Four Questions to Ask When Feeling Down - Part 4

June 19, 2015, 12:00 am


Do I Need Professional Help?

Eight years ago I experienced the most difficult year of my life. It all started with the death of my uncle Lloyd. Uncle Lloyd was more than just an uncle to me. He was like a father and best friend to me. From the time I was in middle school, he had been there to answer my difficult life questions. He was a grandpa to my kids. For some reason, I had this hope that he would always be there. Even when he was diagnosed with cancer, I convinced myself that he would get through it. When they called from the nursing home to say that he had passed away, I had a difficult time believing it.

I conducted the funeral service for him. It wasn’t easy, but I managed to get through it. I usually went back to work the day after a family member’s funeral. This time, I gave myself a few extra days to process my thoughts and feelings. When it was time to return to work, I didn’t want to go. In fact, I didn’t want to do anything. I did force myself to go to work. I had a hard time concentrating both at work and home. I would cry whenever thoughts of my uncle crossed my mind. At first I thought I was experiencing normal grief and expected it would be over in a week or so. It didn’t get better in a week or so. In fact, things got so bad that I didn’t want to do much of anything.

Finally, one day I admitted to myself that I was depressed. There was no way to get better unless I got some help, so I set up an appointment with my family doctor.  I told her what had been going on in my life. She recommended an anti-depressant medication. It wasn’t easy, but I promised to try the medication. I also began to meet weekly with a friend to share what was going on in my life. I also forced myself to start exercising every day. It took about three months for me to start feeling like my old self. Without making the combination of medicine, discussion, and exercise, it would have taken a lot longer to recover.

You may be going through a difficult time in your life. Perhaps, like me, you have experienced a loss from which you just can’t seem to recover.  Maybe you don’t know why you feel down. Whatever the case, you are not able to get past the depression on your own. I want to encourage you to seek help. I would be happy to meet with you. There are people I can refer you to. You don’t have to keep going on like this. The Bible reminds us to seek counsel from others. Please feel free to contact me at 231-218-1042. Talk to you next week.

Tom

Posted by The Chaplain's Corner at 12:00 am
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