Tuesday, February 26, 2013

Why I Asked for Support

A few days ago I wrote a post explaining that I was in a dark and difficult place and asking for prayers and happy thoughts in my behalf.  I am so grateful to everyone who responded and all those who offered prayers, happy thoughts, positive energy, and love.  I believe greatly in the power of all of these.  I have felt lifted in so many ways.  While I do not believe I am out of the woods just yet, I am improved.

It was a rough month.  Two back to back episodes of PTSD followed by a major depression, all while experiencing a new health struggle.  It was a seriously dark place I was in.  And, as is the nature of depression, it was a little too comfortable.

But there was a tickling in the back of my mind that said, "It doesn't have to be this way.  You can be happy.  You like being happy."  All of those things are difficult to remember when I'm in that dark place.

And asking for help was hard.  I grew up in a home where we were taught fierce independence.  We help others.  We don't need help.  We don't discuss our problems with others.  We don't complain.  We suck it up and get back to work.  We push through it.  I lived that way for many years.

That way is a lie!  I want to scream it from the rooftops.  That is not what this life is meant to be!  In our society, independence is praised and revered.  But independence is only a stepping stone.  True mental health is interdependence.  This needs to be said more.  This needs to be taught in our schools and homes and churches.  True mental health (and spiritual health) is interdependence.  Interdependence means we do everything for ourselves that we possibly can and ask for help when we need it.  It means we know enough to see when we're over our heads or in unfamiliar territory.  And we ask for help for those things we can't do for ourselves.

As a religious person, I believe that independence is a beautiful lie to keep us from relying on God and turning to each other.  A lie focused on the importance of self.  I believe we are meant to be interdependent with our fellow man AND with God, not just one or the other.

One strong person can do a lot.  Many strong people, interconnected, can change the world!  No wonder the powers of evil want to stop it.

Those are the underlying reasons I asked for help.  Mostly it was because I was in such a bad way and needed to feel the strength of others.  I needed to not feel so alone.  I needed to see the goodness of the incredible people in my life (including my cyber-life).

And it was because I want to practice what I preach.  I want to know when my friends and family are struggling.  I want to be a support to them.  I want to pray for them.  I want to reach out to them.  I want to tell them I love them when they need it the most.  I want to hurt with them.  I want to cry for them.  And I can't do any of those things if I don't know they are not okay.

It would be hypocritical of me to ask others to tell me when their world is dark if I am not willing to do the same.

My world is brighter today.  My burden is lighter.  Because of the light and strength offered freely by others.  Thank you so much for that.  And thank you to those who open their hearts and share with me when they aren't okay.  You are brave and strong and I am better for the time we have together.

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Blogger Bonnie said...

Big hug.

February 26, 2013 at 12:21 PM  
Blogger 2busy said...

So glad for you that your world and life is looking just a little be brighter.

February 26, 2013 at 1:20 PM  
Blogger MaggieJo said...

Thanks for being there for me in my dark places. Grateful you're doing better.

February 26, 2013 at 1:41 PM  
Blogger The Dose of Reality said...

Glad that you're doing a bit better. *hugs*

February 26, 2013 at 2:02 PM  
Blogger Catherine Gacad said...

I feel stronger reading your post. Thank you for writing this.

February 26, 2013 at 2:07 PM  
Blogger Melissa G. said...

Sending you lots of continued positivity and love and I'm hopeful your lightened burden will remain light.

February 26, 2013 at 5:26 PM  
Blogger Rubye Jack said...

Ah, the comfortability of depression. :)

I'm happy to hear you're better. I also work at being independent, but you're so right about interdependence.

February 26, 2013 at 9:50 PM  
Blogger Ugochi said...

The reason God created us all is so that we can support one another. And I am glad you find that Robin, also glad that you do not allow isolation to keep you from sharing and receiving help from others. So glad you are doing better.
God bless you!

February 27, 2013 at 4:05 AM  
Blogger Tamara Camera said...

You're brave and strong. And seeing even the possibility of happiness is so incredible. Great job and wishes for ever brighter days.

February 27, 2013 at 11:10 AM  
Blogger agapewoman said...

Remember Robin, God doesn't want us to do it alone, he wants us to take it all to him. I know it's hard but I hope to encourage you and continue to pray for you.

February 27, 2013 at 1:00 PM  
Blogger Vicki M. Taylor said...

