I have a renewed appreciation for peace of mind and lifestyle after dealing with depression. Even though I learned about the effective preventative methods in terms of depression in my graduate public health courses, I wasn’t prepared for a personal lesson with dealing with depression.
In my case, I was dealing with depression because I was in a toxic relationship with an individual. I felt hopeless, frustrated, and confused as to how I slipped into the state of depression. My mentality was intoxicated from the mental and emotional abuse I experienced in the relationship. Fully aware of my depression, I isolated myself because I was ashamed for others to see me in this manner. I was normally the person in my circle who would encourage others, but this time I needed help.
After a huge fight with that individual, I made a decision that I would fight through this and get out of the rut. Now, I had tried several times before, but this time, I had the right tools and team behind me.
First, I strengthened my relationship with God. I had to go back to my Creator to discover who He created me to be. After a while, I began to realize that God didn’t purpose for me to be abused and hurt. He wants me to have a happy and fulfilling life. It was time for me to live out the purpose that God had planned for me.
Secondly, I began attending therapy services, which I continue to this day. My therapist, Monica, and Sound Mind Counseling Services have truly helped me get back on the path towards my destiny. One of the most important lessons I learned was to focus on the truth. For nearly 7 years, I focused on the little bit of truth wrapped in deceit and lies. I needed to take time to discover the truth about the situation so that I could heal.
Next, I cut off the relationship. That was one of the hardest decisions that I had to make but was necessary for me to do. I needed to focus on me rather than trying to save a dead relationship. It was very difficult at first, but I learned to enjoy being alone and focusing on developing healthy relationships. Once that person was out of my life, I could work on my mental health and recovering from depression.
Lastly, I made the decision that I would share my story so that others won’t have to experience depression. I realize that there is a purpose to my pain.
Today, I use the tools I have learned in therapy along with my faith in God to keep me out of the rut to keep moving forward in my purpose. I know that you can break free from the bonds of depression because there were times when I wasn’t sure I could be free, but I am enjoying freedom now! You can make it!
Ashley Hill, MPH
College Success Coach