chronically depressed

June 24, 2015 at 10:21 am 45 comments

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Remember in my last blog, I said that Dr. Val does not think it is a good idea to make major decisions when someone is depressed.  Well, one of my readers responded, disagreeing with Dr. Val and basically asking me when was the last time I was NOT depressed.  As if to say if you wait until you aren’t depressed to do something, you might be dead of old age. This reader made a good point….

I havealask been depressed for as long as I can remember. I don’t know when the last time I was actually truely happy… With the loss of my dog Moonlight, I guess it got worse; to where I am doing very minimal…mostly sitting around staring at the ceiling or working. Not very exciting for someone my age. Even Dr. Val asked me last session if I could be at all excited about something we were talking about…

So, I guess we could all agree that I am chronically depressed.  I think I have had moments of happiness, but they were fleeting. They may not even be defined as happiness, but for me, the absence of sadness, fear, aloneness, etc. But they don’t last long, I mean moments…

Most of us know what depression feels like, but imagine feeling that for the last 10-15 years of your life. It becomes part of who you are and that sort-of sucks.  Constantly tired, constant negative thoughts, constant doom and gloom, constant tears, …. for years.

So, I sat around yesterday thinking and I got more confused.  I feel like I am wasting my life, but I don’t know how to fix it.  I feel like life is passing me by, HAS passed me by, but I don’t know how to stop it. The train has come and I missed it and am left behind. I can’t tell myself to be happy, because that doesn’t dont_miss_the_train6322work…I’ve tried it.  I can’t “fake it until I make it.”….. .. doesn’t work. I take meds, I goto therapy, but it doesn’t seem to help. I think about suicide as much as I did in the past…

So instead of sitting around, staring at the ceiling and thinking about nothing, I tried to think about the decisions I am struggling with, so for example…

  • Do I pick up and move somewhere else, to try to start over to be happy? Would I be running away again?
  • Do I try to find a career instead of my “job”… ?   What the hell do I want to do with my life? Do I want to try school or culinary school?
  • Why the hell don’t I exercise?
  • Why do I eat crap all the time instead of giving my body healthy food?
  • Why am I afraid to get out and do SOMETHING to meet people?
  • How do I trust people so I can let them get to know me?
  • How do I stop hating myself and actually believe that I am worth something?
  • How do I stop living like I am?
  • How do I stop missing my dog, Moonlight?
  • How do I stop treating myself like shit?moving-services-winnipeg

As you can see, these questions require days of thinking.  Some are easier, like should I move again?  You see I  have moved so much and each time I was running FROM something and hopefully TO a better life.  But it’s not happening… I just keep running….life gets a little better, but when you keep running every couple years, it’s hard to really make a life.  It’s hard for people to understand if they have never moved alot or wandered around.  It can be an awfully lonely existence. But am I in the place that I should be? Can I make a life here?  Can I find something here that truely fills some of the needs I have?  I don’t know. I am not even sure I know what needs I have… how sad is that?

Some quesdisgustingselftions are harder like how do I stop hating myself and believe I am worth something?  I think people get born into a world NOT hating themselves and are raised believing they are worth something.  Neither of those happened for me.  Perhaps you can’t fix things like this. Perhaps you really can’t repair the damage from the past, and for example, I will always hate me.

Depression is a incredibly complex state.  Just because I am lying on mPrize-Winning-Chocolate-Cake-6inch_2y floor staring at my ceiling all day, does not mean I am not thinking. In fact, all this thinking is making me more exhausted.  I wish there was a magic potion that could take people’s depression away.  I used to think chocolate was the answer… but even that doesn’t work anymore.  Maybe smoking pot is the answer, but honestly after being high, I got depressed the next day, so I would have to smoke more.  That’s not healthy either…. my lungs don’t need that.

Trying to think about these things when you are already depressed can make depression worse, when you realize your life is a mess or you realize there are no true answers to these questions, at this time.  Maybe life is just a crapshoot and if you are lucky, it works out well for you… but maybe if you are unlucky, you spend every moment and ounce of energy trying to find a small piece of that luck… which maybe is not really ever yours.

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help foster kids this weekend = it’s frosty time comments … and questions about Jesus

45 Comments Add your own

  • 1. cella  |  June 24, 2015 at 10:28 am

    Hi Looney Tunes. Great that you wrote….good first step. Some thoughts.
    1). There will be another train coming along.
    2). Go outside and walk for 10 minutes.
    3). Go adopt another dog.
    4). Find something kind to do for someone today… (it can be tiny).

    What do you think?

    Reply
  • 2. manyofus1980  |  June 24, 2015 at 10:41 am

    your right about depression, it zaps the life out of you. i’m sorry your struggling so much. missing a pet is hard isnt it? talk some more with dr val about all the decisions you have to make. maybe between you answers will come. XX stay strong!

