychological functioning of the brain. It used to be a taboo in our society and seeking for psychistric help will not make a good impression on others especially if you have a reputation to protect.
But long are those days when we cannot speak about depression and more broadly, mental health. I graduated in college in 2011. 7 years later, here I am, braving the online world and openly admitting that I have been through depression myself and still not sure if I have overcome it or continuing to battle it.
One thing anyone should know about depression is that it is as serious as cancer and it affects our bodies just the same as cancer cripples the lungs, bone, liver etc. It is an illness and it should be treated with professional help.
Over the period of 7 years, from 2011 to the present, I witnessed people go through depression. I have friends who have come to me and tell me they’re depressed. I have read news on people committing suicide because of depression. I myself became depressed which may have been due to what I can call the eternal quarter life crisis.
To add to a directionless life I was treading, there was social media. Of course, there are other much profound causes of depression such as problems at work, with partners, with finances, with bullies, but If I could name 1 major factor that leads to depression “these days”, I would definitely say, SOCIAL MEDIA.
People seeing their peers having the time of their lives mislead their brains into thinking that they have it all and that they are living THE life, and that one wrong action no one should ever do, but they do still, is to COMPARE.
That, my friends is one simple recipe for disaster. I know this because I’ve been there and I have definitely done that.
Good thing though, we now have evolved into a society that embraces negativity in such a way that helps motivate and encourage positivity despite these struggles. We have accepted depression as a serious condition that we should also give as much attention as we give to those with toothache or cancer. We have also learned to recognize symptoms of depression and how to extend support to those who need it. And as many as those celebrities who have come forward to admit that they have been sexually harrassed, or who have come out of the closet to say that they have HIV or are gay, are those who have also bravely come into the light to say that they have been battling or battled depression.
One good thing that this coming out into the open resulted to is that more and more have been aware. More have been encouraged, more have been helped, and more are inspired to do the same.
So even though I am going through a lot of these issues myself, I won’t let them overpower me. I want to fight it just as much as we want to fight poverty, injustice, and all things evil. I want to keep fighting for my friends who are also going through the same thing. I want to keep fighting because this world has still so much good in it. I want to keep fighting because I have family and friends who love me deeply and I have a God who empowers me and holds my hand tightly through it all.
I have not sought for any professional help mainly because of financial reasons, but should I find someone who can charge reasonably, I would definitely go for it! Although over the past years, I have learned to cope and get by through prayer.
Our brain is such a powerful tool. Many have achieved and invented remarkable things that have been put to good use because of it, but sadly there have also been downsides to having such an organ, but it isn’t a secret that we are in control of it and we can make it work to our advantage.
I know I have a long way to go to overcome this, but what works for me now is PRAYER. Some may not think that this can help, but here I am still, never giving up, because I believe in a God of overflowing mercy, kindness and love and that is where I hold on to. Apart from reading self help books and articles, talking to really great friends like JANNINA, who has a brain of a genius, at the end of day, I talk to Him alone. I know that He is out there, and He won’t give up on me.
And that is how I am able to manage my depression and I’m proud of how far I have come since.
Hope this helps and lights up something you can hold on to! If you are suffering from depression, there are hotlines in the country that you can call. There are Psychiatrists in the country that you can trust to help you. You are not alone in this fight. You can get through this and remember to count all your blessings and love yourself. Life is beautiful and we have a God whom you can ALWAYS count on. Never give up!