When we check our depression level, and for me my anxiety, we may find ourselves deeply distressed. I know when I have locked myself into a single bubble for a long time, I yearn for love. It isn’t the kind of love we feel from our family or the people in our lives that we know love and support as it is unconditional love. A love we can count on every minute whenever we need it.
A dog. I’ll let the cat people figure this out for themselves. All of my life I have had a dog until now. My little fur babies have always been the happy lap buddies that gave me a lot of love. Their presence in my life was so crucial to my well-being because I have never been in a genuinely loving relationship. My dogs touched me, licked me, slept in my lap, and were always happy to see me. They needed me to take care of them, and I need to do that, too. The conditions of my current living situation make having that love that I need a burden for others.
Take a look at your need for the love a pet can provide. Pets aren’t always a functional or wanted addition to a household, but the love they can offer is unmeasurable. Those of us suffering from mental illnesses find ourselves feeling alone even in a home filled with loved ones. They can be your special and therapeutic love. I need a dog. A fish isn’t very cuddly.
A higher power. Whatever your beliefs may be we all need to know that leaning on our own understanding of the big picture that is life in this universe is far too small. Depression causes our lives to be little. It isolates us. It magnifies pain, loneliness, and sadness. You already know that you are not in control or you would not be depressed. There is solace in getting to know and internalizing the concept of a higher power that is more than yourself. I call my higher power, God. I trust God is more significant than me and my illness. I sometimes struggle to let God have my needs, but God already has them. Your idea of a higher power is your own understanding. The same is true for me. My beliefs are rather complex and don’t fit in any box with a label. My knowledge of my higher power grows with every experience. I call myself a seeker. I have taken the fundamentals of Christianity and sought wisdom and truth from other cultures that align and increase my understanding of God. My God cannot fit in any box.
You may already have your own views of “God.” I appeal to you to call upon that unconditional love always. It does not matter how you see your higher power. It does matter that you look to your higher power to step out of the little world of depression. The saying, “No man is an island,” can inspire us to drain the lake we feel trapping us in depression. Look for ways to let your higher power take control and give it away. People would not take any part of your depression any more than you would want to give it to them, your higher power is willing to provide you with that unconditional love and take away your suffering. It’s not reasonable to think that fostering your spirituality will lift the burden of depression like a magical cure. Your work is letting go.
Peace be with you, my friends.