Michelle Williams Checks Into Mental Health Facility After Battling Depression | Essence.com

After years of battling depression, the former Destiny’s Child singer seeks out the help of a mental health professional and opens up about her journey with fans.
— Read on www.essence.com/celebrity/michelle-williams-mental-health-facility-battle-depression

I’m glad she admitted it. I currently live with depression and hearing her story is empowering. I think it’s important that [African American] community needs to here this from someone who looks like us. Hopefully it will encourage us to pursue treatment for those of us who need it. Mental illness is NOT weakness. Mental illness is NOT a white person’s disease. ANYBODY can have mental illness regardless of the color, socioeconomic status or age.

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The Spirit of Depression

Lately these past 2 months have been hard for me because of crippling depression. Yeah….I was battling anxiety, but I’ll just focus on depression right now. The depression was due to all the financial hardships I was facing, homelessness, and an exam I was preparing for (that I’ll be taking at the end of the week). Now…I’m struggling not to be depressed for being depressed these two months.

I felt I should have just focused on my exam instead of worrying. I felt like deep down, God was telling me “Just focus on the test. Don’t worry about the rest.” But the thing was…I did and I lost time to study. So what did I do after realizing this? I began praying to God.

Not saying I was not into prayer, but I haven’t made it a priority during the last few weeks of school. There was sooo much assignments to finish, that I didn’t take the time to make sure I kept my spirit replenish. While I take my meds (it helps to reduce the physical effects of anxiety and depression), having my spirituality helps me from letting my anxiety and depression from taking over me completely. So they both help keep me in tact.

It took me about a week and half to recover and to get back in the groove of my life. I hated that, because I had to like, learn to go back to sleep on time, push myself to communicate to my friends again, push myself eat and cook for myself, take my meds on time… Ugh! I was doing so well before that, before the end of school… Why was I regressing yet again? Look, I know that regression is part of the recovery process, but it’s so tedious because I had to relearn all my good habits all over again. Heck…I hard to push myself to attend “Celebrate Recovery” again.

When I attended my second week (since being MIA for about a month), Pastor Tom (not his real name), recounted his time overcoming his depression and he read off a scripture from the Bible that made sense why depression came back again:

When an impure spirit comes out of a person, it goes through arid places seeking rest and does not find it. Then it says, “I will return to the house I left.”

Luke 11:24 NIV

When I heard this, it was like a revelation to me. I’m rid of depression, I’m free and then depression, who apparently had nowhere to call home, said, “This isn’t working out. Guess I’ll return to the old stomping grounds.” Oh vey…

Well the good thing is even the Bible, mental illness was recognized. Well actually…it wasn’t called mental illness, because there probably wasn’t a name for all the mental illnesses that existed at the time. That’s probably why mental illness was never mentioned. In fact, the closest word that was used to define “depression” was “melancholia” (History of Depression). Sorry I’m going to sidetrack a little here. The ancient Greeks believed that all diseases were a imbalance of the four bodily fluids or the four “humors”: sanguine (red bile), phlegmatic (clear plasma) melancholic (black bile), and choleric (yellow bile). In fact that’s where the name melancholy comes from: Melas meaning “Black” and Kholé meaning (hmmm…doesn’t this also remind you of the word coal?) “Bile” (History of Depression). Ancient Greeks believed that if the black bile was not properly balanced with the other 3 humors, it would also impact a person’s mental and physical well-being (History of Depression). Well what do you know? Even the early Greeks believed in wholesome health.

Anyways… the more awesome news is Jesus sits on the throne.

I have told you these things, so that in me you may have peace. In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world.

John 16:33

So lately, I’ve been asking God to help lift my spirits up whenever I’m anxious and/or depressed, because whenever I’m too anxious or depressed I don’t have the strength to call upon on Him. And you know something? It’s been working! Just when I’m about to be depressed or anxious, I feel my spirits rise from under me. It’s the best thing. I know it sounds weird to ask from this from God, but nothing is too big or small for Him.

Ask and it will be given to you; seek and you will find; knock and door will be opened to you.

Matthew 7:7

In spite of living with mental illnesses, having it helps me to be more closer and more reliant on God and Jesus Christ. And there’s nothing wrong with that, because God doesn’t mind. Besides who know why else I live with mental illness. Maybe there’s something else God needs in me while having it. As long as Jesus sits on the throne, I’ll know be alright no matter how many times depression returns.

