I was so depressed this morning that I called Mom. It's the same old thing that I have been dealing with for six years: not feeling a part of anything and envying everyone who is a part of anything. She didn't have any magic words for me, but I just needed to get some of the feelings out as they were coming to me. There was no way I could get through this day otherwise. So I said everything, as stupid as it was, and then I went back to bed and cried myself back to sleep.
The topic of the day in psychology was depression, believe it or not. Mr. Leech listed all these symptoms: over-reaction, frustration, difficulty in making decisions, frequent crying, self-deprecation, loss of self-esteem, moroseness, suicidal tendencies, insomnia or hypersomnia, loss of appetite, and a sense of hopelessness. Well, I had every one of them. I was definitely in a depression. And I was sitting next to Doug.
After psychology, we exited the building. "Food?" he asked.
"Of course," I said.
We started going toward the Haven.
"That was interesting to me," I said, "because it's something I have been dealing with lately."
We went to get our food and sat down. We talked about how the people who often notice a problem are the ones who are dealing with it themselves.
This morning I was telling Mom about how jealous I was of LaRhonda because her need appeared to be getting met, and mine didn't.
"Maybe," Mom said, "that's because they see an inner strength in you." She had said that to me before when I sang in church just before I left. "I saw strength in you." I am so glad that other people can see that in me because usually I don't. I know that there are things about me that only others can see, and I am glad that Mom opened my eyes to one of them. That doesn't make it any easier for me to carry this need, but it does help me to concentrate on using that strength to get through this time.
Then I started thinking about other people seeing that in me. I hope that strength is one of the things they see in me. Pastor Duncan said in one of his sermons that we affect at least six people every day, and why not affect them with good things? When I met Amy Gaither, she had no idea that she would make a lasting impression on me. She probably was not thinking about giving me anything, but she did. I saw a strength and passion in her that I want to make a part of my life. What am I giving without thinking to the people around me? If I affect people as easily as Amy affected me, then I affect many more than six people each day.
Yesterday in Sunday school Bill Gaither talked about Joni Eareckson. "She was a wonderful athlete," he told us, "and one day she was in a terrible accident that paralyzed her from the neck down. She would never have chosen that for herself, but it was the beginning of something great. Because of this accident, people listen to her."
the depression I have been carrying with me lately is the beginning of something great. Doug said that because of his depression he will be able to understand someone else whom he encounters in his ministry somewhere down the road. I know that, and that person will listen to him because he has been there. I trust that mine will serve the same purpose. If my great-great-granddaughter reads my journal someday and finds hope in knowing that someone has felt alone before her, then my life is worth living. Even if the sliver of hope that I give someone is not given until centuries later, then my life is worth living. Randy stonehill sings in his song, "Save the Children," "And Christ would have gone to the cross just to save one child from being lost." That is why I am still here. I have no way of knowing who will be affected by the way I deal with this problem, so I had better choose a good way.
One thing I talked to Tana, my counselor, about was something someone said to me a couple of weeks ago. She said she didn't think that people were being this way to me because I was different, but that maybe I was doing something that caused it.
"I don't know what I'm doing," I told Tana. I really have no idea.
Tana said that she thought I had a lot to offer as a friend. I really hope so. I want to be a person that people feel comfortable talking to when they need a friend. I have said that as clearly as I know how.
This is not a need that I can ask someone to meet. If someone becomes my friend in response to my asking, there will always be that idea in the back of my mind that maybe he just feels sorry for me. Maybe he really doesn't care about me and what is inside of me. So all I can do is wait and hope that somewhere someone does care and need me, too.