OK, so maybe not exactly one hundred reasons. However, I hope my title got the attention of Google because this one may be my most emerging blog post to date. Perhaps even, in WordPress Speak, my cornerstone post. A lack of enthusiasm during the holidays can cause your blues to manifest.
Hi. My name is Jackie and I suffer from mental health issues, specifically, major depressive disorder (MDD). I had been able to hide my true feelings for many years however recently, it became very evident to me that I need help. I could no longer hide behind a fake smile. The energy taken to put on the appearance of having everything together was exhausting to the point where I felt trapped inside my body.
How it Feels to be Trapped in Your Own Body
Please keep in mind that I am not a professional psychiatrist nor did I sleep in a Holiday Inn Express last night. But with this disclaimer in place, the best way I can explain how it feels to be trapped in my own body is isolation. Or to put it more bluntly, the physical act of being isolated. And when I have these feelings, it is overwhelming and encompasses not just my mental capacities but my physical ones as well. There is a weight put upon me which cannot be explained except that it is very heavy.
Now imagine being told by someone that the only way to avoid the pain of mental health, metaphorically speaking, was to just pick up the ball and run with it. In other words, just get over it, your problem is not real.
Picking up the Ball
Looking around, you find yourself on a large football field with an innumerable amount of balls of all different shapes, sizes, and colors. Again, the only thing you know for certain is that you must pick up the ball and run in order to avoid the pain. But which ball? And in which direction should you run? Oh, and by the way, there are no lights so you are in complete and total darkness — isolated.
This is what it feels like to be trapped inside your own body.
Dealing with the Misconception of Others
Let’s look a little deeper. Let’s suppose that you have an obvious and visible physical ailment. How would you feel if someone said one of these to you?
- Just get over it.
- Suck it up, buttercup.
- You are just a fraud — a fake.
The sentiment behind being told just “pick up the ball and run with it”, can be detrimental to someone with mental health disorders. It would be like telling a double-leg amputee to “just get up and walk”. A normal and rational human would never say that to a handicapped person. Perhaps since depression is mostly hidden from view, people without it either cannot relate or simply chose to ignore the subtle signs.
To the people who do not know me well, I suspect I sometimes come across as an extrovert. The life of the party; the jokester. But to those who know me intimately, the ones who see me for who I truly am, know that I have and continue to lead a troubled life. I ask for your prayers and I ask for your continued support of my blog. Please consider sharing my blog with your family and friends this holiday season. My prayer is that someone, somewhere, might be helped or get a blessing from my ramblings.
If you made it this far, please consider commenting below, subscribing, and also sharing on your social media sites. Most importantly, I ask for your prayers. I write this weekly blog as an outlet in my fight against depression. However, my hope is that something I write here may help others who may be struggling. If you would like to help with my battle against depression, check out my online Etsy store. Most proceeds are donated to the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention.
If you or someone you know may be contemplating suicide, call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-8255 or by dialing 988. You may also text HOME to 741741 to reach the Crisis Text Line. In emergencies, call 911, or seek care from a local hospital or mental health provider.
Scripture quotations marked HCSB are taken from the Holman Christian Standard Bible®, Used by Permission HCSB ©1999,2000,2002,2003,2009 Holman Bible Publishers. Holman Christian Standard Bible®, Holman CSB®, and HCSB® are federally registered trademarks of Holman Bible Publishers.