Anyone who has depression understands the disconnect from responsibility that happens far too often. During these lows you neglect tasks that need to be done because you can’t even begin to think about getting out of bed or doing anything that might require a thought process. There is a total shut down that happens. And I encourage that behavior. I despise it. But I allow it. I enable it for as long as I need to. But I am so done with that mindset. I’m furious with myself for becoming this person who gives in to their mental illness. I live my life in a constant state of anxiety, denial, and disconnect. And I’m done.
Important mail piles up, piles pile up, laundry doesn’t get done, my floor becomes a pathway of items instead of a floor. The house can be completely clean and dishes need to be done…but I can’t function enough to keep my own room organized. My room becomes a direct product of my depression.
I’m breaking up with my depression. I’m breaking up with avoiding my psychiatrist. I’m breaking up with the inability to keep my life together. This week is the beginning of the new me. I am NOT my depression. I am NOT my anxiety. Or my PTSD. I am Kait. I am a daughter of God. I am a fully capable woman who can handle life without giving in to my diagnosis. Not only handle life but dominate it. And not because I am strong. Not because I am able. I’m not. I am fully aware of my own shortcomings, trust me. But I can do all things through God who gives me strength.
I will start my day talking with the Lord, and continue my day talking with Him. I will get ahead of this illness. I will take my meds. I will meet with my psych on a regular basis. I will not give in to the behaviors of my illnesses. I refuse to be that person. It is not who I am.
I can only describe this time as bittersweet. Today marks 77 days since my last day at work and my heart aches for my little one I take care of. I miss everything about being a pediatric care tech and am counting the seconds until I can return to work.
I miss normalcy. I miss teaching preschoolers on Sunday mornings. I miss meeting with the students on Sunday nights. I miss going out for coffee with my friends. I miss going out with my man after a long work week and just staring into each other’s eyes over a candlelit dinner (yeah yeah…we can still do this, but our dog isn’t the best waiter). I miss the mundane and I miss the crazy. There are so many things I took for granted that I completely ache for now.
But I am so ridiculously blessed. I haven’t personally lost anyone in this pandemic, but I know so many who have. Financially, I am struggling in this time of being laid off, but God has abundantly provided every time I have needed. Mentally, I am hanging in there, I’m blessed with a “team” of support when it comes to my mental health so my heart goes out to those who are feeling the depths of depression during this time. I pray that they are being supported and loved during this trying time.
Joy has been found in the Lord across the world in this pandemic. My students are flourishing in their own personal walks with God. They are encouraging one another, they are taking to social media to hold virtual Bible studies, and they are sending cards and flowers to those who need it. They are thriving and they are creative in their own personal study of the Word. I am so proud of each and every one of them for how amazingly they are handling their senior year of high school. I have seen my preschool parents post the fun things their kiddos are doing, from climbing trees, to making posters to hang out of their cars for a drive-by birthday party, to making their parents breakfast in bed. My friends and I are doing check-ins with each other…just to let each other know we are here and we are praying for one another. So many virtual hugs and “coffee vibes” have been sent out. Relationships are being built stronger than ever before. I am seeing God in all of this. I am seeing Him work in ways I haven’t seen before and that is so encouraging.
The church is not a building. The church is people continuing the ministry of Christ. The church is people reaching out those who need a conversation. The church is meals being delivered. The church is drive-by conversations held 6 feet apart with masks on. The church is responding to this time in such a beautiful way that only God could orchestrate. And I’m blown away.
So continue to spread the joy of the Lord during this time, it is so very needed.
…God has blessed me beyond measure!
Serving in student ministry has looked a little different since COVID-19 caused schools to shut down and life to shift. The butterflies of prom and the nervousness of graduation were replaced with a stay-at-home order and senior year dreams crushed. They are completely devastated. They are aware there are worse things going on in the world right now but this is a major time in their lives that they have all been looking forward to for years.
I figured I needed to do something to help sweeten this bitter time! I want so badly to hug all of my girls but I can’t. So I settled for video chats, phone calls, texts, and brownie deliveries. Hopefully this will all blow over by the summer and we can gather as a group to praise the Lord for keeping us healthy and safe during this time.
I’ve struggled through some frustrating medical problems most of my life. Not nearly as much as my brother has, but mine have seemed to become more severe as I’ve gotten older.
I am still dealing with the aftermath of my skin disease, and auto-immune disease triggered by stress that only about 50 people have ever been diagnosed with. According to the surgeons and doctors at the Hospital at University of Pennsylvania, I was the worst case they’d ever seen.
I scheduled a doctors appointment just to get more specialists figured out. I need a new gastrointestinal doctor and surgeon. One who isn’t going to take organs out or give me pills to rebuild my esophogus instead of finding answers to a 20+ year old problem. And I need a new cardiologist, orthopedic surgeon, endocrinologist, dermatologist, and OBGYN. The list seems endless and frustrating. But I’m determined to feel better and get answers.
It isn’t fun waking up puking every single morning. It isn’t fun having a constant fever. Or a heart beat that won’t return to 55 but stays at a horrible 120-175BPM. I want to be able to eat something without feeling like I’m going to die afterwards. And the migraines are getting really old. I don’t know how my mom deals with them so much but they flat out suck.
I want to enjoy life and be healthy and be able to work my butt off for the Lord. And I can’t keep functioning at 100% because I’m exhausted fighting all of this all of the time. I can’t help people the way I want to when I’m this sick all the time. Please pray for me as I attempt to…yet again…find answers and healing.
