Posted in Musings

Depression 1.13 – The 8 Slash 6 Cylinder Man

I have come to the conclusion that I fire on six cylinders.

The issue is that I am an eight cylinder man.

I can’t remember the last time I was firing on all of them.

They aren’t knocking yet, but it’s just a matter of time. There’s a lot of miles, hard ones, on the odometer.

It’s a wonder six are still firing. It makes it rather miraculous that I can make it through the day, let alone accomplish anything.

It seems I am pulling off on the side of the road to doze more often now. My mind knows where to go. I am just so tired and it takes so much fuel to figure out how to get there.

Others race by. Their exhaust exhausts me. Death is the end to this race. Why try to get there quicker?

Elegiac grips me until my mind spins.

Lethargy holds me down.

I am captured between the two, racing, yet going nowhere.

I am a six cylinder body with an eight cylinder mind.

Come close and you will catch the faint scent of burnt oil.

Posted in Musings

Depression 1.11 – The Gift of Brokenness

The gift of depression is compassion. I look in the mirror everyday and know that I am broken.

Elegiac tells me that I should stay there, captured by this narcissistic reflection.

Yet to do so is to miss the truth that I see through a glass dimly, that “now I only see in part, then I will see in full.”

And that often my reflection as seen through the lens of depression is not how God sees me.

Knowing that I am broken can incapacitate me.

Or it can serve as the humble catalyst for me to show grace and mercy, compassion and gentleness, and above all, patience, to others.

Tonight, I will serve a meal to women whose lives have been upended in ways that leave me breathless. They are broken like me. Yet they are strong, so strong.

They are always gracious, kind, and encouraging and I always leave feeling like I have received more than I have given.

And for the briefest of moments, I do not feel the weight of Elegiac and Lethargy, my everpresent twins, upon my shoulders.

Posted in Musings

Depression 1.10 – The Other Is Lethargy

I mourn the loss of the moments of lucidity.

When the words run like liquid gold. When joy envelopes me. When clarity ceases to be a mystery.

Then Elegiac spreads its wings and my vision falls once again into the shadows.

What I saw disappears and I am left wandering through the rest of the day stumbling like a blind man after elusive Braille.

I am so tired. Yet I cannot let go of what I thought I glimpsed beyond the veil.

Another winged companion joins Elegiac. It alights upon my other shoulder, a weight so heavy and cold that it seeps into the very marrow of my bones.

Its name is Lethargy.

Posted in Musings

Depression 1.9 – Swimming in Inadequate Sea

Part of the struggle is listening through the noise, the endless chattering of Elegiac and its kin.

The negative carries more weight than the positive. Criticism is easier to believe, to receive, over affirmation. My mind cycles through blow upon blow, Elegiac’s incessant pecking at my neck.

Elegiac likes to remind me of my inadequacies. Social Media plays on those with its endless notifications.

Did you post yet? Your friends haven’t heard from you in awhile.

Notifications remind me of what I am not getting done. Look at me. Click here. Go there.

So I have begun to remove myself from the sticky strands of the world wide web. I am scattered all over the place. Is it any wonder I do not feel whole? I have rediscovered the power of the delete button, the unsubscribe link, the cancel subscription choice.

I did not choose to have depression, but I do have a choice about what I will pay attention to. What I will participate in. Who or what I will follow. Where I will invest my life.

To ask the question, does this give me life?

Simply put, if something brings me down, bums me out, depresses me, enrages me, makes me feel inadequate, I must have the wherewithal to notice and then (newsflash!) stop doing it, listening to it, reading it, click, click, clicking on it!!

The constant clicking is what Elegiac would want me to do.

Yet I must resist.

I do not wish to desert the Master, to be led astray nip by subtle nip by distractions.

Can I honestly say each and every day as Simon Peter did,

“Lord, to whom would (I) go? Only You have the words of eternal life.”

Posted in Musings

Depression 1.8 – The Lie of Being Alone

Elegiac is a liar.

It tells me that it should be my only companion.

That I am alone.

Even in the midst of friends or in the arms of my lover, I am the hollow man. There is no warm heart beating inside my bone chested cage.

I exist in the land of numb.

How quickly the lie of being alone is compounded by other untruths until I am spinning, sliding down the slippery slope, in tune to the grinding chuckling of this wraith at my ear.

It whispers that I am the only one who is broken.

That there are no other hands to hold me or feet to walk with me.

That God does not know me.

That I am not fearfully and wonderfully made.

Until I shut my ears to the mocking beak, look up from myself, and find that I am surrounded by love.