The Great Divide
In many ways, depression is a disease of disconnect. Stress at the speed of life drives you to recharge your batteries, to rest and refuel. Creating a temporary divide to reenergize is a natural and healthy reaction.
Unplugging for a time of solitude and separating for personal wellness are helpful, even required, over short periods to help you bounce back into the world.
When Does Disconnect Become Disease?
When you lose the want and will to interact, meet with family and friends, maintain key relationships, and let go of life, disconnect becomes disease.
Depression came as a imperceptible slide into isolation this time. It’s different with each relapse. It’s also hit me harder than a fast moving freight train.
Simple excuses of being tired from a hectic work schedule snowballed into active avoidance. Over time, I disconnected from all sources of joy and stability: Family, friends, and faith.
All the people and activities which formerly fueled me became impossible labors for which I no longer had interest nor strength. I’ve disconnected from everyone and everything – even myself.
Shame and guilt are my constant companions. Anger and irritability for my behavior, what I have done or left undone, and whom I believe I’ve become – this is the stuff of which days are made.
The Seducer enters. Self-medication through a self-destructive lifestyle, any relief is a temporary gift. The pain has to go somewhere.
Ultimately, depression carved me out of life and the life out of me.
An Antidote: Community
Fortunately, there’s a way back. An uphill climb in an arid desert may be the path home, but I must take the steps to close the gap separating me from everything that’s worthwhile. I must rejoin life.
Community is one antidote to this disease. I must:
- Stay connected with family and friends. A simple call to say hi or a text to let them know I’m thinking about them.
- Refuse to listen to the Liar. I can do this.
- Maintain mutual accountability with SW on our different but similar roads to wellness. Talking and accountability are great therapy.
- Be open and honest with myself and others.
- Focus on others and how I can help change my little piece of the world. Volunteer. Engage. Listen. Get out of my own head.
- Heal my soul through active faith and service lived authentically in a community of others.
- Embrace yes.
Community and connectedness are my nourishment on the dry journey through this season of sand.
That’s enough for tonight. Tomorrow’s another light.
From one sojourner to another, all the best…