It was exactly 1 year ago today I posted this blog post on my old blog. In honor of Depression Awareness this week I wanted to share it with you again…
“Depression” … Just saying that word makes me depressed ha! It was about 1.5 years ago that I was told I was most likely suffering from depression. To be quite honest, I didn’t take the news very well at all. I was in complete denial. There was NO WAY that the positive-happy-go-lucky girl I had come to know so well had disappeared in a state of depression! I knew something was not right but accepting I was depressed was not an option. After all, that would mean I was in a state of weakness and well I was not prepared to be weak!
So for a while, I continously beat myself up for suffering the symptoms of depression. When I couldn’t get myself out of bed, the self-sabotaging thoughts would creep in … “I’m lazy. He’s right. I’m not a good housewife. I’m not a good coach. What’s the point in even getting of bed? I’m just going to go back to sleep.” This was my daily routine for a long time. To be honest, the only thing that got me out of bed in the end, was when Sandy looked at me with those big puppy dog eyes. I know he was probably just looking at me to be fed or for his daily walk, but I like to think he was also deliberately trying to help me.
Talking to a therapist available through the Marine Corp Family Services helped me come to realize that the possiblity of depression was not so crazy after all. After reading more about it and working through a workbook I was given, I realized this was exactly why I was struggling. I was trapped in my own mind and there was no way I could get better until I fully understood why I was in that state and accepted that the only way I could get better was to put myself first and change the things I could change.
As someone who likes to fix things, I found it difficult to be selfish enough to put myself first. I still wanted to help my ex-husband through his own struggles and help others lose weight, but I realized how can I even begin to help anyone else if I’m not taking care of myself first. Being in a state of depression is seriously debilitating. Finding the energy to just have a shower felt like such a chore and effort, so accepting that I could no longer give myself to others without guilt until I gave myself some much needed TLC was crucial for my own healing.
Having a therapist, especially when I isolated myself from family and friends, was seriously a life saving help. She really helped me process all the negative thoughts and she challenged me to push me in the right direction. On top of that, I started a course of anti-depressants that surprisingly helped me A LOT. There are so many people who give anti-depressants a bad rap, and yes for those who abuse them or simply haven’t found the right type, then I can understand why they would tell you it’s a bad idea… but honestly if it were not for the anti-depressants then i’m not sure I would have had the courage to walk away from the toxicity of my marriage. At the end of the day, depression is a chemical imbalance in the brain, so if you think about it, a course of medication to help balance things again doesn’t sound so crazy after all. Of course, I am not telling everyone to go out and start a course of anti-depressants, but if you’ve been told by a professional that you might benefit from a course, then you might want to look into it because it seriously helped me.
Anyway, I guess my blog post today was just to give you an insight into how I “escaped” my state of depression as i’ve had a lot of messages from people who share the same struggles. It’s been a really slow journey, and by no means do I advocate that anti-depressants will solve everyone’s problems. They were just the little boost I personally benefited from to help me find the courage, energy and positivty to change the things I could change. Eating clean, moving my body every day, surrounding myself with positive people is still my number one long-term treatment plan.
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