I waited patiently for the Lord; he turned to me and heard my cry. He lifted me out of the slimy pit, out of the mud and mire; he set my feet on a rock and gave me a firm place to stand. He put a new song in my mouth, a hymn of praise to our God. Many will see and fear the Lord and put their trust in him.

Psalm 40:1-3

Reference:

History of Depression

Depression…

Image result for picture of a dizzy person in bed

If anxiety feels like having a heart attack, then depression feels like having the flu. This past week and bit of last week, I was worried so much…how I was going pay my rent, my bills (like keeping my cell phone on), how I was going to pay off two parking tickets that totaled to $180 (I live in my school’s dorms), how I was going to get out of working with Lyft, how I was going pay my laptop (my laptop broke; it’s gonna cost me $300. I’m borrowing a laptop from my school), I worried if I was going to be on the street…yeah I’ve had a lot to worry about and now I  feel guilty about the time I have lost in order to take my state exam for my credential. So since Tuesday, I’ve been sleeping more, feeling more fatigued, body aches, eyes feeling puffy… It’s my fault…I shouldn’t have worried so much. Now I’m so tired….well I’m feeling better than before. I guess because I have my fan on and been putting on my aromatherapy candle (lavender mint) and just taking it easy. But I feel so bad that I’ve canceled on most of my friends as well as not returning any of the texts. They’ve been understanding so far, but it still sucks.

It’s been a long time since I’ve felt my depression like this. The last time I did was in 2010, the year after I graduated and the year after it was announced it was (officially) announced that the nation was going through a recession. It was really bad. I felt to weak to get up, every muscle ached like I was going through the flu…I even had sinus headaches. My face felt so tender. Ugh… Since I have been diagnosed with generalized anxiety disorder and major depressive disorder and been taking anti-depressants while it has staved off my anxious and depressive disorders, it definitely has helped me with the physical effects of the depression and anxiety. But with all the worrying I’ve done and me not taking my medications lately. So my suggestion is please, please stay on your medication, don’t skip until further notice…until maybe your struggling with money like me.

Remembering Our Fallen Heroes

While we use this day to remember our fallen heroes who have died in battle, we should also take the time remember the vets who have died by suicide. According to the Reuters online website, veterans die by suicide—22 deaths a day or one every 65 minutes on average. This is usually committed by those who are 50 years and older, with numbers of 69% or higher. That doesn’t include, for example, the data from 2012— where there were 349 on-duty suicides.

When our soldiers come home, it won’t always be visible scars…but at times emotional ones. These invisible scars can come in the form of warning signs. According to Maketheconnection.net, these signs can include:

  • Feeling hopeless, trapped or feeling there’s no way out
  • Having persisting or worsening troubling sleep
  • Withdrawing from family and friends
  • Engaging in risky behavior without thinking of the consequences
  • Feeling like there’s no reason to live

In addition to those examples, there maybe more signs that require immediate attention. These may include:

  • Giving away prized possessions
  • Frequently talking, writing, or drawing about death or about items that can cause physical harm
  • Behaving violently such as punching holes in walls, getting into fights or engaging in self-harm acts
  • Putting their affairs in order, tying up loose ends, and/or making a will

In Riverside, CA today, members of the organization, Veteran Suicide Awareness Project, had their 3rd annual Memorial Day Ruck March. In this event, they can walk as nearly 40 miles, while carrying 22 pounds of rucksack to signify the 22 veterans who commit suicide everyday. One woman, the event organizer and an Air Force Veteran herself, Evita De La Cruz, carried 22 pounds of her husband’s belongings—such as his boots and helmet from Iraq—who died by suicide in 2013 after serving in the military. The proceeds will go to families who had a vet that die by suicide. I hope their event went well to shed light on suicide and our vets.

If you are a vet or you know a vet who may need help, contact the link below:

The Veterans Crisis Line is 800-273-8255, then press 1. Help via text is available at 838-255 and veterans can chat at www.veteranscrisisline.net.

Readings:Riverside Ruck March Shines Light On Veteran Suicide

Me Right Now…

Sorry for being MIA. I’ve been really busy juggling school, student teaching and work and having a bit fun. Trust me I NEEDED it. It’s been one heck of crazy month. I’ll fill you later.