Its the first week of January and all of us have contemplated the year ahead. We want change, real change that lasts. The change I made a few years ago has lasted, I weaned myself off my anti-depressants. I’ve been clean for 3 yrs 😉
I first started taking them when my firstborn was 4mths old and I was labelled with “post natal” depression. To read that story click here. I never intended to take them forever but seriously wondered when I’d ever feel ok enough without them. Jacob turned one and following that I fell pregnant again, I halved my tablets. I felt it. Anyone, no matter how great your going will feel the side effects of halving your medication. It generally took a few weeks before I adjusted to the new amount. My husband would groan when I told him I was cutting back cause it meant some rough days ahead, but he was my rock. The process was VERY slow, I weaned over a 12mth period approx. I wouldn’t of done it another way, it had to be slow. It took weeks to adjust to a lesser amount and then I’d leave it a few months to see how I was going before going less again.
Now this all seems simple, but how did I ACTUALLY do it, mentally, spiritually. I actually did a lot without seeking much “spiritual” help, I know, how dare I? So un Christian haha. Just being honest. You see I was managing quite well with one toddler, I finally got into the swing of being a mum of one. I was excited about being pregnant again (pregnancy is fun for me), I focused on my hypnobirth training. I remember thinking “wow” if I applied this same principle to the rest of my life challenges I’d completely renew my mind. That’s what hypnosis is, taking captive your thoughts, controlling your emotions. I couldn’t believe how much of it was biblical. There was lots of positive hopes flying around and I flew higher with the birth of my 2nd, I was so proud, not even a puff of gas needed.
It was easier the 2nd time around for me, but two is still more work than one. I mean you’ve doubled up, at least on a third child your not doubling up (except my friend who had twins 😉 So it was harder when I tried to go down to a 1/4 of a tablet. I distinctly remember every time I tried to get ready to go out I’d have Jacob running around like a lunatic and Beau crying continuously as I tried to make myself look presentable. I’d get furious and overwhelmed. The smallest things would tick me off and destroy the whole day. Beau not sleeping when he should, or waking up after 40mins even though I’d done everything “right” from day one with self settling. Then he was tired and he just cried and cried. I tried to do some uni, EPIC fail, pulled out, felt like shit, felt totally incapable.
Insert some spiritual help, please!
Fine then, I’ll go to a church. Typical person with problems, was on the edge of tears the entire time. Even if the sermon had been about tithes and offering I’m sure I would of been convinced it was speaking directly to my depression disaster.
I volunteered as a crèche helper, I had to pick something that my kids could come along to as well. I’m certainly not going to be a greeter at the door with two kids hanging off me. I joined the playgroup and met the most wonderful women, encouraging, faith filled. Thinking about them now, I miss them so much. None of us were perfect but the support and love was incredible. I’ll never forget them.
From going back to church, having a solid group of positive mums around me and the techniques I learnt in hypnobirthing, I remembered a foundational block laid in my earlier life. Words have power, thoughts have power. Don’t let your life be dictated by how you “feel” all the time.
If you’ve got a mind problem then you need to change what your feeding your mind. Just like you’d change what you fed your body if you were sick.
Change what your watching.
Change what your reading.
Change what your saying.
Change what your thinking.
Soon you will notice what your self talk is saying when your in the midst of life. What do you say when you preach to yourself?
The hardest thing to do when your sitting in the shower crying while the kids bang on the door is say something good. Or even more hard is to sing about how good God is. Its the last thing you want to do! You want to self indulge in misery. It seems easier to self destruct than save yourself. Saying something generic like “I love my life” is not very effective. Your spirit will respond very effectively to words filled with THE spirit. Gods spirit. Don’t roll your eyes, yes I’m talking about the bible! OR/ AND praise and worship, if you speak in tongues that is also very effective, you don’t even have to think about what your saying you can just let it out. These are your main sources of help (your weapons against darkness) they can set you free if you choose to use them, if you force yourself.
So kick your sorry butt out into the living room, throw your hands in the air, lay on the ground, or sit breastfeeding on the couch to silence the crying. Do whatever, but youtube whatever you can find in uplifting praise and worship and feed on it. Saying the words are even more powerful because your really defying your dark thoughts. If you cant do it then just listen, close your eyes, your soul will still hear it.
I am the worst daily devotion Christian ever, I pretty much never do them, please don’t abandon me here. I forced myself to do them at this time and always turn to them in times of despair. Cause I know they work. I forced myself to pick up the bible, open it, read something, anything! Then pray, about anything, even try praying more about others than yourself. Shift your focus, even in the depths of hopelessness you have something to offer others. A kind word, a meal, a helping hand, a prayer. Your devotion may take less than 10mins, but it can be more powerful than a pill a day.
And so with all the ups and downs, I hung on, and I threw the last box of meds n the bin. Done.
Was mental health a thing of the past for me, no. But I had the tools to maintain it and improve it that didn’t come from inside a packet. It came from inside the spirit God gave me. There are many ways to “Keep Calm and Carry On”. Eat well, take time out for yourself, yoga, meditation of any sort, being out in nature, self help groups etc And of course these work too, I do many of them. But I believe in God and I believe incorporating him into your spiritual healing is hugely essential so I’m focusing on what I believe are…
The TOP Three Weapons against Darkness
- Praise and worship everyday
- Do devotions EVERYDAY
- Focus on others instead of yourself
I easily slip back into my old ways, like in the last 12mths I haven’t done the main two. And I felt like marching back into the doctors, to hell with it all! This post is as much for me as it may be for you. Why is it when things get good we often ditch the good habits that got us there?
I have kept my life so simple these past 6yrs. I have not been employed even one day, no study done, no entrepreneur mummy business. Just mum. If I have to keep it this simple for another 6yrs than so be it, I have to respect my limits. But I have dreams in my heart as you also do. And I will try to step out of my “safe” zone into new challenges. I’ve failed many times and I don’t know when one will work out. But one day I’ll start something and I’ll be able to follow it through and I’ll finish. I’ll know then that that was the one God always intended for me. God says you and I are able even with our weaknesses.
Love to you all my sisters!
Even survived to have a third! I must be crazy 😉
Disclaimer: These views are from my personal experiences, and should not be viewed as medical advice. Mental illness should always be taken seriously, consult your doctor about any change you want to make.