Little did I know, February 2019 would be a time where I would experience depression. Thank God it was what my doctor said "mild" and was a side effect to a medication that I was taking and will soon go out of my system once I stop taking the medication.
From my limited knowledge about depression, I thought that depression usually start from a tough period such as a bad break-up or the loss of a job, and massive life style change etc... but now learned that it can develop from other factors such as genetics or chemical imbalances that occur in the brain.. and that's why depression can affect anyone at any time, regardless of what's going on in their life.
In my case, it was a side-effect of a medication that I was taking.
During the times I was depressed (Didn't know it was depression at the time) I was easily agitated and easily got upset or angry over things that would normally not bother me. I had very negative thoughts about myself and others. I felt like no one cared about me and that all of the work that I was doing in this world is not really making any difference. I didn't have motivation or inspiration to do anything. I wanted to be alone and didn't want to talk to anyone. My self talk was horrible. I felt insecure, I had no appetite, I didn't sleep well and on top of it all, was gaining weight. (Another side effect of the medication I was taking)
And so with all of these changes in the way that I was thinking, my attitude and my weight, I started to worry and question what was going on! Because I felt it was a totally different person! It was out of character.
I'm so thankful that I was able to notice these changes as soon as I can and went to the doctor straight away. To make my long story short, we found out it was a side-effect to a medication that I was taking and after about a week or so of not taking the medication anymore, slowly, day by day I was starting to feel like my old self again. The fun, bubbly, driven, excited and inspired Fideliz. Praise God!
I know everyone is different and would have very different experiences about depression and so please know as I write this, this is only based on my experience and what helped me overcome this season in my life. I share it because I want to be able to help others who might be going through similar experiences or have friends that might be going through this experience as well.
So here's what got me through...
1) SELF AWARENESS & DISCERNMENT
At times when I was feeling really low and didn't want to talk to anyone, I thought it might just be me wanting to have a rest and maybe need some time for myself. I thought maybe I was just tired and needed to sleep it off... But then after awhile I discerned that I wasn't wanting to get out of bed anymore and I had no desire to create or do anything that used to excite me. It was as if I was a whole new different person and I started to wonder what was happening.
I think when you're self aware and know yourself well, you're then able to discern and say that what you might be doing at the time really is NOT something you would normally do. Self awareness means - conscious knowledge of ones own character and feelings. I believe having a strong inner support system like self awareness and knowing who you are, really helps you detect those things that aren't aligned with who you really are.
I found that being aware of who I am - most importantly who I am in Christ, I was able to discern when those negative thoughts came to mind. It was definitely not me. Kingdom Affirmations are really important to me and so once I had negative thoughts that I knew was not aligned with who God said I was, this was what set those alarm bells for me and straight away went to get help and saw my doctor.
Going to my doctor straight away really helped cut down the "depression side-effect" and meant I got help and support that I needed right away.
* Self awareness is a continuous thing. We constantly learn more about ourselves everyday. So take the time to do so, by journaling, devotion time with God and reminding yourself daily of your Kingdom Identity - Who you are in Christ.
* If you think some thing's not quite right, your mood, you emotions... when you feel sadness so severe that it interferes with your daily life and causes symptoms such as loss of appetite, sleeping issues, loss of concentration and/or low energy levels. If any of these symptoms last longer than two weeks, there's probably something more serious going on than just feeling sad. Please get help right away.
2) STRONG SUPPORT SYSTEM
As soon as I found out what I was going through, I then decided to share it with a small handful of my close family and friends. My strong support system. The people who I can go to without judgement, the ones I know that I can rely on and I also know that they love me & care for me.
(made some time to talk about what I was going though with my friend and wise spiritual mentor,
- my mom - coffee dates were great! )
Because of this they were able to pray with me and for me, I was able to also take some time off my usual busy schedule and they were there to help me continue to somehow run my communities and businesses as I was going though this process. I'm super grateful for their love and patience - You will certainly know who your close and true friends are during tough times!
It's important to have a strong support system, a community, a family that you know will be there for you through times like these.
3) EVERYTHING IS TEMPORARY & LIFE HAPPENS IN SEASONS
One of the things that helped me through the feeling of depression was remembering that this thing I was going through was not permanent. It is only temporary and after sometime, I will be able to get through it. (It didn't feel this easy though during those times - I was very negative)
There were times I was very negative that I wanted to quit my coaching business and stop everything that I was doing. But praise God, What kept ringing in my ear was that: "This is only for a season" and "not to make any permanent decisions in temporary situations"
No matter what you're going through in life, depression or other.... remember that it is only for a season and you WILL get through it.
(Made some space to take care of me. This is me with no make up, still have some acne on my chin, but slowly going away, also now loosing the weight and now well rested. I made space to attend Holy Yoga, meet close friends for coffee and intimate chats that really helped me through this season)
4) FAITH & GRATITUDE
And so that leads me to my last point. In the times when I was feeling real low, I really held on to God's promises for my life. As much as I had so many internal battles, and times when I wanted to give up, I just kept trusting that God has a reason and a lesson for me in this season. (And maybe that was sharing these here on my blog) and experiencing it so I can help more people who might also be going through the same thing.
I praise God it didn't get to the point where it got worse and that it was detected straight away. I'm now back to being my old crazy, bubbly, driven and inspired self... the one that jumps out of bed with crazy ideas and excitement in her eyes, ready to create, and inspire others to be the best that they can be and to live out their lives to the fullest.
If you're going through something similar, or know a friend that is experiencing something like this, keep your faith, and know that it's a process. It will take some time, but day by day, if you just continue to have faith you will see progress and soon I know you will get there.
Again, I'm sharing this to help others who might be going through the same experience, and to share what helped me get through it - from my personal experience. The layers of depression vary from person to person, so what worked for me may not work for someone else. However, the most important thing to do is to acknowledge depression and not live in denial of it. Get help and talk to someone.
I pray that I'm able to help others through this blog and by sharing my stories. I'm super grateful that I have the opportunity to share my stories and experience through this platform and I pray that they're a blessing to you and continue to inspire you to live your best life each day.
We all go through tough times in our lives, but know that God is always there for you, He will not give you anything you can not overcome. With God’s help, we can overcome even the worst of what life throws at us.
“I have told you these things, so that in me you may have peace. In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world.” -John 16:33
Love and Blessings, Fideliz x