A Woman's Voice


I’M NOT PERFECT AND IT’S OKAY~ Thirteen Steps to a Happier Self ~ Chapter One (continued) ~ July 23, 2011 by Dolores Ayotte

…continued from yesterday

CHAPTER ONE ~ The Greatest Of These Is LOVE

I feel the need to say that depression feels very different from other physical ailments, at least from my personal point of view. It is generally not well received, and not all people have empathy with the condition.Several people think that you can just “snap out of it,” and this only adds to the frustration of trying to live with it. In my instance, it felt that I was somehow responsible for my depressed state. Perhaps it happens and I am unaware of it, but I can’t image anyone suggesting that a person suffering from diabetes, cancer, or some other life altering illness “snap out” of what they are going through.

Getting angry and frustrated with a depressed person only further aggravates and exacerbates the condition. He/she is having enough trouble trying to cope with life as it is. I am not trying to criticize, condemn, or complain. This is not my goal, nor has it ever have been. I only want to share because I care. I am not looking for pity for such a crippling condition but rather for compassion for all those who suffer in silence. I am also seeking compassion for those who live with a depressed person and, last but not least, compassion for those who have added to the crippling effect of the condition by their innocence or their ignorance. My silence no longer feels golden. It is time to find the courage to share my healing circle with my family, my friends, and all of you who choose to embrace what I have written.

During a depressed state, you feel very alone  and isolated. As stated above, in most instances you will not find the compassion you might get when experiencing other illnesses. You, therefore, might try to cover up what you are experiencing, and you may become further depressed. As a result, you may feel even more isolated in this downward spiral until you reach the point when you can hardly get up in the morning to start your day. You can lose your zest for life, your sense of humor, and joy for the little things that once enhanced your life and brought you so much pleasure.

A bout with major depression is like living in a black pit. Each day you have to work very hard at climbing out of it in order to see the light of dawn. It is at this time, when you may feel the need draw from a Higher Power to give you the strength and courage to face each new day. I found that without my faith there would have been very little hope to ever rise above the depressed state, not only faith in God but learning to have a renewed faith in myself. This is the hardest task because a depressed person has usually lost faith and trust in himself/herself. It is almost impossible to draw strength from a well that has run so dry. Eventually, by taking small steps and being satisfied with small gains, you can make some deposits into this dry well. Due to the fact that there is so little left to draw from, the only choice you actually have is to try to replenish it so you can make your way back to a full and rewarding life.

I must admit that this was the most difficult period of my life thus far. I had left my teaching career in order to recuperate, and I could not get the courage to return. It felt like I had failed miserably. I felt so lost. I then decided that in order to continue pursuing work outside our home, I would have to make some major decisions about what I was going to do in this regard. I had to learn how to think outside the box.

I came to realize that I didn’t need a classroom to teach. Classrooms have walls, but teaching doesn’t only need to take place inside those walls. I decided to change careers, and I got hired by a major financial institution. I soon discovered that before I could teach again, I had to be a student and learn totally new information. It took some time, and it was no easy task.

To be continued…

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2 Responses to 'I’M NOT PERFECT AND IT’S OKAY~ Thirteen Steps to a Happier Self ~ Chapter One (continued) ~ July 23, 2011 by Dolores Ayotte'

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  1. raisethegaze said,

    Dolores, this is a very helpful series. Your passion and commitment to help other depression sufferers and the people in their lives are very evident and commendable. It is informative and instructional.
    Thank you.


    • Thank you Peter,
      Once again I want to say how much I appreciate your support and encouragement. You are spot on. My goal has always been to help others, not only depression sufferers, but all those who need a positive boost now and then. The basis of my book embraces this deisre. It is what I consider to be a “feel good” book. Several people have used this term to describe what I have written and in the end, this has been my goal. My hope is to inspire others to develop a closer relationship with God and feel more at peace with themselves and others. Blessings Peter.


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