    Reply
  • 3. bethanylest  |  June 24, 2015 at 11:14 am

    Depression is exhausting. I have been there. I recommend exercise too because sometimes it can lift your mood. Is your neighborhood safe to walk around?
    LT, didn’t you take pottery or glass building classes once? What about trying classes like those again? It will get you connected to some other people with a similar interests. It’s hard to do when you are depressed, but these things will help.

    Reply
  • 4. Cal003  |  June 24, 2015 at 11:24 am

    Have you ever considered volunteering at an animal shelter? It might be a great place to meet like-minded people and you get to help animals in need. Those are two positive actions that might help lift your spirits.
    Best wishes sweet girl.

    Reply
    • 5. ritalee8383  |  June 24, 2015 at 11:20 pm

      That’s a great idea!

      Reply
  • 6. Jen  |  June 24, 2015 at 11:28 am

    Definitely go back to school! No one can ever take your education away from you. Pursuing that goal will help with some of your other questions, like should you move? How to meet others? It can also help you improve your self-esteem when your grades validate your hard work and dedication to your goal. Over time you will want to do the other things like eat healthy and exercise (which is great for depression). You will never stop missing Moonlight but the pain will get less over time. Just take it one step at a time. Peace.

    Reply
  • 7. Claudine  |  June 24, 2015 at 11:49 am

    Yeah, depression is such a complex, difficult state. My old therapist used to say that depression is anger turned inward. My energy healer says that depression is off-purposeness at the soul level of our being, and that it’s a signal to get on-purpose.

    For a career, why don’t you become what you already are: a writer? I’m not sure where you’re at with school, but I can tell you with certainty that you’re an amazing writer with a rare amount of talent. I’ve been a professional writer for many years, so I know a talented writer when I read one. If you’re ever interested in emailing and chatting about career options that are out there and first steps, please feel free to get in touch. It would be my pleasure to help.

    Reply
  • 8. Blessed Mom  |  June 24, 2015 at 11:52 am

    I don’t think any of us can make ourselves happy. We get joy from others and by doing things for others or with others. You’ve seen that – the things you did for your pets made you feel better than anything you do for yourself. When you take candy to the homeless shelter for Easter, that was you helping others. Every time you blog here and help foster and adoptive parents understand their own hurt children better, you help my family and others. I think that might be your train…one of your trains. I think what you said about learning to let others into your life is very important. I think it’s easier for most people to let in pets and children rather than adults. Start with what’s easier for you. Is there some place you can volunteer to help others, at a pet shelter, or at a homeless shelter.

    Blog or journal one positive or grateful thought each day. Once your list gets a little longer, you can read over it to help you think of more positive things. They don’t have to be huge. Something like this:
    1. I’m grateful for puffy Cheetos.
    2. I’m grateful for the time I had to enjoyed with Moonlight and shadow. (Grateful I still have those good memories).
    3. I’m grateful that I had such a beautiful dog, so beautiful that people noticed her and missed her when they saw me out without her.
    4. I’m grateful that I am capable of giving such great care to my pets – that I could provide them a safe loving home.
    5. I’m grateful that I have found Dr. Val and that she continues to invest her time in me.
    6. I’m grateful for my ability to write.
    7. I’m grateful to have an avenue to use my writing and past experiences to help others.
    8. I’m grateful to have an avenue to encourage others to support Wendy’s.
    9. I’m grateful that no one hurts me in my home any more.
    10. I’m grateful that I have a comfortable recliner
    11.I’m grateful for cartoons that make me laugh
    12. I’m grateful that I have a job
    13. I’m grateful that I have some money in the bank to know I can meet my physical needs.
    14. I’m grateful for Mrs. Liz
    15. I’m grateful for chocolate cake.

    Good change is slow and steady, sometimes so slow you can’t hardly see it moving.

    My joy comes from my relationship with God. I know that’s hard for you. A relationship with God is often the hardest for people that don’t have a loving earthly father in their life. We often imagine God to be like our experiences with our earthly father 😦 It doesn’t change God, it just makes it harder for us to see how great he really is. When people disappoint me, I take comfort in the fact that God isn’t human, so I can trust him in a way that I can’t trust people without being let down. I like to that I can talk to him no matter where I’m at, any time.

    Reply
  • 9. Lori  |  June 24, 2015 at 12:05 pm

    I don’t have alot of wise words because I think everyone experiences depression differently and has to recover from it their own way. But I understand how you feel because I was chronically depressed for a few years. Eventually I figured out what I needed and recovery started. Good luck to you and hang in there.

