May is Mental Health Awareness Month. I’ve been trying to formulate something to say… while I don’t claim to understand a lot of what people go through, I do have a story of my own. We all have a story.
But the past is not as important as the present, so I won’t dwell on what I went through. All that matters is that I overcame it by God’s strength. The only thing that cured my anxiety attacks and suicidal thoughts several years ago, was growing closer to the Lord. Now, on a current day-to-day basis, when the chemicals in my brain become imbalanced due to stress or trauma, and my heart starts to race, I have homeopathics and essential oils on hand. And with some natural supplements over the course of just four weeks I’ve seen a huge decrease in my stress and an increase in my mental clarity.
I’ve been blessed with a wonderful support group of family and close friends who know me and aren’t afraid to poke at my heart and brain when I don’t focus on Christ while I’m in a valley. You are not alone, reader. Don’t keep your thoughts and emotions bottled up inside. I did for far too long and I ended up wounding myself. Never physically, mind you, but sometimes mental wounds run deeper than physical ones ever could.
The important first step is to acknowledge that you are not where you could or should be. The second step is doing something about it. Nothing changes by doing the same thing. Does social media depress you? Decrease or eliminate it in your life for a time. Are you eating food that does not feed your brain but instead breaks down your immune system? Make the changes necessary to feed your body so you have clarity of mind. Are you over working yourself or accepting too many social invitations? Stop wearing yourself thin and give yourself time to rest.
Don’t be overwhelmed by change. Take one thing at a time in bite-sized pieces. You can do it. And you can do it even better with the help of those around you. Don’t shut them out. While some people might be fake and toxic, not all of them are. Be brave.
There are still some days that I want to be a hermit. But I know that’s not how God made me to be. So I have to choose each day to seek Him first thing as a foundation of my day, and be a friend to others when I would rather be alone.
I’m so blessed to have wonderful friends that energize me. That’s a big deal for an introvert like me. I love people. But it’s a struggle to balance my need for people and my need for space.
I am happy and content. God is faithful. But that doesn’t mean life is easy. An anchor off the bow of a ship doesn’t keep it from being tossed by waves. But it keeps it from drifting off and being lost at sea. What is your anchor? Who is your anchor? If it is anything other than Christ, your anchor will not hold. There are valuable things that are links in the chain, such as family, friends, healing supplements, meditation, time spent in nature, etc., But your anchor has to be sure.
I never once doubted the love and protection of my parents. They carry me through everything as long as I allow them. I’m fortunate and more blessed than I could ever express.
Let’s not be embarrassed or afraid to be honest with each other. We all have a story. Your story matters. You matter.
Courage, dear heart.