My journey out of depression was a bit like the Wizard of Oz. In the story, a simple instruction to “follow the yellow brick road,” results in an odyssey for poor Dorothy. She skips away from Munchkin land with a song in her heart and no idea of the perils that stand between her and Kansas. When my doctor explained hormonal imbalance as a major cause of depression it all sounded so simple. I just needed supplemental hormones. I had no clue that poppy fields and flying monkeys were waiting for me too.
The poppy fields appeared immediately. Test results showed that my hormones were haywire due to some internal organ chaos. Major surgery was necessary before I could take the magic hormone pills. Recovery was not only physically painful but mentally devastating thanks to required pain medications. The warning labels on the bottles all indicated depression as a potential side effect. Melancholy clouds descended, that were the darkest I’d ever known. Fitful sleep was my only escape. Flying monkey thoughts would flitter through my dreams taunting me with the notion that this had all been a ruse. Magic pills were for fairy tales. I clung to what I believed to be true about God in spite of this downward turn. I knew He would not leave me alone in my pain med poppy field.
When I finished the medications I saw the glow of the Emerald City again. I began to take hormone supplements and the fog slowly crept away. A joy that I had not felt since childhood bubbled inside me. I had taken the first major step on my yellow brick road of healing.
If you are lost in depression and trying to find your way back to joy, consider taking the steps I used:
- Go to a doctor you trust.
- Tell him the truth.
- Do what he says.
- Trust God for each step
You may have to repeat this process several times before you find someone who can uncover the roots of your depression. Don’t give up! My next post will highlight two more physical reasons for depression that were hiding inside me.