    Reply
  • 10. dswoger  |  June 24, 2015 at 12:06 pm

    The love of my animals is the only thing that keeps me going sometimes. Taking care of them and treating them the way I wished the world would treat me almost always brings me out of my ‘funk’…even if only temporarily. I have lost many of my animals over the years. It hurts my heart. I ache to be with them again. That will never go away and I am sorry to say, the pain does not lessen over time. But, I don’t want it to. It just shows how special each and every one was and that I have the capacity to love and be loved. Save an animal off of death row. Love them like you want to be loved. In return, they will love you back …unconditionally. Or volunteer at an animal sanctuary. Most of those animal angels have been through some kind of hell, just like you – they need to be around humans they can trust. Whatever you choose to do, I hope you get the relief you so deserve.

    Reply
    • 11. Jamie  |  June 24, 2015 at 12:33 pm

      Yes.

      Reply
  • 12. danielle brunson  |  June 24, 2015 at 12:27 pm

    Hi sweetie you have to take it one day at a time you mentioned school do that another thing you are such an awesome writer there are so many foster kids you can help and mentor try looking into that I will most def keep u in my prayers I see so much potential in you but you have to be the one to go out and get it. I don’t care how much meds you take or therapy u seek you have to be the one to take those steps in making yourself happy. I wish you the best and keep your head up!!!

    Reply
  • 13. helen hewett  |  June 24, 2015 at 12:37 pm

    LT are you interested in trying something? Do you have a copy of the Bible go to the middle of the Bible. You will find a book called the Psalms there is quite a few of them start at the beginning and read through some are short,some are long just read through one by one regardless how you feel or what is happening in your life. Try and do this I know it is going to be useful. Obviously not in one sitting and not necessarily one a day just read through one by one. Please try and give it a go I think you will be mildly surprised.

    Reply
  • 14. Loreley  |  June 24, 2015 at 1:41 pm

    I hear you… what you write resonates with me…

    Reply
    • 15. Linda  |  June 24, 2015 at 2:50 pm

      It resonates with me too. Medication and therapy helped. Trying to be gentle with myself helped. Be easy on yourself LT.

      Reply
  • 16. momma2abby  |  June 24, 2015 at 2:57 pm

    I think you’ve figured a large number of things out frankly– even if you are still trying to figure out more. So I personally wouldn’t move and start over. You might want to try more art. I wonder if you would like visual journaling. In a lot of ways you do it here already because pictures are a big part of this blog, but I was thinking more in terms of a paper journal and some markers- lots of doodles– or even just filling a page with anything. My daughter has DID and she has done some of her best art with her camera. I have wondered if it worked the best because she switches a lot and only has to be present for a second or so to take a photo. I don’t know for sure. Anyway things like doodling are scientifically shown to be very calming for the brain.

    I used to crochet because I just liked the way it made my brain feel. Nothing all that fancy– I can stitch super well but it wasn’t as much fun if I had to think about it all that much. Anyway, right now I can’t do much of that because of some nerve damage in my arm. So I got these knitting hoops. Much easier on my arm. Pretty simple to use. Scientists say handwork helps produce seratonin which generally is lacking when you are depressed.

    Reply
  • 17. bluejuliej  |  June 24, 2015 at 3:03 pm

    I think you stay and keep hanging in there. And maybe consider getting another dog and/or cat from a shelter. You were a terrorist fix pet parent and there’s likely a shelter pup who really does need *you*.

    I got my dog from a local rescue and he’s given me a reason to stay alive during a long and awful and still ongoing depressive spell.

    Reply
  • 18. jpirog2013  |  June 24, 2015 at 3:11 pm

    I haven’t had depression but I know it can really be debilitating to someone suffering it. Of the list of things you mention above, I would really, really recommend going to college. Taking math, science, English, meeting other people, talking to professors, going to college events, working your schedule to fit in work, exercise, etc., could make you feel alive.

    Think about ten years from now, and the difference your life could be if you made a few changes such as the ones you mention. I know your mind is telling you to do nothing. Try to be stronger than that, it’s clear you have a lot of people here who believe in you.

    Reply
  • 19. Brenda  |  June 24, 2015 at 3:30 pm

    Hi,

    I wish you could be my friend. Why? Because I need a good friend. I see you as a really great person that has core principles that are kind. I see you making great choices such as not getting into alcohol or drugs to deal with problems but to deal with it by journaling, going to a job on a regular basis, seeing someone to talk through issues. You know you have issues. That right there is the biggest thing to realize! If you know about them, you can slowly deal with them. You love animals and are kind to them. That shows who you are a lot. You are smart. More then smart, you have common sense. All these things and more are reasons I would like to have you as a friend. I don’t take the time to read a lot of blogs, yours is the only one in fact. It’s because you are real, you put it all out there, even if it’s not put out there for people face to face, you still put it out there. So I feel if you could be real like that here, for a true friend, you would also tell me when I’m being a jerk. And not many people have friends that can do that. Just sayin’.

