The Depression: part 2

AGAIN!!!  Why did I wake up?

Every night I would secretly hope that I would just die in my sleep and wake up in heaven!  I didn’t see the point in my existence anymore, life was meaningless.  “Jesus, God, Holy Spirit, why am I still here?  What purpose could you possibly have for me, that you keep forcing me to wake up for ANOTHER pointless day?”  Just another day to get up, go to work, come home, go to bed, day after day, after week, month, year blah blah blah.  I’d had enough!!  Is this all life was about?  Working to pay for bills, spending most of my days working, having a few weeks off a year to escape the meaningless reality of life in another country, for as long as I could possibly afford and then drag myself back to the slavery that I was captive in…there must be more to life than this???

It was as if I had been asleep, a sleep walking zombie, unaware of my sleeping state, but every once in a while I would be rudely awakened by some painful experience beyond my control.  It would force me to self reflect and look at my wounds, but the pain was overwhelmingly unbearable to REALLY feel.   One of my coping mechanisms, was to stuff my pain along with myself, deep down beneath the fully reinforced impenetrable defence mechanisms, that I had created to ‘feel safe.’  I even managed to fool myself most of the time that I was ‘fine’!  I was lying though, my soul was sick, my defences were malfunctioning left right and centre and I didn’t know how to fix it.
I started to search the Internet for answers – Google became my best friend!  I realized that others were searching also, this offered some comfort actually, but I honestly still felt so lost.  I had been in church for about 8 years already, serving, tithing, and faithfully turning up week after week.  Was I doing something wrong?  Why was I so miserable?  Why did I feel so empty?  Maybe there was something more I needed to ‘do.’

It seemed no one I came across had the answers I needed, maybe I wasn’t looking in the right places, but finally I made a decision, that I needed to make a decision, to make some changes.  I have been in the personal development industry for 9 years and at the time I was mentoring and counselling young people in schools across South London.  Therefore clinical supervision was something the company provided for us to review our workload, work through any issues we were experiencing and any personal development needs we had.  Fortunately I had a good relationship with my supervisor and I felt safe enough to share with her how unhappy I was.  She recommended the book ‘Being Happy’ by Andrew Matthews for me to read, which she felt would point me in the right direction, so this was also a good starting point.   This among other books gave me glimmers of hope and pearls of wisdom, which I put into practice, but I kept getting stuck and still could not figure out what was wrong with me!

For as long as I can remember, I’ve always been someone who would look out for others and help others to progress.  In my spare time I was busy volunteering and at work I was busy fixing other peoples lives, so I rarely had time to think about what I needed and do anything about it, I was mostly fire fighting!

In the autumn of 2008 I noticed the heaviness taking its toll on me.  I started to cry at random times, my temper was out of control, I struggled to sleep and everything was a chore.  This was during what was the most exciting times of my life.  I had just co-written and produced a large scale youth musical for my church, which was an amazing success – but I was absolutely miserable and inside I felt like a disgusting rotten corpse!

After the musical, I was at a loss as to what to do with myself.  My life felt stale and I just felt like I needed something more.  I remember talking through some ideas I had with my mum, one of them being my long-term desire to train as a counsellor.  My mum encouraged me to submit my application and she sat with me while I completed it, and we went together to take my passport photos to send off with the application (sadly my mother is no longer here, so this is a fond memory for me as I write this).  It was not long before I found out that my application was successful and that I was accepted onto the course.  My life was taking a new turn and I was so excited about my journey ahead…

Look out for pat 3 coming soon..

Xxx

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