Friday, August 21, 2009

Growing, maturing, living life to the fullest...

This summer has been full of growth and learning to love who I am. Perfect? No. I am very far from it. Could I use improvement? Yes, I am definitely sure in some areas I could use a lot of work and improvement. I have struggled some with depression this summer. I am trying to figure out what triggers the sadness, anger and withdrawal from others. I have realized that it's times when I need people the most, I turn in to myself and try to avoid fellowship. I don't want others to see that I am down or depressed. I feel ashamed and like I am less of a person when I am feeling down.

A friend from church called this morning and called me out on a comment I made. Can I tell you how absolutely I am amazed by the things God does in our lives? I have struggled with this depression thing off and on for years. God has placed this family in our church(our lives) that understand and have been through the exact same things I have been through. We joined the same life group they were part of and all of us get along great. I have been praying for another couple to come along that Ernie and I both get along with. It's great and dandy to have other mom friends, but it's been a long time since we were really close to another family. He has dealt with clinical depression and doesn't just sympathize, but can honestly say "I've been there and am just a little farther down the road than you". Not only can he say he's been there and understands, but he says it's our job as the body of Christ to help other people that are struggling with things we have struggled with. I realized a few weeks ago that God doesn't give us depression, but He allows us to struggle with it, so that we can help others. It is through our struggles when we grow the most.

This new friendship and reading the book Boundaries has really opened my eyes. Boundaries talks a lot about having safe relationships where you can try out saying no and exercising boundaries, so that you'll be able to use them with other people. I have always thought my problem was being a people pleaser, but maybe it's more that I don't know how to use boundaries with other people. Maybe it's a little of both. I have always wanted everyone to like me. Many times in life I've done things I don't want to do in order to just be with the other person and keep harmony. Interesting stuff.

So, in this conversation this morning our friend told me that he believes that I have much more inside of me that I am stifling and not allowing to escape(my words, not his). I don't remember the exact words. He said that online I'm a totally different person than in person. Hmmm.

This song started playing in my head when he said that. I do believe that I am a lot more outgoing when I'm hiding behind a computer screen. Rejection from someone online is much easier to deal with than someone in person. Right after we got off of the phone I checked Twitter and this was one of the first tweets I read... "You have everything you need to live the life you desire, if you will take the actions necessary to fulfill your possibilities." - Ralph Marston. What a timely quote to read today. Perhaps God is trying to tell me something. I know I'm not living my life to the fullest. As I've listened to Family Church's messages about One Month to Live this week, I've realized that. I need to stop living in fear and embrace all of the wonderful possibilities that are out there!


Michele said...

Sending a big cyber hug your way. I can definitely relate to being a people pleaser and needing to set boundaries. My sister has struggled with depression for a long time, and just being a witness to the hell on earth this has put her through, makes my heart hurt for you.

Our pastor has been doing a sermon series on contentment out of Phil 4. One thing he preached on last week was giving of yourself to be content. If you need encouragement. . . then encourage someone else. If you need a hug. . . hug someone else. Get the picture? I don't know if this will help in anyway. . . but I suggested this to my sister this week, and she agreed that during the times when she is giving of herself to others she does feel better.

So maybe when you are in a "funk" and feel the need to withdraw . . . maybe this is when you should call a friend and say, "Let's go have lunch together." Actually force yourself to do the very thing you want to withdrawn from . . . does that make sense?

I will be praying for you.

Kim said...

That is great post! No wonder you like my last post! haha! That is why I blog - to let it all out!

Sherri said...

This is such a great, honest post. I love who you are online and in person. It is easier to put yourself out there online and, while some may say that isn't the real you, I think it is more you than you may show anywhere else. I have online friends that I have never and may never meet...I call them my heart friends because our friendships are based completely on what's in our hearts. So many people deal with depression in secret...ashamed and confused by it....I have also been there. I think MANY women deal with it!!! Once again, I love this post!

Jaye @ said...

Terrific post, I admire your honesty..