Friday, May 08, 2009

My Old Nemesis


Just checking to see if I spelled it right. There's no spell check in the title bar.

So my old nemesis raised it's ugly head this week. Maybe it was the 57 consecutive days of gray and rain. Maybe it was still grieving the loss of my niece. Maybe it was Robb being away. Maybe it was a big mess on one my etsy orders that had me minus two of my best mosaics and no money. Maybe it's my current trend for insomnia. Maybe it's wanting a house of my own so much I can taste the paint chips but then getting bills in the mail and knowing we're still months away. Maybe I'm worried about some of my friends who are in a bad spot. Maybe it was a host of other things that have been simmering below the surface for months. Maybe it's bio engineered food and global warming and the economy and swine flu and the just general screwed-up-ness of this world.

Whatever the combination, it had me curled up in a ball behind the piano, with nothing left. Yeah, so apparently depression is back. So if I have bonked on getting back to your phone-call or answering an email, please don't take it personally. I'm just in a death-match with my seratonin and I'm a little busy right now trying to drag the dead weight of my emotions around.

Yesterday was better. Robb stayed home for the morning and we took a walk and talked about some of the static crazy that had built up. I finished some mosaics, took pictures for my etsy store, did a little gardening, and we made burgers on the grill.

This morning, after a muggy night, I went out and cut the first roses of the year. They are deep red, cluster roses and they smell wonderful. But the sky is growing blacker every minute and we are scheduled for days and days and days of rain, thunderstorms and cloudy weather. So I'm sitting with the lightbox on. And I'm blogging. Two points to me.

I'm scared. Looked at my bank account this morning and stifled a wave of terror. You think I'm being dramatic, and I know I am. Because the way these chemicals work, I can't tell the big stuff from the small stuff. And that's a scary thing...running from oversize shadows that turn out to be your own. One of the best things about sitting in a ball completely strung out on your own fear is waking up the next day and finding out that even though you fell apart, God didn't stop holding the world together. That even though my reality is telling me all the time that it's hopeless, God's reality is much different.

I listen to the Daily Audio Bible via iTunes. I try to listen every day. Sometimes I fall behind, but it is easy to catch up. Yesterday, I listened to Hannah's song. It was meaningful to me. There is something to be learned from the way she prayed. There is something to be learned from her hope being fully in God. She was tormented unjustly. Her husband didn't quite understand her. Her priest judged her unfairly. But God was listening. And he gave her what she asked for. And this is what she said (with my asides in italics):

1 Hannah prayed: I'm bursting with God-news! I'm walking on air.
I'm laughing at my rivals. I'm dancing my salvation.
2-5 Nothing and no one is holy like God,
no rock mountain like our God.
Don't dare talk pretentiously—
not a word of boasting, ever!
(I HATE pretentiousness too Hannah!)

For God knows what's going on.
He takes the measure of everything that happens.
The weapons of the strong are smashed to pieces,
while the weak are infused with fresh strength.
The well-fed are out begging in the streets for crusts,
while the hungry are getting second helpings.
(I don't really want any one to go hungry, but I'm anxious about grocery money)

The barren woman has a houseful of children,
while the mother of many is bereft.
6-10 God brings death and God brings life,
brings down to the grave and raises up.
God brings poverty and God brings wealth;
he lowers, he also lifts up.
(Sometimes I feel really low when I buy everything second-hand)

He puts poor people on their feet again;
he rekindles burned-out lives with fresh hope,
Restoring dignity and respect to their lives—
a place in the sun!
(This is all I want for the people of Vintage Fellowship...sometimes it seems like I'm asking for too much from God. But this says that that is what God does. I'm glad to hear that God and I are on the same page about this.)

For the very structures of earth are God's;
he has laid out his operations on a firm foundation.
He protectively cares for his faithful friends, step by step,
but leaves the wicked to stumble in the dark.
(protectivly cares for us....sigh of relief)
No one makes it in this life by sheer muscle!
(my mantra is "I'll make it work." I guess I need a new mantra)

God's enemies will be blasted out of the sky,
crashed in a heap and burned.
God will set things right all over the earth,
(seriously? That's what I long for in the night when I stare at the ceiling.)
he'll give strength to his king,
he'll set his anointed on top of the world!

Depression comes to me for many reasons. Some are chemical, some are spiritual. I don't believe for a second that if I just read my Bible and pray more, my depression will go away. That's a sick lie. But if I read my Bible and pray more, it helps. Two points to me. And all the points to God.


