Healing from Depression, Navigating the Underworld
Between 13 and 33, I struggled with depression. I was even suicidal.. Inability to cope with issues from childhood, previous rape and molestation, heartbreak , poor relationship choices all contributed to a feeling that my life sucked and it was miserable. Most people never knew. I presented well but inside, I knew I was faking it… I went through times that I came to call the going to the underworld. Psychologist call it the dark night of the soul. It was a place where I was stripped of all of the our trappings of image and belief and where my soul was naked and vulnerable..Fear, dread, tears….until I had no more tears. I had no more laughter.. The only thing that kept me alive during those times was my daughter…. I had to be there for her. She had no idea how many times she saved my life.
It took years to unpack all that was there…and learn how to heal. It wasn’t one thing either… It was layered and multiple things. The first thing I found was really understanding how I was giving my power away. I gave my power away to other people’s opinions, judgements, whether or not they wanted me..liked me, approved of me. It could come from family, men, friends.. or enemies. Because of that, many choices I made was not in my best interest but theirs. It left me with a martyr complex… Giving up my own happiness because other people said… What they thought was better. Or sacrificing my happiness so they could be. Once I finally took full responsibility for my own choices, I was able to overcome my fears and live my truth. …At least a little. I decided that if I make a mistake, let it be from my choices..not based on someone else’s choices for me. I am the only one who will reap the benefits or consequences of what I do.
The next layer came from overcoming heartbreak. Growing up with Disney, I set unrealistic expectations on relationships. Thinking that love, as I knew it from Disney was forever and unconditional , I had a difficult time letting go of relationships. Feeling rejected by my father, I accepted treatment in relationships that did not honor me. I made excuses for them. Thought I could fix them. I hid that from my family and friends too. My pride couldn’t let me admit that now that I made my own choices, I made poor choices in partners. Realizing that these were life lessons, I went through issues of first denial about my situation, then shame, then anger at men, then blame, then victimhood….before I could come to terms with the choices I made. Making a decision not to be a victim was the most empowering choice I could make at that point.
The thing about not being a victim is that no one is going to give that to you. You have to make an executive decision in your own mind that they don’t get to make you miserable unless you let them. They could do many things but only I had control of how I would respond. That meant creating boundaries and embracing what I now term is “the all mighty fuck it!” The Almightly Fuck it” is that place you get to where there is no more fear. Where the ego and it’s projections no longer matter. So I said “ Fuck it!”… I’m not taking anymore. And that was that.
In between these things, I also found some help in natural methods for working with my depression and these issues. One was yoga… There was a woman who taught a Yoga class that doubled as a sister circle where we also talked of healing and our lives. It was therapy for the body and soul. Relating what was happening in the body to our spiritual states really supported me in looking at things honestly. I was a massage therapy instructor but work on others and work on yourself is different. I needed that.
I also found homeopathy and flower essences were profound in their ability to help with depression, anxiety, and emotional issues. There were remedies for heartbreak, negativity, depression, hormonal imbalances… I started learning homeopathy to help myself and my family. Homeopathy is an ancient form of traditional healing dating back to Egypt that addresses the mind and body. Spiritual baths and flower essences enhanced that healing. I learned the remedies that worked from what they did for me. I honestly don’t know if my healing would have been as complete without them.
As I began to heal, I encountered others who were also struggling with depression, relationships, sexual abuse… as I had. My experiences led me to be able to help them..as I helped myself. Instead of fearing the underworld, I learned my way through it…to the point where I could escort others now. I have a number of clients and students that have been helped with some of these methods.
Now, I’m finally happy with my choices. Now I live my truth… popular or not. I have a wonderfully loving relationship with my husband. I share my story now to let others know… There is help… There really is a rainbow after the storms. It’s important to know that all of these things are really lessons for the souls growth. Of course it’s not easy…but understanding the lesson can free you. Understand that trouble don’t last always…
If you are having trouble with some of these issues, it may be time to seek support. I offer sessions in traditional healing and personal mentoring that may give you some tools to better handle your situation. Or, you make seek out a quality therapist that can help you navigate your underworld. Like I said above though. No one is going to do it for you. There is no magic spell or quick fix to healing. You must take steps to help yourself. If you are willing to do that, then your personal happiness is just around the corner.