Experiencing Life

"I wish you could understand what this is like without having to actually experience it."

I have said this to my husband several times in the past, but I've said it even more recently.  I've been feeling so awful to the point that it has made me nauseated every day (no, I'm not pregnant) and it has made my feet and legs shake in anxiety.  I try to explain to him what I feel in my heart, but I can't find any words that are adequate to describe the depth of sorrow and pain I feel.  It's discouraging not knowing what to say so that he can understand.  I wish with all my heart that he could understand, but I do not wish for him to feel such awful things.  I wouldn't wish this on anyone!  Since he hasn't ever felt what I feel and I pray that he never has to, he will not be able to understand and my completely inadequate words will have to do.

This morning, I was thinking about this again: "I wish you could understand without having to experience it" and my mind turned to the words I say in my prayers sometimes.

"Heavenly Father, please help me to feel compassion for others, help me to be kind, help me to feel love, help me to be more patient, help me to be more Christlike, etc."  But then there is that unspoken but implied addition of "but help me to have all these Christlike attributes without having to experience anything hard that will help me develop them."

It's like I want to gain life experience without experiencing life.  I want to be patient without having my patience tested, compassionate without feeling the depths of sorrow myself, loving without having to struggle to feel anything at all.

In order to understand depression, I must experience it and I am definitely experiencing it right now.  But that's why this blog exists, because I feel so much compassion and desire to help others who experience this same struggle so that they won't have to struggle alone like I did for so long.

Do I still wish that I could learn compassion, patience, and love another way?  Yes, sometimes.  But I am learning to be thankful for depression and for how it has opened my heart in ways that I don't know if anything else could.

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