Wednesday, November 14, 2012

Every little thing is gonna be alright...


Now that you're all convinced that I'm absolutely crazy, here's a realization that I came to today with the help of my BYUSA executive director. He's responsible for helping me to develop as a leader while I focus on the planning and execution of my program. Once a week we have a stewardship meeting to lightly discuss my program and then focus on my goals and leadership qualities. 

He told me that some of the difficulties I've been having likely stem from the fact that my body and my spirit are conflicted. The biological make up of my body is prone to depression. I feel physically weak and sore all the time. I'm tired and frustrated. I'm getting no satisfaction out of things that I used to love to do. However, my spirit longs to be joyful. I have a strong testimony and a lot of faith. 

There's a misconception that people are depressed when they don't have enough faith; that if we'd only pray harder or read our scriptures more, the depression would go away. If this was true, then wouldn't the same advice apply to all trials? For example, if a loved one passes away, increased spirituality won't bring them back. Yes, it makes it easier to deal with trials, but it doesn't always make the trial go away. "Sometimes God calms the storm. Other times he lets the storm rage and He calms the child."

When talking with my doctor, and through some recent experiences, I've realized one other significant thing. Depression is a depressed mood. A person can still choose to be happy, but that doesn't get rid of their depressed mood. They can be grateful, optimistic, outgoing, hardworking, etc. Those qualities can sometimes make the depression easier to deal with, but they can also make a person wearisome for overexertion. 

My doctor said something that made me question my efforts: "Why are you trying so hard to be happy when you know you're sad? It's not wrong to be sad when something bad happens to you." We talked about healthy ways to deal with this and a timeline for how long I think it's appropriate to mourn this rejection. 

And so, yes, I'm pretty crazy. I feel more manic-depressant than anything. I'm trying to control my feelings to the extent that I don't bother my roommates and I'm still able to manage my classes. But I want to be honest about what I'm feeling. The more I try and cover up, the more baggage I'll have to deal with later. So if I'm sad, please love me. If I'm happy, love me still.

And I do firmly believe that every little thing is going to be alright. Maybe not right away, but according to His plan for my life.

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