Do you experience depression? Did you know how normal that is? Though it used to hit me by surprise, I can feel it coming now — it’s like a weather forecast in the usually sunny Colorado (it’s sunny 300 days a year here!) — “we’re predicting clouds and rain starting on Monday that will last until Friday of next week.” And now that I can recognize the subtle energetic shifts of this so-called depression cloud, I can prepare. I can create space. I can be with the experience instead of resisting it by barreling through. And, by doing so, this drastically helps to cut down the time of each “episode” for me. In the past, it would show up (or, I’d discover myself in it) and I would begin to feel slightly foreign, a little bit confused and like there was something inherently wrong with me. Everything would feel off (a bit or a lot) and I’d be disappointed that I couldn’t seem to pull it together — like everyone else. Depression was easy to dismiss because people know me as a generally sunshine-y gal. I can make anything positive and if I’m around other people (especially people I’m inspired by) I get tons of energy. And in the past, a lot of my energy was spent on proving myself — especially at work. I worked a lot and could easily blame it the depression on the job, the drama, the bad client, the stupid project, my boss, my own self worth, etc… It has been interesting as a full-time entrepreneur this past year. I’ve finally “figured it out” — I’m doing soul-work that I’m deeply passionate about that is both incredibly rewarding and creative. It's a freaking dream. But, I still see the depression roll in and I’m no longer able to “blame” it on anyone or anything else. Obviously there are triggers (hello, all of 2020), but ultimately it is an experience I shift into and something I know I can shift out of. I don’t fear it anymore. I stopped shaming myself. I know the tools and I know how capable I am in navigating it. Instead, I try to befriend it and work with it. And ask what it’s here for, how I can support the process, etc. And, of course, get my own support as needed. (I am privileged to have a sh*t ton of professional support these days.) My personal experience with depression never really looked like what I thought depression was — based off of the Zoloft commercial I was saw as a kid — you know, the one in black and white with a slowly rolling personified tomato. Was it even a tomato? Maybe I’m making this commercial up. To me it looked more like being extra tired (in my body) when I started a project that was just for me (not for my job or a friend or side-client). It looked like needing to rest and lie down a lot throughout the day — but only on the weekends after running errands and doing normal life-stuff like hanging with friends. It was strange how that feeling didn't happen during the week at my job. I felt like there was an invisible wall of something (I didn't know what) that was keeping me from enjoying and experiencing my life. It was illusive. I wasn't sad really. And I wouldn't describe it as numb or unfeeling… back then, it showed up as confusion and fogginess, distraction, feeling stuck and lacking confidence in myself. I've noticed over the years that for me, depression shows up in a variety of ways, so it's not always the same experience each time.
Anyway… It wasn’t until I started my healing journey in 2013 that I learned depression is a common state that we can ALL slip into from time to time. That it’s not just a thing you have or don’t have. It’s not as unique or simple as they made it sound on those tv commercials. It’s certainly NOT something to be ashamed of. It is INFORMATION. Like data that my body is sharing with me that something needs tending to. In regard to situational depression, Karla McLaren writes “Depression is not a single emotion, but a constellation of emotions, postures, decisions and health issues that exact what I call the 'brilliant stop sign of the soul.' Depression is an ingenious (albeit overwhelming) movement in the psyche that takes you out of commission for crucial reasons." I’m sharing about this now in hopes to help normalize this experience. Depression is complex and nuanced — and it is a natural response in the body and mind. In my healing practice, I work with a trauma-informed modality called Emotional Polarity Technique. And in each session we identify where you currently are in the 7 stages of healing. Stage 4 is depression and it's very common to be here. I usually describe it as feeling stuck and unmoving in relationship to whatever you're dealing with in life. In each session, we create resolution to the issue at hand and release the ingrained neurological response that is triggering depression in your system. And, then we craft a new way forward that is in alignment with your mind & body. It's remarkable. If you experience depression, I want you to know that you are not alone. And you are not destined to stay in depression. And it has absolutely NOTHING to do with how worthy you are of loving life and being loved by life. Depression is a normal human experience and I'm here to support you in all of your human-ness. ❤️