I knew she was struggling with minor forms of depression. Then I knew it was getting worse and the medications were increased and then she was not responding well to any medication or other help.
Today I learn she has been on medical leave from work for the last several weeks and in a very special program at the hospital. This large and reputable hospital takes only three cases per month and my sister-in-law was accepted.
A major part of the treatment is electroshock therapy, plus a lot of other care. She is able to stay at home, but things are very hard for her and her family.
My brother-in-law is hopeful. He has seen improvements but it will be around Christmas before the doctors can determine to what extent she has benefited from the program.
I'm experiencing quite a few emotions since I received the news.
Partly, I feel sad. Such a bright, intelligent, and beautiful person simply racked with tremendous pain.
Partly, I feel scared. I fear that I may one day be overcome by the same thing. I'm more hopeful than I have been in the last few years. But, my fear is that the darkness will return with greater strength as the years and decades progress. I hope not but...
And partly I feel angry. I hate this crap.
I thankful for my psychologist, psychiatrist, pastor, and friends, but I remember where I've come from. I know the difference between a bad day and a disease ridden mind that cannot cope with most situations.
I'm most especially thankful that I have a Savior who was tempted in every way, even forsaken by His Father, but through it all did not despair. All that He did for me, my sister-in-law, and a great many others.
I am a Lutheran pastor recently diagnosed with clinical depression. This is an account of my soul's journey to healing.
What is a soul? You do not have a soul, rather you are a soul. You are a soul enfleshed with body, emotion, and mind. All of you is your soul.
The red heart with a black cross at the center should remind us that the righteous live by faith in the Crucified One. The heart rests in a white rose, to show that faith gives joy, comfort, and peace. The rose is white, not red, because white is the color of the heavenly spirits and angels. The white rose stands in a field of blue, the color of heaven, to show that joy in the spirit and in faith in this life is only the beginning of future heavenly joy. Surrounding the sky-blue field is a gold ring, to show that happiness and joy in heaven has no end, buts lasts forever, just as gold is the hightest, most noble and precious metal.