Robin. My heart and prayers go out to you. I know what you're going through. I have Bipolar Disorder, depression PTSD, OCD, GAD, SAD, and so much more. I have a website at http://mybalancedlife.info that you might find useful. Plus I twitter about bipolar at @BipolarBlogs and I'm always available to chat offline if you want. I don't want you to suffer or ever be alone. I went to the darkest place possible when I was at my deepest despair and attempted suicide. I was lucky. I want to help you find the light. WIth God's love. Have a blessed day.

February 28, 2013 at 8:30 AM  
Anonymous Mothering From Scratch said...

{Melinda} I'm glad you are doing better, too. God didn't intend for us to walk these difficult roads alone. I always appreciate your transparency.

February 28, 2013 at 9:25 AM  
Blogger Julie Moore said...

So glad you're in a better place now!

Thanks for stopping by my blog on my SITS Day, too! I appreciate it! :)

February 28, 2013 at 9:48 AM  
Anonymous Crystal said...

Sending you many, many hugs! Glad you are doing a bit better today. :)

March 1, 2013 at 8:46 AM  
Blogger Betty Manousos said...

so glad to hear that you life starts to look a little bit brighter!

sending positive thoughts your way.


March 2, 2013 at 1:52 AM  
Blogger Homemakersdaily.com said...

So sorry you've been through that. I'm going through some bad stuff with a family member. She's been up and down but is in a dark place right now. I know it's really, really, really hard. I'm glad you're seeing light again.

I so agree that it's all about interdependence. We have to help each other! Again, glad you're doing better.

Visiting from SITS.

March 2, 2013 at 7:37 AM  
Blogger Shari Lynne @ www.faithfilledfoodformoms.com said...

Robin..what a beautiful post..I too grew up in a house where you just pulled yourself up by the bootstraps and shut your mouth..or else :( I love how you talk about your faith and dependence on God..even when things aren't perfect. Umm which they never are :) I will pray for you and I know that you will be a blessing to many others as you continue to share your beautiful story..it is beautiful you know!!
Blessings to you and have a great weekend!

March 2, 2013 at 8:47 AM  
Anonymous Chris Carter said...

I looked for your post in hopes you would be giving an update, and here it is!! The power of prayer is truly amazing. Keep on finding strength and light in Him.

March 2, 2013 at 8:55 AM  
Blogger Michell Pulliam said...

Awesome! So glad you're doing better!!;-) I can relate, I'm just getting to the point where I'm finally asking for help from others. One reason for my change was the death of my mother. She was much sicker than anyone knew, but because she never wanted to burden people with what she was going through...she didn't, of course it was too late! Thank you for sharing this...may it help us all to stop thinking we can do it all ALONE. Have a blessed weekend!

March 2, 2013 at 3:01 PM  
Blogger Jeanine Tribley said...

Hi Robin,

Glad to hear you are feeling a little better....you def have a forum of supportive friends on this Blog for sure. We have all been through "something". I left a job as a General Manager of a hotel in September last year as I happened to do a blood pressure test one day (I called in paramedics to do standard checks on the staff) - it was 160/110 and all day it was like that and would not go down! I never, ever had high blood pressure and after many tests, my Doc said "it seems you are too stressed out at that job, if you can, you should leave it" so I did.

I feel as if I am on God's path, not my own. Reach in with Faith and know there is a rainbow at the end of all of this, and stay strong!

Sending prayers,


March 2, 2013 at 6:14 PM  
Blogger Kate said...

I'm sorry to hear you've been in a dark place so pleased to hear you reached out and asked for some help. As you say independence is good but we all need to know when we need to ask for a helping hand through the dark. I'm not a big talker when it comes to problems but found writing them down on my blog and reading what friends say helps so much. your newest follower. Isn't amazing the support we can find through our blogs and our virtual communities.

Over from SITS (bit late)

Kate The Tales of Me

March 3, 2013 at 4:12 AM  
Blogger Sorta Southern Single Mom said...

Oh I'm so glad you found the support you needed.

March 3, 2013 at 8:08 AM  
Blogger Khlo√© Belle Gadson said...

Happy Sharefest!!
And BIG cyber hugs to you....!!


March 3, 2013 at 8:52 AM  
Blogger Carli Alice said...

It takes a stronger person to ask for help. I'm glad you're feeling better.

March 3, 2013 at 9:41 AM  
Blogger Organized Island said...

I am so happy that your world is brighter. It is so true about support of others that can lift a person up. Please know that you are in my thoughts for more brighter days ahead!

March 3, 2013 at 12:33 PM  
Blogger Savvy WorkingGal said...

This is such a powerful smart post. It showcases how far you've come. Knowing when to ask for help is a sign of true strength. Hopefully things will continue to improve in the coming weeks.

March 3, 2013 at 4:37 PM  

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