…not their problem.
A relationship means that you come together to make each other better. Believe in each other. Support each other. Build each other. Be their peace, not their problem.
Thank you, Pinterest for this awesome bit of relationship advice. Now I’m going to add to it.
A Christ-centered relationship means that you come together with God. Pray for them. Pray with them. Worship together. Make God the center of everything you do and decide. Support each other. Keep each other accountable. Keep the focus on God together. Pray for peace in your relationship, not strife. Love Christ together. Love like Christ together. Read the Word together. Pray that you are a source of peace in your relationship and not resentment. Pray that God is their source of peace.
Lysa TerKeurst has been through the wringer. Satan has attacked her and her family because she is allowing God to work through her and use her. She has been strong through it all and so filled with the grace and love of Christ.
I strive to get to the place where my circumstances will not destroy my relationship with God or my mood. Even a little bit. I pray that God will use my pain and suffering and trials and that I won’t become hardened and bitter.
Her circumstances over the past few years would have left me bedridden and destroyed. The ultimate human rejection. I don’t think my bounce back from that heartbreak would be filled with as much understanding and grace as hers was. I don’t know what her time of mourning looked like after finding out of her husband’s infidelity but I know that how she wrote about it and used the pain to showcase the love of Christ was monumental and incredible. Truly a mirror image to the love of our Lord.
She is a representation of beauty from ashes. Learning from her pain. Growing and building her relationship with God despite her grief. What Satan meant for destruction the Lord used for good. The forgiveness and grace for her husband is huge and beautiful. Their love for each other and the rebuilding of what was broken is just such a testament to God’s love.
I want to hug her so tightly and thank her for her testimony. I pray the Lord can work on my heart and soften it so that I pour out love instead of bitterness.
Isaiah 41:1 God is our refuge and strength. A very present help in trouble.
Isaiah 41:10 Fear not, for I am with you. Do not be dismayed, for I am your God. I will strengthen you. Yes, I will help you, I will uphold you with my righteous right hand.
Isaiah 43:2 When you pass through the waters, I will be with you.
What a week it has been. On Sunday evening I had a heart episode while in the hot springs in Ouray, Colorado. Since then it has been an exhausting week of going to urgent care in Albuquerque, New Mexico on Monday, being advised not to fly, going on two flights traveling back to Pennsylvania on Tuesday, being met by EMT’s at the Philadelphia Airport, and going to the ER on Thursday.
It is now Friday and I’m beat and I still don’t have any answers. An MRI, neurologist visit, and psychologist visit are my next steps.
Josh has been incredibly supportive this past week. He has been by my side through the entire thing and has been constantly pointing me back to relying on the Lord by how he shows Christ’s love to me. He epitomizes what it means to be unconditional. And I’m so grateful God has him by my side.
With everything that has happened since November and everything we’ve gone through together, I know for a fact we’ve survived it because God is the center of our relationship. And we laugh….a lot. That definitely helps.
My heart breaks for you. I am in utter agony as I witness you hurt yourself in the same ways I have these past 15 years. No one deserves to battle an eating disorder. No one deserves the unbearable agony and overwhelming shame that comes with an eating disorder. An ED will take over your entire being to the point of crippling pain.
Every single moment of your existence is saturated in the bitterness of an eating disorder. The control, the anger, the frustration, the shame, it is so overwhelming. It isn’t just eating. When someone tells you to just eat you can’t. It isn’t that simple. It’s not just a switch inside your head, it isn’t just telling yourself to eat.
It’s every single controlling thought swarming around that’s making you physically unable to eat. It’s a battle in your mind of trying to shut out the demons, trying to overpower them while they are overpowering you. It’s pain. It’s torment.
And it’s almost impossible for anyone not going through it to understand.
So dear sister…I am so sorry. I am so incredibly sorry you are going through this trial. I wish I could take it away in an instant. And I can’t and that’s killing me.
I pray that you hear God’s voice over the voices in your head telling you that you’re not good enough. I pray that His love is enough for you to get through this. I pray that we can all come together to help you get through this. Because you, my dear, you are good enough. You are loved. You are beautiful. You are enough.
And you are in control…
Day 15 of my medication change. It is the first day that has been without an intense sobbing hyperventilating mental breakdown. My brain hasn’t been spinning with morbid thoughts of immediate doom and despair. It’s been a good day. A very good day. A genuinely happy day filled with joy and rational thoughts and laughter.
The past 14 days were probably the deepest depression I have ever been in. To say I was not handling it well at all would be an understatement. The inability to leave my bed, not cry, or breathe normally was overpowering. I was not functioning and I was unable to cope or self regulate at all when I was alone.
My already amazing ability to filter my thoughts before they leave my mouth was completely gone. I wasn’t turning to God when the panic attacks were inevitably about to start and I wasn’t turning to God when I couldn’t summon the strength to get out of bed. I was just trying to survive. I wasn’t even able to imagine a light at the end of the tunnel.
Hopefully this is over. Hopefully the chemistry in my brain is done messing around, but that’s probably not the case. I still have 2 months until I titrate up to the amount my psychiatrist wants me on for my meds. I’m hoping that if I do go back into a deep depression I at least know to cry out to God and continue to worship Him despite the nightmare going on in my head. My hope is to rely on the Lord.
I am enjoying this breakthrough. It is now day 16, and so far so good 🙂 I’m so beyond grateful to my boyfriend, friends, and family for their overwhelming love and support and distractions. They mean the world to me.