This letter was written during my 1st year of grief.
You are the part of this grief package that I was not aware of. I never thought that you and I would ever be walking together hand in hand. In fact, I never wanted you to ever be a part of my life.
Whenever I heard that someone was depressed, I had no idea what that really meant, but now I do. There is nothing like firsthand acquaintance with you to really know what you can do to a person. You are a prolonged and great sadness and are considered a normal part of the grieving process. All I know is that I do not want you here with me for any longer than necessary.
Unresolved grief leads to an even greater degree of depression. So bottling up my emotions is something that I will not do. I want to go through this grieving process in the right way so that I do not have to stay in this painful place.
I read some about you, Depression, and found out that there are different degrees of depression. Some widows are so depressed that they cannot even get out of bed in the morning. Life simply just stops for them. Then there are others that continue to function as they carry around feelings of great sadness inside. I am one of those.
Tears are a part of my every day and my heart aches with this deep void inside. I sometimes find it hard to really think clearly. My feelings overwhelm me at times and I will have to allow myself to cry just to get relief.
I find that talking with other widows who have gone through this grieving process or are going through this process is helpful. Also talking to my Christian psychologist helps me to see things more clearly. I know that in order for me to conquer you, I must have some help and some guidance.
There is comfort in knowing that some of those closest to God’s heart went through the pain of depression and God let them write about it. David so aptly describes depression in the book of Psalms. At the end of those descriptions he always found something to praise God about. So, praise must be the antidote to you, Depression.
Elijah told God that he just wanted to die and God so graciously and lovingly sent him sustenance and rest in his time alone.
Naomi was not only depressed after the loss of her husband and two sons, she was bitter and angry at God and wanted people to call her by a new name that meant bitter. However, God did not turn His back on her. He caused her daughter-in-law Ruth to go with her when she returned to her country. Ruth went out in the fields and gleaned wheat to support them both. I think that Ruth was Naomi’s picture of God’s love in action and that love was what cracked Naomi’s hardened heart and allowed it to heal. The best part of that story is how God gave her back 3 people to love for the 3 people she lost – Ruth, Boaz, and grandson Obed.
“And the women said to Naomi, Blessed be the Lord, Who has not left you this day without a close kinsman, and may his name be famous in Israel. And may he (Obed) be to you a restorer of life and a nourisher and supporter in your old age, for your daughter-in-law who loves you, who is better to you than seven sons, has borne him.” Ruth 4:14-15
This story of Naomi’s says to me that God is not going to hold it against me that I am going through all the emotions of anger, resentment, depression, etc. that go along with grief. He is walking through this process with me and I WILL get through it and come out of it. I am so thankful to know that.
This is wonderful, Candy! The Lord has been there every step with us and will continue to be with us in each day of our journeys as we face our futures. All of us widows and widowers ARE getting through this, and you do a great job of encouraging us as you move forward one step, one day at a time. Thank you for sharing your story and life with us.