    Reply
    • 20. onemorewithus  |  June 24, 2015 at 5:05 pm

      Aww, I love this comment! Very sweet and it brings wonderful words to our LT!

      Reply
  • 21. onemorewithus  |  June 24, 2015 at 5:25 pm

    LT, lots of good words here.
    The thing about depression is that it puts you in a fog of hopelessness. While you are aware of what is out there, the fog holds you down. No matter what direction you look at, all you can see is sadness and dead ends. It is really hard to withstand it, and one cannot simply snap out of it.
    Some people get into depression for
    a time, while others must fight it through the whole life.
    Either way, depression is real.
    It needs to be fought, yes, but also accepted.
    You do not need to feel guilty or that you have waisted your life. You don’t need to be like other people or pretend you don’t struggle.
    This is your life story. You had to endure so much! Most people would not have made it, but you did. You were cheated, betrayed, used, abused. You were hurt in profound ways… So give yourself the right to feel and grieve. And if moving around is a way to cope with it all, then do it. If you are tired of moving, then don’t.
    Whatever you choose, that’s completely ok.
    The only thing I would encourage you to do ( because I have entitled myself as your friend and a friend must give advices 😄) is that you do keep reaching out both through this blog and personally with people around you.
    We love hearing from you and we want you to stick around us. You are our LT 💗

    Reply
  • 22. Danielle  |  June 24, 2015 at 6:47 pm

    It might not feel this way, but this is quite a positive post for you LT. Almost like “Well I’m still alive, and I can’t stop being depressed, but what CAN I do?”. I’m really proud of you! Maybe something you could try would be to focus on figuring out the things you like. I won’t say “things you enjoy”, because that might be harder for you to be clear on at the moment. But from what I’ve noticed, you really love animals, and food, and you used to love cycling but maybe aren’t as confident about it as you once were. Just focus on those three things and maybe you will be able to bring more things you like into your life. Maybe you can volunteer with animals, and start biking off road, and join in with a little old lady baking group. Maybe doing those things for a while might make you want to go to culinary school, or train to be a vet nurse, or a pet groomer. And then if you do decide to move to a new place you can do reasearch and find a city where there is great animal welfare, lots of cyclist friendly facilities and a great culinary or veterinary school! One little step at a time, focused on the things you REALLY like, might help you answer all your questions 🙂

    Reply
  • 23. Barbara  |  June 24, 2015 at 7:45 pm

    Awww.. L.T. I love reading your blog and you are an amazing writer. Perhaps you could write a novel about your experiences in the foster system. we have an author in the UK called Cathy Glass who writes about the various children she has looked after over the years as a foster carer. Perhaps you can write from the foster child perspective All you have written here about your experiences would make a great novel.
    And… If you ever want to escape for a while..you are more than welcome to hop on a plane and come stay with us in the UK. I don’t work, I currently foster three children and I have all the time in the world just to listen and talk x x x x

    Reply
  • 24. RFL  |  June 24, 2015 at 9:47 pm

    Maybe your medications need to be adjusted or changed. Have you thought of that? Some people have to try out a number of medications before finding the right one.

    Reply
  • 25. raisingagodlyboy  |  June 24, 2015 at 10:32 pm

    GOD is the answer, all you have to do is ask him to come in to your life. For God so loved the world that he gave his only begotten Son that whomever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life. John 3:16

    Reply
  • 26. s00147954  |  June 24, 2015 at 10:46 pm

    I’m sorry LT, depression is an awful thing to have to deal with. I suffer from ongoing depression also, although obviously for very different reasons to you. Something that helps me is volunteering – it stops me from ruminating, and helps when I have a lot of time on my hands.

    I wish I could say something that would help even a little, but the problem is that I don’t know myself how to ‘instafix’ it. Just know that even though I’m just a stranger on your blog, I count you as my friend 🙂 stay strong LT

    Reply
  • 27. CMC  |  June 24, 2015 at 11:00 pm

    Hey LT,
    I’m glad what I said resonated with you, I really hope it brings you closer to happiness and excitement in your life.

    If you want to go back to school what you could do is go to your public library and see if they have one of those big books that list all the careers. You can read a summaries of jobs and see if anything looks interesting. Or you could just jump in and start your gen.eds and talk to the counselor about helping you find something you enjoy.
    What does the perfect life look like to you? Don’t worry about if it’s possible for you or if you’re worthy, just decide what a good life is. For me it’s a house in the city

    Eating better is really important but it’s hard when junk food brings so much comfort. And you deserve whatever comfort you can find in life so don’t feel bad about choosing it. Maybe try starting with vitamins? I personally found that cod liver oil gave me a little bit more energy, might be worth a shot.

