The Creative Cure For Depression
Becoming a parent changes everything. It’s a blessing, yes, and somehow also a means to complete depression.
Now, before you judge me, take a deeper read. I have always had the dream of having a family, house with a white picket fence; a pot of coffee brewing each morning, kissing my husband goodbye on his way to work.
It all seemed so perfect.
What I never prepared for was the feeling of freedom being sucked right out of my life in one fell swoop. Gone.
Hold up. Rewind.
My husband and I were engaged after a little over a year of dating. He proposed under the dark sky, filled with the smoke and ashes of fireworks dissipating one, hot, fourth of July, summer night. It was heavenly.
Only 3 months later we were married and the following month, we got pregnant. These days — that’s moving pretty fast.
Most women plan their glorious weddings on Pinterest for 2.4 years before saying their “I do’s” at the alter. Not us, we spent about $4,000, got hitched and got started building a family.
Changes. Big changes all dropping down upon me.
I had some learning to do about what it meant to be a wife, a homemaker, a cook, a best friend, you name it. But reality hits and all those things don’t sound like much fun when you’re pregnant, exhausted and building a miniature human inside your womb.
So the failures started lining up.
No dinner was cooked. No cleaning was done. No plans were made with friends. No calls were made to my mother. No relationships were being strengthened. I was just trying to survive.
The pregnancy went along and by the graces of God we delivered a beautiful baby girl, while Christmas music filled the hospital labor room. We named her Noella.
Bringing baby home was a shock to my system.
I had little sleep and a demanding hungry baby. My house was a mess, my attitude went down the drain and I began to consider myself a victim. My thoughts were constantly wondering, “Why me? Why is my child so much more difficult than “normal” babies? Why does my child cry so much? Why doesn’t my baby sleep more? Why me? Why did this happen to me?
I seemed to be feeling a type of post-pardum depression but I didn’t want to tell anyone. I didnt want to look weak or incompetent.
After all this was my dream, a house, a baby, a husband. This was what I wanted!
It started to dawn on me that my freedom was gone. I was trapped in a house with a child that needed me all the time. I had no freedom. No escape.
But…I started to find sanity in what I call my “creative outlets”. The moments where I could sneak away on my laptop, read the blogs of other women, feel some sense of community and eventually start my own online mission and business.
Thats what I did. I created a website and blog that allowed me to escape the feeling of entrapment. I had these blank canvases to fill, to explore, to dream and to create something!
My blog and my business became a passion and obsession. Whenever my baby girl was sleeping I’d flip open my Mac and escape into a word of creativity. I was writing, designing graphics, uploading videos and starting to find a voice online. And guess what? Other women were starting to look to me for advice!
I remember seeing these words:
Grant that I may not so much seek
To be consoled as to console;
To be understood as to understand;
To be loved as to love.
For it is in giving that we receive;
That was it, the key to escaping depression. Consoling others, teaching others, loving others and helping others.
My business is now thriving, we added a second little munchkin to the family…and our version of “imperfect balance” is actually quite perfect.
Without my “creative outlets” my post-pardum depression would have grown into a deeper issue.
I’m thankful for my ability to share my stories and my mission online. I get to feel a sense of community, of love and passion.
Today I have blog that has served over 4 million visitors and I also have coaching practice where I help working women to design a life, business and income that suites their ideal lifestyle.
I’m happy to say I’ve found my purpose and I impact thousands of women daily. It all starts with baby steps.
Keep walking forward and trust that the stepping stones will miraculously appear at the right moments.