When I got to my therapist Karen I told her I was doing really well. I told her about looking at my life as though God had designed it. She said this time of feeling good was different, felt different to her. She said I wasn’t immediately wanting to rush out and do things. In the past I would do that and then exhaust myself. She heard me being patient instead of pushy, willing to wait for the right moment, the right task, the right dog. I had been wondering about the painful times. While talking to Karen I remembered the truth that without PTSD and depression, I might have gone on the standard career track, become a science teacher someplace, and then sometime in my fifties felt dissatisfied and wondered what I should be doing instead. I’ve learned a lot about compassion from being depressed, and it’s forced me to see that taking care of myself is primary.
Later I realized that, unlike other times when I have “finally got somewhere,” this time I’ve seen that I’ve been in God’s hands all along. That Spirit has been guiding my life from the beginning. This reminds me of another meaning of “epiphany” — it’s when something that has been there all along suddenly becomes visible. Instead of rushing out to make things happen, I’m willing to wait until the “next thing” comes along. Gosh what a relief! I don’t have to “figure out” what my vocation is, all I have to do is look at my life. I’ve handed my life over to God many times, and asked to be given a sign, and was disappointed when nothing happened. I was even disappointed when God said “You’re doing fine,” I wanted to be given a task, something big that would be visible in the world… Well, you silly person, isn’t Neskaya big enough for you?
I also see that depression forced me to find the things that really fed my soul, fed my heart. When you’re depressed, the brain chemistry makes it so that you are unable to enjoy things. If you can’t enjoy things, what is still worth doing? For me, that was dancing ancient dances in a circle of people.