    Have you ever thought of buying a house? I don’t know how much you make, or what your credit is like but in some areas it can be cheaper than renting. You can put down roots and have a sense of stability and it seems like you need that. Plus, it might be cathartic for you to buy a dump, tear it to pieces and fix it up so it’s your own.

    As for the self loathing thing, I’ve been trying to think of what might work for you because I wanted to give you more to go on than what I did (faking it/ saying one nice thing about myself everyday).
    I think a good place to start would be giving yourself some credit.
    You’ve been through a hell no one would wish on their worst enemy, and you’ve come out a little broken and bloodied but you’re still standing and that is something to be proud of.
    And you would have every right to hate anyone and everyone involved in this screwed up system but you chose to reach out instead, and by doing so you’re protecting children from the agony you went through.

    Life hasn’t passed you by, you’re just showing up fashionably late. And you’re not the only one, a lot of people get a little lost in the world and need to take extra time to get where they want to be.
    CMC

    Reply
    • 28. CMC  |  June 25, 2015 at 1:53 am

      Whoops, that third paragraph didn’t get finished… Sorry about that.
      Decide what the best type of life is, then figure out how you can get there. I want a house in the city, lots of kids, and to travel. I chose a major that will lead me to a career I’ll enjoy and will allow me to go abroad occasionally, while paying well enough for me to have that house, and be comfortable financially. I have zero drive for biologically related children so I plan on adopting or fostering.
      So what’s an ideal life in your mind? If you could create a different life for yourself what would it look like? Worry about how to get to it afterwords.

      Reply
  • 29. sageplant  |  June 24, 2015 at 11:05 pm

    Good way of expressing the inside thoughts of people/children that have gone through hell and more and are still working it out moment by moment. I would have a hard time putting all my thoughts together the way you just did! Very clear thinking and organized with good direction and stuff. How about one new project? It could be whatever…but challenge yourself…your worth it. I was listening to Gabor Mate again..he has tons of compassion and works the would that have been hurt and more. Well, I like his thinking…ok, have a good evening…

    Reply
  • 30. Mark Gaylord  |  June 25, 2015 at 7:55 am

    My wife and I have 5 daughters, 2 were born to us (eldest in her mid 20s about to get married, the next is entering college in the fall), we were the legal guardian of one who is now on her own (her choice) but in contact, and 2 foster daughters who we are adopting after a horrible and long court process (nearly 6 years) next month.

    So if you don’t mind here is a little advice from an old Dad, that I would and do share with my daughters:

    – As said above look for things you are grateful for, Even if they are small, a beautiful flower, light in a window, anything. Try to see what is good and beautiful. You are a very talented writer. Your use of graphics is very good, you have a very good eye.

    – Again as said above volunteer. There are several great reasons for this:
    1) you will see you are not alone.
    2) I always tell people, if you want to find GREAT friends find a charitable group and volunteer. These are the people not focussed on themselves and they are the people who will give you the shirts off their backs.
    3) Self is a black hole, it can not be easily filled . By helping others you will see positive change in them and that is satisfying. Giving others Hope is infectious, as is kindness and Love (Love is not what the world calls it either)
    4) Self esteem isn’t given, it is earned by accomplishment. Accomplish in others, it fills the black hole!
    5) it helps to look beyond ourselves
    6) you get more than you give, I certainly have.

    – Learn to laugh both with and at yourself. Frustration and anger can be habits that are hard to break. We all do dumb, odd, weird things at times. There is humor in life. Even people we respect have their foibles. Respectfully seeing the humor in life is a good thing. Perfection is a target we can’t quite hit/reach in anything we do, but it is worth the trip and the view gets better as you get closer!

    – As others have said find God. It is both hard and easy. Ask (pray), look, watch, and see (look and see are not the same!). He is not as distant as you may think and/or feel.

    – Even if you don’t feel it understand you are valuable. Just contemplate how many, even while distant, care and are interested in you! You have greatly helped me understand some of the emotions and trials of being in foster care and the issues you face. Others face the same and I am a better Dad because of you. My girls are better off because of you. And I am sure others are better off because of you. I found this blog from a newsletter from my counties Dept. of Family services published strongly suggesting foster parents should read you. You have a huge impact on many people, you ARE valuable even if you can not see more than the very tip of the iceberg.

    – Love. Love is more than an emotion it is a decision. It requires persistence, dedication, care, hope. It is not sex, it is not just warm fuzzy feelings, it is far more and usually is not those at all. It may require trust and that is hard! (as I’m sure you know far better than I.). The best definition I know for Love is “Love is the active participation in the will of God”. The opposite of love is not hate, it is “the active non-participation in the will of God”. I could elaborate further, but just consider that for now.

    – learn to make you weaknesses strengths. You like food, then cook! Share what you cook. No friends around, then find someone who is homeless and let them try some. Ask for advice, and appreciate constructive criticism (could use a little more/less salt etc.). Wisdom comes from many places.