12-arrows said...

WOW! thank you for putting yourself out there and sharing what your reality is. I want you to know that in so many of your statements I am walking with you, struggling, frustrated, angry, hurt and just plain tired. I am very weary these days, and like you, I NEED sunshine for my physical and mental well-being and PTL we've actually had it the past 6 days, minus a few hours of rain yesterday, a blessing to me and it helps me to keep my head from looking down, stumbling, sounds crazy to some but. . . .we've been in a tough situation for 3.5 years and honestly I am very sick of it. I, like you, ache to have my own home, something alot smaller, more managable for me, ache to pay one bill on time and not worry that our utilities will be shut-off, hate the fact that we depend on our older children for help, a very humbling position, and feel so very alone on a daily basis. Its with tears I write this, and also with fear. . . fear of rejection, of embarassement and of loss of respect. So friend, you are an inspiration to me today, your scripture touched a pocket in my heart that needed a soft touch. Thank you!

gerbmom said...

Because the way these chemicals work, I can't tell the big stuff from the small stuff.yes. that is so true. and I have been there. hugs for you my friend, and I hope the sky starts to brighten soon. Until then I will keep praying for you.

no platitudes about God, or Bible. you've heard it all. and tho well meaning, it's just not true. Hang on to God til it's better, even if your grip is tenuous and you can't see his face. It's all you can do. Until the sun comes out or you remedicate - whichever comes first! ;)

hugs, hugs, and more hugs.

Jess said...

Ness, this is a great post. It made me think of the song by Pierce Pettis, - You move me. Heard it? Here are the lyrics.
This is how it seems to me
Life is only therapy
Real expensive
And no guarantee

So I lie here on the couch
With my heart hanging out
Frozen solid with fear
Like a rock in the ground

But you move me
You give me courage I didn't know I had
You move me
I can't go with you
And stay where I am
So you move me

This is how love was to me
I could look and not see
Going through the emotions
Not knowin' what they mean

And it scared me so much
That I just wouldn't budge
I might have stayed there forever
If not for your touch

Oh but you move me
Out of myself and into the fire
You move me
Now I'm burning with love
And with hope and desire
How you move me

You go whistling in the dark
Making light of it
Making light of it
And I follow with my heart
Laughing all the way

Oh 'cause you move me
you get me dancing and you make me sing
You move me
Now I'm taking delight
In every little thing
How you move me

Praying for you friend.

ness said...

i love you guys. I can't believe we've never met in person...



Your imagery is incredible and makes me wish I'D thought of it! To me, that's the sign of a talented writer -- when I'm jealous of the imagery and the precision of the vocabulary. Like I said before, you are very, very good!

I know depression. You describe it masterfully. I wish you lacked the experience to do so.

You wrote "Sometimes I feel really low when I buy everything second-hand". May I put a spin on this? Those of us who buy everything second-hand WIN the game! We outsmart the whole retail, consumerism machine because we are clever and resourceful. I LOVE that feeling of not being a victim of commercialism! I understand that it feels bad to you at the moment but you have SO much to be proud of and you have already WON the game!

I have actually acquired a perverse thrill at having no money because it forces me to a new level of creativity. And I'm glad to know what it's like to dig coins out from under the seats in the car to buy milk for my children because that is valuable experience. I read recently that people who have experienced both times of plenty and times of want remember the times of want as having been more satisfying.

I also understand the toll taken by the financial stress and the empty bank account. I lost SEVEN houses and a business and owed a figure that ended in lots of zeros. There was no light at the end of the tunnel because it felt like there was no end. I came to a very profound understanding of how people might take their own lives over money.

But there was an end to the tunnel. And it all worked out. I lost a lot but somehow it was a good purge for a fresh start. Recently, someone I know killed himself because of debt-related depression. It breaks my heart that he never got to experience the satisfaction of having gotten through it and come out other side.

I'm not trying to fix it. Just wanted you to know you're not alone. Ok, and I wanted to offer a couple of alternative perspectives too! I'll admit that.

You say "I'll make it work". I say "there's got to be a way". We're both right. But for now, it may just be ok to hang out with the spiders behind the piano. You might even find something interesting back there!

I'll shut up now!


Life with Kaishon said...

It makes me so sad to read this. I wish I could say something wonderful like all of your dear blogging friends, but I don't have anything wonderful to say. So sad to know you fight this. It pains me to read of it. I will pray!

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