Skip to main content

Under Oath: Finding Meaning! (From my Diaries)

Admittedly, I have my own sphere of influence. There are people who look up to me; whose lives I would have touched or influenced in some way, whether in the classroom or church hall or from my writings or my work as a community developer or social worker or from my days as a radio talk-show host. I have accomplished much, too, in my lifetime. And, often, those are the things people see and are the things people use as a measuring stick to judge how much of a success or failure you are. Unfortunately, our lives are distilled into number of degrees we accumulate, our professions, the size of our bank accounts and the connections we have. If we do not have those to show, somehow, our lives are characterized as a colossal failure.

Despite all that I have accomplished that can be considered a success, i think my greatest accomplishment has been living with depression for the last sixteen (16) years. More specifically called bi-polar disorder (BPD), I have been surviving this mental disease that has led to the death of many. It is much easier to deal with now, than when I was first diagnosed. I survived the numerous suicide ideations and attempts; the many suffocating, dark moments of not-wanting-to-get-outta-bed, no-appetite depression and the impulsive and manic episodes. Those days I was in great denial, too. I did not want to acknowledge BPD's presence. I did not want to be seen as crazy. I did not want every opinion I gave or self expression to be filtered through the lenses of my diagnosis. The denial drove me into deeper depression and feelings of aloneness and inferiority and pain and uselessness... Today, I acknowledge its presence. I acknowledge that it and I are equal occupants of this body - this mind - this soul. And, since it and I have to share space, I cannot deny its presence - that I must do things to ensure a harmonious cohabitation.

In some ways, BPD has brought out the best in me. It showed me that beyond the depression and beyond the manic, impulsive episodes that I AM resilient, I AM strong, I AM tenacious, I CAN lead while I "bleed". I AM a success story beyond the accolades and accomplishments. I survived AND I AM surviving. And so many others we call failures have their own stories of success and triumph and resilience that cannot be measured by the accumulations of things: Mothers with children who were "fathered" by no man, who received no university degree, who worked menial jobs at minimum wage but whose children are now adults who give an honest day's work for an honest day's pay. Often they are not seen as success stories because they have not the "things" to show. But they have conquered much. They survived, despite poverty, perhaps even because of their poverty. Their survival and creative potentials were unearthed and while others buckled under the pressure, they stood.

I am learning. I am finding meaning in the simplest things. Everyday is a lesson in my own strength - being able to stand in the midst of my own weakness - human frailty (at least as perceived by others). I am finding meaning. When i feel down, I no longer feel ashamed. i give myself permission to feel down or low. I acknowledge the presence of depression and I try to move on with my own life and leave it be. It has been 16 years of fighting and recently i got tired of fighting and started finding my own freedom in surrender. This is my journey! I own it. I surrender to it. I acknowledge it. I SURRENDER!

Comments

  1. Best wishes as you continue to live your life with passion and with truth.

    ReplyDelete
  2. Thank you Gwyneth. I am taking it one day at a time and standing in my truth. Thanks again for stopping by and leaving your encouragement.

    ReplyDelete

Post a Comment

Popular posts from this blog

Comfort is OVERRATED & Will Stunt Your GROWTH!!!

I have been thinking a lot lately about success and growth. I think many of us aspire to success and there are different versions of how that may manifest in our lives. For some, success shows up in the accumulation of wealth, degrees, notoriety or accomplishing simple life goals. Personally, I believe that each of us deposited into this realm of existence came with a specific assignment to benefit the earth and that success will be measured by how well I have lived out my specific assignment.

(My Photo: Community Workshop facilitation)

Whatever success looks like to you, you will have to agree that success does not happen by osmosis or luck. Success begins with a paradigm shift. I call it the cultivation of the growth mindset. One ways of thinking that we have to cultivate in this growth mindset towards success is that we must become comfortable with being uncomfortable. We underestimate and undervalue the profitability of challenge, opposition and discomfort in developing intellectu…

The Wicked Woman We Love to Hate!

Choose a Caribbean island - any one. There's a mother who's just beat her child with the first thing that her hands fall on. The Caribbean is inundated with narratives of mothers who dare not spare the rod and spoil the child - mothers who dig up ants nest and put their child to kneel in it, on a grater with their hands tied behind their back; mothers who use a hot iron to burn the hand of their thieving child; mothers who go into schools to box up the disrespectful child for answering back teacher and bringing shame to her name.
These are the things that Caribbean mothers do. They do this, not necessarily because they are wicked, but in the name of discipline.

We are a people who have learned violence. It's become part of our social DNA. Our parents learned that violence was how transgressors are taught to do better and behave better. They learned such violence from their parents, and their parents from theirs and their parents from the plantation. The whip is what we le…

SUPERHEROES & SOCIAL MEDIA

Social Media, and in particular twitter, has become a space for spewing caustic and vitriolic effluent at people with whom we disagree. I am sometimes amazed at how people feel so empowered and emboldened sitting behind a screen to descend into the bowels of utter nastiness to express dissent to something that someone else posted. It is worse now that we have 280 characters instead of 140. It means that the nastiness is times two. But social media can be and has been used as a source of good. I have been the beneficiary of deep friendships and formed a formidable network of people who have supported and pushed me along in my professional and personal life.Yet, we do not hear many stories about the power and reach of social media. In this post, I want to speak about a quiet Superhero that I encountered on social media.

I had been working in three vulnerable communities in the last couple of years on a urban disaster risk reduction project being implemented by Habitat for Humanity Jamai…

ShareThis