    – Know wisdom is better than intelligence. Strive to be wise. Knowledge can be very good depending what you do with it, good or bad. Wisdom is always better.

    – You have friends here, maybe you can allow some to meet you on your terms, let them meet you for lunch. You might see more of the good you do. You may find that great family are not those whom you live with or have in the past, but those who care for and about you.

    – Don’t focus on to many things at once, that is overwhelming. Work on improving just a little at a time, but do it every day at least a little. It will snowball, but takes time. I teach target shooting. There are only a few things that make for a great shot, (breathing, body position, sight alignment, sight picture, muscle control, trigger pull, follow through) but you can only really work on one at a time. And that is how you get better at all of them. Switch off at times on any given area. Maybe work on being more punctual. Maybe keeping the sink clearer etc. What ever just focus for a bit on different areas. And like a target shooter keep an old target and compare with new ones, and you will see the gradual improvement. Look as see things you can tangibly change, and note especially the non-tangible changes.

    I hope these help. You are stronger than you realize and you truly are a great help and inspiration to many.

    Thank you.

    Reply
  • 31. angelamarshall2013  |  June 25, 2015 at 8:23 am

    Good Morning LT,
    I agree with what Mark said and really encourage you to not focus on so many things at once. Perhaps identify 1 positive thing that you want to do – today. Maybe have a salad for lunch or dinner or read 1 chapter in a book (nothing serious or heavy). Also maybe start every morning with a mantra that you can repeat throughout the day – I will be the best that I can be or today I am choosing to be happier than I was yesterday. I think taking one day/one step at a time is a place to begin.

    Chronic depression is hard, but I believe you can make it out of that heavy dark cloud.

    Take care LT

    Reply
  • 32. mv49496  |  June 25, 2015 at 11:03 am

    Good for you, LT. The options listed sound good and you’re right moving in a positive direction will help. The quickest results will be sleep, vitamin D, daily exercise, and more non-processed (whole fruits and veg) food. As you feel more energized, you can take some life steps. Glad you have your readers in your life. MV Date: Wed, 24 Jun 2015 14:21:37 +0000 To: mv_49496@hotmail.com

    Reply
  • 33. songsforsilences  |  June 25, 2015 at 1:33 pm

    LT, this is such a thoughtfully written, mature post. Your level of self-awareness is really impressive. I just think you are such a bright and brave person. I’m sorry that I don’t have any answers about being happy and not hating yourself – but I hope you find strength in the fact that we in the blogosphere want you to be happy and think you are valuable and lovable. 🙂

    Reply
  • 34. Tina  |  June 25, 2015 at 2:26 pm

    Hello .I just read your blog today . which I enjoy reading I am a single mom and a foster mom of 18 year i have loved each and every kid that has come in my house i have learned so much from all my kids. reading your blog helps me to always thinking about things in a different way veiw .i think your a beauiful writer. you have share you gift with so many people and touch so many life’s by your blogs.i feel like you don’t give yourself enough credit .sometimes we are our own worst enemy. I have suffered with depression off and on – and my health changed over night about 2 years ago so my health issues has changed my life and has made my depression worst .I can no longer do things I have always done for myself and my kids. I have body pain all the time I can no longer do things around my house and in my yard like I used to I can’t do my job my whole life changed overnight their been so many days where I just felt like you know I just don’t want to go on .no more the struggle is so tough and depression holds me down I look around at all the things I used to do and that no longer my body allows me to do..a friend of mine said somethat that really sticks to me. (( he said dont force on what you cant do force on what you can do )) your life has changed. Be kind to yourself. It help me alot to think about it that way .I was getting so colt up in thinking about things I couldnt do and that made my depression so much worst because that all I thought about . instead of looking at things I could do..somedays are harder then other but I try to shift my force. What can I do ? Look for the posstive. Some days its small I get up showered .fixed my hair. Or days its a littlr more You are in charge of your happiness. Sometimes we dont have clue what the hell does that mean huh . Sometimes it mean takeing changes, stepping outside our conforted zone .baby steps .learning self love..Change the force. Dont let depression be your force and who you are. This is going to sound silly to .25 years ago I got divorced I married young I am a care giver.but I never realize till have my divorce I never took care of me.or learn to love myself .I had to learn a different way of life from my pass I never recieved the love growing up.so I had to learn to love me . tough job love me what does that mean and how do I love myself and give myself love hum ..I join support group .I looked in the mirror every day I said I love you.your beauiful at first I thought it was dum.but I took a a challenge at one of those support groups of 30 days of doing that go into the mirror a couple times a day and telling myself I am beautiful I am worthy and I love you and trust me when you do that every day you start believing that because you are a beautiful person don’t define yourself from your past or force on things you cant do ..look at things you can do.sorry this is so long but I hope you find something positive in it..

