Living in Color
April 16, 2013
I’m seeing in color. I am living in color!
For anyone who has dealt with depression, you probably have more than an inkling of what it means to see in color (and to just see gray).
When I am depressed—especially for a prolonged period of time—things seem gray; unclear, uninteresting, dull…like I just want to go to bed. Even things I normally love take a whole lot of energy to complete. I once sat with a publisher client on the other side of a mirror at a focus group. The group was discussing Black women and Bible reading habits. Now anyone who knows me knows that those two subjects alone can keep me talking and thinking and excited. But, I sat behind those mirrors, looking at women getting excited about a possible project and I ate M&Ms. (those are focus group staples, by the way). I wolfed those chocolate candies down probably three by three and just wished for the focus group to be over so I could go back home and sleep. My mom was sick at this time and I probably sensed her death was close, but I had been pretty down a few months before this time. The things that once seemed exciting to me were just not.
Depression makes even the things we’re passionate about seem boring or gray.
But today, this week, the last few months, I have not been seeing gray—despite the Chicago weather. I have been living in color. My attitude is better. I smile more. I feel better…genuinely better. Thank God.
So what happened?
- I think it has been a combination of some interesting projects coming to fruition at work and in my personal life (in publishing this can take a while sometimes…such a seasonal/cyclical business)
- my daughter is settling into full-time preschool (which helps!)
- my family has received some good news (an answer to a long-time prayer)…and while we’re still waiting on some things, we are beginning to see the end of the tunnel and have less stress (and that is great in itself)
- my siblings and I are planning a fun-filled time to honor my father’s 75th birthday. Just reflecting on his life—not one of special privilege or special fortune—but one of faithfulness to his family and to his God, makes me smile and inspires me. Yes, I wish mom were here to celebrate with us, but I do have to focus on those I have with me now and rejoice and love ever minute and moment we have together now. Having something to look forward to is important
But what else has me seeing in color?
- A few good outings with friends. Always good.
- Working out. A must for keeping my depression at bay.
- A weight-loss program geared toward eating healthier…absolutely helpful. In fact, I say I’m working off the 60 pounds I’ve gained in the past 13 years as I have dealt with depression. I know for a fact I ate chocolate as my medicine to help me get out of bed to face a stressful job (one that I no longer have, by the way…thank God!)
- I have also been more intentional about helping others…I know so many of us are hurting; what can I do to make this day brighter for a friend going through? I’ve done a few small things and I know it has helped others as well as myself.
So, I pray your journey finds you seeing in color again soon. Know that it is possible. Know that the day will come. Keep moving forward. Be kind to yourself.
What color are you seeing today? What has you seeing in that color?