Honest and transparent about a thief

Beauty Begins with Biscotti: When depression strikes
Our Fall Break is almost over, and at least one out of four of us was able to make it to Fall Charge, our church's annual youth retreat. Dylan has strep throat and is still not feeling well. He's been running a fever since Tuesday, received antibiotics on Thursday, and is currently sleeping. The doctor did tell us that it would be a few more days until he fully recovered. I'm just grateful that he only had to miss one day of school from this since high school requires a stricter attendance policy, let alone the amount of work covered each day. 

While he's napping, I thought I share my experience with depression with you. My reasons for sharing this very personal time in my life are to bring awareness to the condition and to encourage you or someone you know dealing with depression. 
Beauty Begins with Biscotti: what depression feels like
I began confronting this issue in my early thirties. I found myself with two adorable and precious preschool boys, a handsome, intelligent, and dedicated husband, surrounded by family, immersed in church, and working part-time. What in the world did I have to be sad, or even depressed, about? 

It was really hard to tell my doctor that I needed help, but it was quite easy for him to see that I did. Before I could finish explaining why I was there, I burst into tears, immediately apologizing for crying, since I didn't even know why I was boo-hooing or what was wrong with me. 

My eyes were too swollen to see him grab his clipboard, but he proceeded to ask me some questions, which I answered all yes.

Are you persistently sad or anxious?
Do you have feelings of hopelessness?
Do you have feelings of guilt or worthlessness?
Have you felt fatigued or a decrease in energy?
Do you have difficulty concentrating, remembering details, or making decisions?
Do you have aches, pains, headaches, cramps, or digestive problems?

I was beginning to wonder if he could read my mind by the end of the list. That described me very well. 
Beauty Begins with Biscotti: Depression can feel like you're drowning
He then asked me other questions, which were not true for me, but they can indicate a problem.

Do you experience irritability or restlessness?
Have you lost interest in activities or hobbies?
Do you experience insomnia or excessive sleeping?
Are you overeating or have a loss in appetite?
Do you have thoughts of suicide? 

I told him that I was tired all the time, I knew I should feel happy, but I just can't be, I feel like I'm going through life in a fog, and felt like I had to fake everything. After checking my iron levels, he prescribed Zoloft, and later I changed to Lexapro. 

There is no way I could have ever told you this while going through depression. It is a disease that will rob you of your life, if you let it. 

After telling my doctor, I began telling a few ladies in my small group at church, and boy, was I surprised when a couple of them told me that they felt the same way at one time, and how much medicine helped. I then began talking openly about it in my church group, and then my mom's group. I never got over the shock of hearing woman after woman tell me they experienced similar issues with depression. 
Beauty Begins with Biscotti: Dupont State Park
Through a combination of medication, counseling, and reading scripture, I was able to develop strategies for dealing with this problem. I can now praise the Lord for the ability to enjoy life to its fullest.

If you are experiencing symptoms of depression, do not keep it a secret. Tell your spouse or a trusted friend, tell your doctor, and tell God. If you know someone that may be experiencing depression, encourage them to talk about their feelings and see a medical doctor. 

It's scary to write a blog post this personal and honestly, it's hard to be this transparent. But, depression will steal your joy, and maybe, even your life. Know for a fact that Jesus came to Earth so that you may have life, and that you may experience life abundantly. 

Dylan is waking up, so I need to take his temperature again and get him some water. Thanks for hanging out with me today. I'm praying that your natural beauty will outshine any depression in your life. 


  1. Thank you for sharing. I have been there as well.
    Love from Sumter

    1. Julie, thanks for your honesty. It's time we start uplifting each other up through our unique experiences.


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