    Reply
  • 35. leachristina65  |  June 27, 2015 at 10:12 pm

    Hi LT,

    Dr. Val is great, but maybe adding something else to your therapeutic regimen could help.

    Look into a technique called Focusing. Here is a link to see if there’s a certified focusing therapist in your area.

    http://www.focusing.org/trainers_search.asp

    Reply
  • 36. ritalee8383  |  June 28, 2015 at 1:55 am

    LT I read your post the day you posted it and I just didn’t know what to say. I truly care for you and am deeply affected by everything that you’ve been through. I wanted to pull something out of my heart to encourage you but couldn’t come up with anything that didn’t sound trite. What can you say to someone that has experienced such heartache from such a young age? I struggle with some of the things you mentioned but not all. I can’t begin to tell you this would work or try that. I haven’t a clue as to what you should do. But I will tell you this. You matter. Your story and your gift to express yourself and what you have been through have touched people. There is a purpose in that. I hope one day that you come to realize just what a wonderful soul you are. I really mean that. Despite the trauma that you have endured you have created a platform to make a difference. In your time of brokenness and grief you have reached outward. That’s a rarity and that makes you someone to be treasured.

    A diamond begins as just a lump of coal. Through the pressure of external forces it becomes something extraordinary. That’s how I see you LT.

    Reply
  • 37. Tina  |  June 28, 2015 at 6:55 pm

    Lt.. your blog has been a blessing to me.. I am a newly liscensed foster parent who has yet to have her first placement. I have four kids of my own and my husband and I just want to do our best to show God’s love to the hurting kids in our community. Can I just say that your blog posts are soo incredibly well written that it seems obvious to me that you should write a book. I am so sorry you are struggling with depression and the loss of your beloved pet.. I have struggled a bit with very minimal depression so my heart goes out to you. I will echo what others have said; doing things for others brings happiness.. God really does love you… even though it may not seem that way when life has been so incredibly cruel to you. We live in a broken world full of sin sorrow and pain. but this is because we are all sinful and broken people who make wrong choices that sometimes harm others. God loves you. the Bible says He knows the number of hairs on your head and He cares each time a little sparrow falls. I am going to say a prayer for you and I hope you will talk to God and tell Him your hurts and all about your pain.. He loves you and He is listening. Thanks so much for sharing your story. It is so helpful to someone like myself who genuinely wants to help; but is honestly totally clueless about how truly awful life has been for kids in care and how to help them. Hugs…

    Reply
  • 38. mommyof6  |  June 29, 2015 at 11:50 am

    L.T.I have no answers for you only complements. Despite everthing, you are truly AMAZING. I wish I could erase your pain and the pain of all foster children, including my 3 adopted daughers. I just wanted you to know that yesterday you were in my toughts all day. I took my kids to the movie theater to watch inside out. It hit me hard. I know it is just a kids movie but the only thing I could see was how all those “memories and feelings” affected my girls, you and many other children. Take care Amazing girl.
    hugs

    Reply
  • 39. Ashley  |  June 29, 2015 at 3:57 pm

    You’re truly a sweet girl and I just read your blog today, you’ve fought hard and you deserve a simple life but not all of us can get what we want. You’re extraordinary I hope you know that, never doubt yourself because you’re outright amazing. I can fill you with compliments but instead I want to encourage you to take a deep breath,relax and try to focus on positive things in life. It may be a bad day but remember that it can never be a bad life. Learn to live to the fullest. Don’t let your past define you and what you’re future will be. Make choices in life you know you won’t regret, moving doesn’t sound to great of an idea, try to stay settled and don’t focus on so many things at once.

    Reply
  • 40. Beeblebrox  |  June 29, 2015 at 10:42 pm

    Hi LT,
    I see everyone is telling you to try different things. So here’s mine: DBT (dialectical behavioral therapy). Dr. Marsha Linehan has put it together over the past 20 years. It’s a series of skills you can learn to help you regulate your emotions, tolerate/ handle difficult emotions, resolve interpersonal conflicts, and figure out what your real goals are (she calls it “building a life worth living.”) She has/had borderline personality disorder and was suicidal. She invented DBT to help treat suicidal patients who also had lots of other problems and whose lives were in constant crisis. The skills are usually taught in a group and so it probably wouldn’t be too expensive. She was profiled in the New York Times’ series about highly successful people with serious mental illnesses.
    There’s also a workbook. I would mail it to you if you had a post office box!

    Sending good thoughts in your direction.

