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When Depression Tries to Make You Believe Lies About Who You Are

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As I sit alone in my room with tear filled eyes, I keep having to tell myself over and over again I am not my illness. That depression does not define me. That this too shall pass, even though, in this moment, it does not feel that way.

I’m exhausted, but I can’t sleep. I want to get out of bed, but I don’t have enough motivation to do so. I want to spend time with friends, but I also don’t want to do anything. You see, depression is like you’re being held underwater and you so desperately want to take a breath of fresh air. But only half of you is fighting because you are fighting a battle against yourself. You have the healthy half of you fighting so hard to breathe and then there’s the other half that isn’t doing anything. It could care less, because that’s what depression does to you. It drains you, it makes you unmotivated, it suffocates you. It’s like it completely changes who you are, yet tries to make you believe this is you. And at the same time, you are expected to pretend everything is OK, have a smile on your face and act like you can breathe perfectly fine.

Listen, please don’t let the illness win. Don’t believe the lies. Depression will tell you you’re unworthy, incapable, unlovable and that you will never get better. I wish I could make you realize how untrue these statements are. You are worthy, capable, lovable and you will get better. I know how real your thoughts and emotions are, but I want to tell you hope is just as real. And as much struggle depression has caused in my life, I would not trade it for anything else. I’ve grown and learned so much from my painful situations. I’ve been able to help and relate to others going through the same thing and it’s allowed me to realize my passion for mental health.

I believe Jesus, a God of hope, has definitely been the main one who has gotten me through my depression. Not only does scripture tell us he has a plan for our lives, it also tells us he promises his plan will prosper us, give us hope and a future. So I’m holding on to his promise. It’s all about perspective. It’s a battle, but I want it to be a battle I’m always winning. I don’t want it to defeat me and it doesn’t have to defeat you either. Depression isn’t pretty, but I am grateful for everything it has taught me. You will get through this. You are not alone. Keep fighting, because you are loved and needed.

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Originally published: January 12, 2017
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