Did you know I’m one of the bloggers over at Christians Read? Vicki Hinze, Maureen Lang, Elizabeth Goddard, James L. Rubart, Hannah Alexander, Kathi Macias, Lynette Sowell, Sarah Goebel, Kristen Heitzmann and Yvonne Lehman are part of the Christians Read team. I blog opposite Maureen on Wednesdays.
This week I shared what I found to be true for me in writing while I was moving.
Can you relate?
Read on to find out.
I’m going back to unpack more boxes.
This week was my turn to blog at Christians Read and I thought I’d share my observations about the Ice Bucket Challenge for ALS.
The response has been positive against all the comments and negativity I’ve seen regarding the challenge.
I’d love for you to take a look and share your thoughts.
I was stunned to open my Facebook feed and find it full of tributes to Robin Williams. I knew he wasn’t even 65, so I wondered if it was his heart. I was devastated to read and now know it was a suicide.
His family shared that he had been struggling with deep depression. His own confessions regarded his addictions. I love to read biographies and such and most of the great comedians had ravaging inner pain. Many medicate with alcohol or drugs. All in that category used humor, and we found it entertaining.
I suspect his death is especially hard because his talents knew no bounds. Hysterical stand-up. Oscar winning drama. Laugh out loud interviews he hijacked. Touching tributes to causes and people like St. Jude’s. TV. Movies. I can’t think of another person like him, not before, not up-and-coming.
Now my Facebook feed is full of posts, articles, updates and comments regarding depression, suicide, God’s word, eternity. I don’t think any of these help his family. I pray something does. I can’t imagine the torment of anyone left behind after a suicide.
My hope is that through my small experience with depression someone might get a glimpse of what it is like. It took decades for me to realize I had hormonal imbalance. I suffered with severe PCOS, so I’m not sure if the two were related. But when I was in a certain time of the month I could feel a change and it was as ominous as a dark cloud and still night in the midwest. Nothing would be wrong otherwise and a thick veil of darkness consumed me. I was rocked with shame, for what, I don’t know. But it perpetuated knowing people needed me. The physical drain, almost like a vaccuum suck somehow took all energy and joy out of me left it impossible to manage the easiest of tasks. It wasn’t that I didn’t want to. I simply could not. Like I said, it was absolutely consuming.
This would hit hard for twenty minutes straight. That doesn’t seem like a lot, but I’ll be real here. It was such an intense darkness that I can think of many times I got a suitcase out and started to pack. I thought if I ran somewhere, anywhere, my family would be free of what my torment delayed them in having.
Three times I can recall walking to the medicine cabinet. I picked up pills and stared. I knew what I was contemplating but I was that void of hope and that full of desperation. And yes, this was as a Christian, and a strong one at that.
I longed for someone to bust in the door when I’d hide and tell me I was worth it. Who would hold me and let me cry or ooze the darkness out in whatever way. No one did. For those closest to me, they admitted they didn’t know what to do. They thought I wanted to be alone. I felt like I had no choice.
My story has a happy ending, and it is only by the grace of God. I finally broke down and confessed everything to my doctor. I now take a prescription medication that balances my moods and curbs menopause effects. Even with a hysterectomy, I still struggle. I’m upfront when I’m having a hard time. It’s not as dark or isolating but I get frustrated. My memory isn’t what it used to be. I have trouble sleeping. I tire easily than I used to. But it’s no where near where it was.
What do I wish the world knew?
1. It’s the darkest, most isolating and oppressive experience in the world. If you haven’t experienced it, you shouldn’t give answers as an expert.
2. It’s a vicious cycle, always looming. Just when you start to crawl out of the pit, there is a tug on your ankle threatening to pull you down and keep you there. It is frightening.
3. Isolation is the game plan of oppression. Love the person, no matter how much they protest, that they are going out with you for coffee. Show up with bagels. They will say they are busy and fine. Show up anyway.
4. If you’re not sure what to say, admit that. Transparency is an oasis. Patronizing, packaged answers are a wasteland. I didn’t feel better when I heard “I don’t know what your problem is.” Or, “You just need to snap out of it.” If I could have, I promise you, I would have led the way.
5. Jesus Christ CAN set you free. I admitted above that even as a Christian I struggled, so I get that you might argue why bother? Because without Him, I promise you, I’d be a dead statistic. Knowing HIm gave me enough hope to speak out, to call and seek help. I could picture Him next to me, weeping with me. That helped me so much. He is real, He is for you. Don’t go another step without Him.
To learn more, please visit the following: peacewithGod.net
First appeared at Christians Read
I love to chat. Food. Current Events. Sports. What Jimmy Fallon did last night on The Tonight Show. What God’s showing me.
But sometimes I have to bring up discussion that’s more business related. I struggled with that for a long time but realized if I don’t talk about my writing and where to find it, there isn’t an opportunity to share resources God has for you to live free in Christ.
So that’s a talk I need to bring to you today. A bit of writing stuff is going on, and I want to let you know about it. If you want to tell others, I’d love that.
- Match Made in Heaven. It’s not too late to join other Julie Arduini newsletter subscribers as they follow Beth Prescott and Dean Kellerman in Match Made in Heaven. It’s my contemporary romance that offers surrender issues, chocolate, and the Finger Lakes setting of Hammondsport, NY. The April issue offers archive links to previous installments as well as the current one. Subscribe for free in the right sidebar at juliearduini.com and watch your inbox for activation.
- Rose Blooms. This short story is one you can vote on, and I hope you do. My plan is to expand it this November as part of NaNoWriMo and write a rough draft as part of a new Finger Lakes contemporary romance series. Read and vote here.
- To Write a Story. Valerie Comer was kind enough to let me stop by and share my plotting resources. If you wonder what goes on with fiction creation, read my process here.
- Jasmine’s Place. Have you discovered the beautiful thing that is Jasmine’s Place? It’s an e-zine for women filled with articles and interviews on family, beauty, fashion, faith, cooking, and more. The publishers have been so kind to allow me to participate with each issue. I’ve been interviewed, wrote articles, shared short stories, and created blurbs. This is an international project and one I’m very proud to work with.
- Christians Read. Did you know I blog every other Wednesday with Vicki Hinze, Kathi Macias, Sarah Goebel, James Rubart, Hannah Alexander, Maureen Lang, Beth Goddard, Tara Randel, Lynette Sowell, Yvonne Lehman, Kristen Heitzmann? Now Christians Read has a website, and I hope you bookmark it. You can read my posts, too.
- Coming Soon. A couple years or so ago, a few of my FaithWriter challenge entries placed and were eligible to be part of the FaithWriter anthologies. The anthologies are taking shape so I’ll keep you updated. I’m also working with a group of authors on a project that will encourage a segment of women who could use the support. I should have news on that front, too. Stay tuned!
This has been a tough month. If it were only the government shutdown or healthcare issues.
But it seems so much more, you know?
My inbox has been fuller than usual with requests asking, “would you pray for me?”
- There have been jobs lost
- New diagnosis
- Family issues
- Relationship troubles
- and more.
It wasn’t that long ago that I was in a season where the hits came coming. They were so fast, so devastating that as a pretty solid in faith Jesus girl, I was reeling. To the point of wondering if God had a punchline, and I was it.
I learned a lot from that season, and the ones that have followed it. Earlier this week I was at Christians Read and I shared what my husband did to help me.
Do you have a confession? If so, share here. Let’s encourage each other. You are not alone.