    Reply
  • 41. Foster Mom in Training  |  July 1, 2015 at 12:03 am

    LT,

    You are not alone in these thoughts and feelings. I have asked myself many of the same questions. I have suffered through bouts of depression. You are right, it’ super hard. I equate it to being stuck in a deep pit and trying to claw my way out toward the light. I’ve managed to claw my way out and stay out. I’m really proud of myself for that.

    Additionally, I had to start making choices, taking risks, even baby steps, to move my life forward. I moved across the country. I took a class at a community college to see if I could handle it. Once I survived it, and passed with a lot of hard work, I started taking more classes. I also took a job working with kids, my chosen field, to see if I really liked them well enough to devote my life to educating them. Now, I teach middle school. Lol.

    Each little step I took built my confidence. Each little step helped me dig my way out of that dark hole. What do you have to lose by taking a baby step? You can always go back to sitting on the couch if you need a break. 😀

    I get the feeling you are ready to start clawing your way out of the hole. I’m here to cheer you on as you pull yourself out. Even when it feels impossible, don’t give up. Just take that small baby step, that small risk. You will start to build your confidence, too. The reward is so worth the risk. (((Hugs))). I believe in you. I KNOW you are strong enough to do this if you choose to do it. 😄

    Reply
  • 42. Bronwyn  |  July 3, 2015 at 11:03 pm

    Something with art.
    Something with animals.
    Something with writing.
    Maybe you can combine the three and eventually help foster kids.
    I agree about a day a week at the SPCA. When you’re helping someone else you automatically feel “purpose” and worth.

    Reply
  • 44. msullpa  |  August 1, 2015 at 5:14 pm

    Hi LT,
    I ‘aged out’ of foster care 25 years ago, only we didn’t call it that then, it was more like getting ‘kicked out’ of the system. I just discovered your blog, I wish I had found this sooner. Not much has changed with the system in 25 years. I fought with depression for decades. I read many self help books which never really seemed to help. I was in counseling for many years, which helped a little. Unfortunately, I didn’t really have access to the internet back then either, which probably would have helped. I think the biggest thing that finally helped me overcome depression, was to put myself in a position where I could start helping others. I stopped playing the role of victim. For me, I became a dental assistant and was able to help people ‘fix their smile’. When I saw how happy my patients were, when my patients cried tears of joy, it made me smile and cry too. This was very healing for me. I am still not quick to smile myself, and I have to remind myself to smile because its the social thing to do and its what people expect of me, but I no longer feel depressed. I no longer have a black cloud hovering and following me everywhere I go, I no longer spontaneously cry for no reason. I can find joy and beauty in things around me. My biggest issue I am still dealing with today is my anger. I have yet to find a way to beat this, and it really sucks. My anger issues are better controlled these days. I have a career and anger is not professional or ‘socially acceptable’. I no longer go ‘berserk’ but I definitely have a temper. Part of it is probably a need to control things in my life, as you know, foster kids have little control of their situation unless we engaged in some form of manipulation. Having pets is always healing. Foster kids do not have much physical contact with others, usually because they simply don’t want it but is so important for healing. I have two cats who love me unconditionally and that is a beautiful thing that humans can never really accomplish. They are so soft and I love it when they purr. I agree with other bloggers here that maybe rescuing (adopting) and having another pet in your life will fill in a void in your heart and start the process of healing.
    Stay strong.

    Reply
  • 45. Pam  |  September 12, 2015 at 12:00 pm

    LT: I suffered from depression for over 30 years, took meds for 15 years, and am finally depression-free for the last two years.

    I once wrote that having depression is like waking up already submerged to my neck in mud, trying to move carefully out of it before the sun comes out to bake me solidly in it. I wrote eleven pages on my reality of depression, and wish I could share it here so people might understand what it is like. Medication changes over those years were not working and I nearly died in the very process of getting better. But I did.get.better. While at times I still feel slightly fragile, I am feeling completely whole these days.

    Steps I took:

    1. I loved soda, drank 40-60 ounces a day and when I wasn’t drinking that I drank iced tea. I hated water; it actually made me sick on my stomach. Stopped drinking soda completely, replaced it with lots of water (ug) and dropped my ice tea down to 1-2 cups of hot tea a day using Green Tea.
    2. Began exercising on a treadmill I bought (I couldn’t stand for people to see me out in the real world but in time was able to take walks outside).
    3. Made a plan to wash my dishes every.single.day. (You would have to read the 11 page document to understand.)
    4. Began finding a closer relationship with Jesus, reading the Bible even when I could not understand the words. (His Words heal us whether we understand them or not.)

    There are more steps I took that I do not feel I should put on here because a person might take it as permission to do that which I did. But I am now over two years med-free and more importantly depression-free. I am now living a full life, can go out in public again, interact with other people.

    I believe 100% that Jesus healed me from depression, but I had to take steps towards that healing.

    Reply

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I know that means you can't take my writing without my permission. If you do, something can happen.
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