Shifting From Dark to Light

African sunrise Pictures, Images and Photos

While we were dating, Ben and I often went hiking on the beautiful Alaskan mountains. One particular morning found us at the top of Flattop a little after sunrise. I remember observing the gradual shift from dark to light as the sun’s rays spread across the land, leaving a kaleidoscope of shadows.

These last few days I’ve been reflecting on that scene in connection with my newly found happiness.  For years I suffered under a cloud of despair: Seeing my future as hopeless and desolate.  Looking back through time, I can only remember brief stints of joy splattered on a canvass of bleakness–my existence.

Up until a few months ago, before I recognized the need of intervention–in the forms of therapy and medication–I would wake with a rising sense of dread.  The kids would watch hours of the Wiggles so I could sleep through the pain of severe anxiety and depression.  When they engaged in normal child activities, the screwed up wiring in my brain produced reactions of intense and irrational irritation and anger.  My husband was terrified to come home because he did not know what Amber he would find: the cheerful and supportive wife or the desperate and despairing wife.  Multiple times a week I would have meltdowns complete with tears and dreary announcements of our future.

Under the guidance of a wonderful practitioner, I received the help I needed.  After finding the right dose and mix of medications–to treat the clinical depression and anxiety–I saw a noticeable difference.  The manifestation began by waking up full of hope and excitement for the day ahead of me, followed by joyful anticipation of the transition our family will soon make when Ben begins medical school, and capped when I no longer dreaded my husband’s long work week but looked forward to any time we had together.

The medication precipitated a symbolic sunrise in my life.  No longer do I dwell in darkness; rather, the shadows are carefully dispelling under the gentle caress of the sun’s rays.

No longer incapacitated by mental illness, I am peeling away the layers and finding the person I have always been: Compassionate, optimistic, and happy.

Thank you all for supporting me through this painful journey.   Your patience, kindness, and friendship has meant so much to me.

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22 Comments

Filed under Depression

22 responses to “Shifting From Dark to Light

  1. We all love you! Thanks for sharing your journey with us. So glad the light is coming back for you!

  2. Glad you found the help you needed Amber! 🙂 You are a great wife and mother – it shines through in your words!

  3. How wonderful, Amber! Such an uplifting and positive post! I am so happy to hear how you've been feeling lately and that the light is getting brighter for you each day. You're such a sweet woman with a wonderful little family and a really bright future ahead – keep up the great progress, optimism and happiness. You (and your family) really deserve it! 🙂

  4. My heart swells for you! May your sun shine warmly, friend.

  5. Shelley

    I am so glad things are going better for you! I must say I love how real your blog is!

  6. I'm so glad you made it through. And I'm so excited for you to experience what life can be without depression. It's gunna be great!

  7. There is an awesome Post Secret this week that basically says something about getting back on medication because they love themselves enough to.

  8. Melanie Jacobson

    It's so good to hear that you're doing so well. It makes me happy.

  9. I have been in places similar to the ones you describe, and I am so glad you are feeling the clouds lifting. I hope this lightness stays for a long time. xoxo

  10. So happy to hear that you've been finding solutions! I'm still peeling back the layers, but it gets better. 🙂

  11. I was fortunate enough to get the help I needed (therapy and medication) in my early twenties for chronic clinical depression – I can not imagine quite what it would have been like to cope with it and my children at the same time. Ten years later I still take medication, and I do suffer the occasional setback, but overall life is a pleasure, and at least my family understands when it is not.This is such an honest and powerful post, Amber – I firmly believe that by sharing your experience, you are making life easier for those who aren't ready to share their own. Awesome, lady.

  12. Tay

    I am relieved to hear that! May your days continue to begin with hope and without crippling anxieties.

  13. I'm glad you are feeling better. I remember that same feeling. When I knew the cloud had lifted and I was more than just that gloomy person.

  14. Thanks for being brave and sharing your story. I am so glad you are finding peace!

  15. My heart is full for you Amber. So glad to hear this. xoxo

  16. I am so very, very happy for you! It's wonderful when the fog starts to lift!

  17. Oh, Amber. I'm so happy that you're in a place that lets the real you shine through. Bring on the sunshine!

  18. Hooray for sun! I hope it continues to shine on you, friend. You deserve it!

  19. It is a terribly difficult journey…so glad you are now on the light side.

  20. I was so happy to read this post! And as always, glad to be here reading and shifting along.

  21. Pingback: The Day I Couldn’t Stop Crying | Making the Moments Count