Pretending smiles

Kids discovered a little patch of wonder on top of a dingy storm drain during an afternoon walk. This stopped us in our tracks as we long marveled at this micro world. It looked nothing like its surrounding hard and tough exterior. Beauty is found if we look deeper and closer.

This sight was what I needed that day; it’s been one of those weeks where unexplainable sadness swept over me again and I dreaded its effects: crying randomly, withdrawing, insomnia, oversleeping, feeling unworthy; the list goes on but I’ll stop there.

UNDERFACE
β€œUnderneath my outside face
There's a face that none can see.
A little less smiley,
A little less sure,
But a whole lot more like me.”
- Shel Silverstein

It was an ironic turn of events, because I was half-done writing a positive post about how glad I felt my depression was finally lifting. I’ve been more proactive taking care of my mental health by meeting with a psychiatrist that began 6 months ago. It’s a tumultuous emotional and mental process that is hard to describe. It doesn’t look like anything is wrong from the outside, but inside it’s a tangled mess of questioning, accusing, and belittling myself. This kind of stuff is not something you bring up lightly during dinner or mention it in passing without getting raised eyebrows.

I’d rather hide it under a smile and not get into it. But this pretending takes a lot out of me. It’s at these times that I need to turn to God for help, but I do the exact opposite. I turn away deliberately filling my life with distractions. I refused to read or even get close to opening the Bible during this time. Sometimes the misery is familiar and getting better is frightening. You want to share to get some support, but it’s hard to be vulnerable and to feel like you are burdening the other person with your problems.

Anyways, that’s how I’ve been feeling these days. I felt better after reading God’s word, which I have been avoiding, and reminding myself firmly that God has a purpose for me. He encourages me when I least expect it and reaffirms that depression does not disqualify me from love. What a journey! When I feel sad, I don’t know why I have to explain that I’m not faking the funk. It’s a vicious cycle of ups and downs.

Isaiah 40:31
"But they who wait for the Lord shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings like eagles; they shall run and not be weary; they shall walk and not faint."
How did this grow there?
Lush and vibrant

This blog is a snippet of my life journey and this messy bit is a part of it.

Readers, I appreciate you being here and reading my posts! I feel extremely blessed for this blogging community and for family and friends. God encourages me through them and I hope to do the same for them.

8 thoughts on “Pretending smiles

  1. My friend, I am very pleased to hear that you’re making progress where your health is concerned. God is our rock. He certainly swoops in and encourages us at the time we need it the most. He has a purpose for each and everyone of His children no matter where we might be in life. May He continue to bless and uplift you as you continue to chase after His heart.

    Blessed week to you, Esther! πŸ’™

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    • Thanks Diana! I am feeling better these days. It was disheartening to think that I was backtracking and going through that awful phase. I got to surrender it to God, but I’m grappling with what that means as well. I’ve been telling myself to take it easy on myself as we wrap up the year. I’m so hard on myself.
      Thank you for your encouragement! I am so blessed that God loves me despite the issues. I would’ve gotten tired of them by now, but he still pursues me. Waiting expectantly each day for the peace and joy that only he can give. You too! God bless.

      Liked by 1 person

      • You’re welcome, my friend, and I’m happy to hear that you’re feeling better lately. I understand, but with God by your side, you’ll get through. Try not to be too hard on yourself as you continue to navigate through the days ahead.

        Amen, sis! He loves you no matter what and that’s why He’s not giving up on you. Yes! Amen! Thank you and may the peace of God continue to reign in your heart. πŸ’™πŸ˜„

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  2. Wow… reading this post felt like I read it. I can 100 percent relate to everything you’re saying. Just wow! I am so glad that you’ve found a way to get through it. It definitely takes time and a village. I know we are internet strangers but I am sending tons of love and hugs!

    Your little ones sound like absolute joys to be around ❀

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    • Thank you for your kind comment! It’s sure good to know that people can relate to my experiences and that we share a lot in common. Depression is isolating and the last thing you want to do is open up.
      Thanks for sending the love and hugs…received! πŸ™‚ Same to you.

      My nuggets are hilarious and if you bring up poop or farts, oh my, stand back. They roar with laughter. Something about kids and those topics. When your little one gets older, you’ll get pretty comfortable talking about those things.
      Hope you are having a good week so far and looking forward to the new year. πŸ™‚

      Liked by 1 person

  3. In my other comment I said “I am sure your Christmas has seemed normal since you have kids around” but I am sorry if your sadness and other feelings continue to plague you. For some, in a normal year, seeing others in a constant euphoric state due to parties, family, gifts, etc. and if you’re not part of that, it can make you feel lost. I am sorry I didn’t put up any decorations … my house is cluttered, life seems cluttered and complicated due to COVID … I hope the new year brings a ray of hope for normalcy after a horrid year on many levels. Take care Esther.

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