I fight the stronghold of depression everyday. Yes, I realize just how blessed I am and I know that God is working in His own way, but I often can’t shake the feeling of wanting to in my own bubble.
I can’t speak on how depression affects other people but for me, it’s like a feeling of isolation that slowly creeps over me, calling me away from those who care most about me. When depression creeps in, I just want to be alone. I want to retreat to my bed and focus on something, anything, other than what is currently going on in my life. Depression has exhibited itself in many forms throughout my life but thoughts of isolation became the most common symptom.
When I was in The Dark Place (the name that I gave my 4 months of hiding and isolation in 2016), my fear of interaction kept me bound to my bed. Now all I feel is my desire to be in silence, luring me towards solitude.
I feel the difference between last year and now. Last year I didn’t want to engage with people. I was overcome with so much hopelessness, despair, and anxiety that the thought of going out into the world literally paralyzed me. Right now I am all for going out and engaging with others….but when I am home, I just want to be alone.
The world is loud- very loud- and filled with so many emotions. As an empath, I absorb the emotions and feelings of those around me. While I love the connection, taking on the feelings and emotions of my loved ones wears on me over time. It didn’t affect me that much when I was younger, but now that I’m in my 30s, I often become emotionally drained because of the emotions of others. Retreating to my bubble allows me to step away from the feelings of others and focus on M.E.
I can literally feel the enemy attempting to convert my desire to be alone into something much worse. The enemy wants to kill, steal, and destroy- he wants me to be miserable like I was last year. But I’m not here for that this time.
What I don’t want is for someone to read this and think that I suffering and in a negative place. Truth is, I am doing well but I have a newfound appreciation for silence and solitude. I have learned the true definition of “Joy” and experienced peace in God’s plan- and I’m not parting with that for anything!
In this quiet time, I hear God a little bit better and I am able to read and write with no interruptions. I allow the sound of the air conditioner pushing cool air through the condo and the sound of the refrigerator humming to transport me to either the setting of the book I’m reading or the beach that I drift to when I write. Without a doubt, silence is my happy place.
So why blog about it? Good question!
First, I come from a big and loud family. They tend to take my desire for silence and solitude personally, as if it is offensive to them. I want to let them know that it’s not about them- it is truly about me! When I am alone, I am able to recharge and regroup. Just like a cell phone battery recharges best when left alone on a charger, my strength comes back from me being alone.
Second, I’m praying that someone who reads this will sneak off and find their own quiet place in order to find themselves. With all the craziness that exists in the world, we each need to find a quiet and calm way to come back to 100%,
I have never felt stronger than I do when I come out of some alone time… and that’s probably because I hear God so well when my life quiets down. While there is physically no one around, I know that God is there. The sound of silence is God’s voice. He comforts me and speaks to my heart. And I love it!
Today I challenge you to find your quiet place and recharge. Whether your recharging involves reading, writing, mediation, or prayer to God- slip away for some time and reconnect with yourself. We are better able to handle the issues of our lives when we are recharged and at our best.