Tuesday, November 28, 2017

Heartfelt-Connection

We are wired for connection. But the key is that,
in any given moment, it has to be real.
                                    Brene Brown*


As I continue to be depression free or as I've been saying, 'in remission,' I've come to realize how essential one heartfelt-connection is each day to nurture my renewal.  Without it, I feel vulnerable for darkness to return..

While we may experience multiple connections each day -- the heartfelt-connection simply happens and is a whole different experience.  Brene Brown defines it as: “. . .the energy that exists between people when they feel seen, heard, and valued. . .”**

A heartfelt-connection can be with loved ones, friends or even a stranger.  This morning it happened in the shower area at the YMCA where I swim.  While I was drying off, I heard the following conversation between M and a Stranger... 
    
M:  How are you?
Stranger heading out to her water aerobic class:  My husband is ill...
M:   Get those endorphins moving and you'll feel better...

As I stood drying myself off Stranger walked by...
I said:  You know, I don't know you.  But I'm so sorry your husband is ill... That's a hard
              journey and I know from experience. (I cared for my partner who died of cancer.)
We looked at each other.  With tears in her eyes, stranger mouthed: Thank you.

Today this was my heartfelt connection.

Today's blog opened and closes with Brene Brown:  "Not enough of us know how to sit in pain with others.  I have started to believe that crying with strangers in person could save the world."*

May each of us experience multiple heartfelt-connections each day with friends, loved ones and strangers...

 ###
*Brene Brown, Braving the Wilderness, Random House, pages 128 & 130
**https://www.goodreads.com/quotes/tag/connection

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Tuesday, November 21, 2017

Depression: Friend or Foe?

“Depression can kill you. It can also be a spiritually enriching experience.
It's really an important part of my theology now and my spirituality that life is not perfect...
and I had to acknowledge that I had all kinds of flaws and sadnesses and problems.”
                                                                            Krista Tippett*


What was to have been a month hiatus turned into a multi-month hiatus.  What was to have been a chill time turned into a major depressive episode.  Though plagued with a history of dysthymia; major depression is a whole new experience.   Unlike some major depressive episodes, mine found me functional – my morning swim remained intact as did my morning poached egg, bacon, scone or other breakfast delight.

These past several months found me doing a lot of inner work.  Spiritually, I attempted to meditate, pray, cry out for help from whoever or whatever is out there while also believing perhaps nothing is. Weekly therapy sessions filled with tears, anger, disappointments, jealousies – all the things we don't want to feel.  They were all arising with loud voices.  Conflicts with friends were birthed and gratefully resolved.

Then one day – the depression lifted. As I reflect upon it, I recognize the depression brought all the hurt that dwells deep within my psyche to the surface.  It forced me to face and embrace all the dark aspects of my self.  They're not gone forever.  But they've been seen, heard and understood.   I acknowledge their presence as a part of the fullness of my being...

So I'm back in the saddle of blogging.  Not on as rigid a scale of every Tuesday and Friday -- but back.   Until we meet again,  cheers and many blessings for a Thanksgiving filled with love, laughter and gratitude – for everything – the good, bad, and ugly....

###

*https://www.brainyquote.com/quotes/krista_tippett_561854?src=t_depression

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NOTE:  Depression is a serious diagnosis and should be treated accordingly.  Anyone experiencing a major depressive episode should be assessed by a professional for treatment which is exactly what I did in my own situation.  Depression should never be glossed over or ignored. The above is a blog of my experience and should not be construed in any way as recommended treatment or even consideration for someone going through a major depressive episode.