For most of my life, I have struggled with depression and anxiety, deep-rooted issues with my family and finances and my health all snowballing unbearably during my senior year... my family had cut me off financially, emotionally, I still had my time-bomb (AVM) in my head... I never really let on how terrible things were to most people. From '04-'05 things, well, life was just really a struggle, especially with my sleep. I used to wake up having anxiety attacks, or just waking up and not being able to back to sleep. It would feel like some awful struggle, or what was worse was dreaming I was still awake... ug... only to 'wake' up an hour or so later. If it wouldn't pass, take walks and later started going out to do graffiti. That year I started taking st john's wort, and I don't think that really helped much.
Actually, I know that didn't help much, because when I started working after graduation, I started seeing some docs about the sleep thing (because it got worse)... and they said the st john's wort wasn't strong enough for what I had... even after getting a job, and then, having my heath back (my AVM was gone in nov 05), everything I could possibly want – my sleep and depression was *worse* than ever. I started doing all that I could to "get better": excersing, quit smoking, yoga..... :( I've gone through Prozac, Celexa, Mirtazapine, Trazodone, and some other one they took me off of (because it litteraly started making me crazy), and a couple others for sleep... but nothing really helped. I'd go thu times when I'd feel 'okay' or even 'happy', but it would all just end up crashing back down. I used to get so jealous of my boyfriend when he'd fall right to sleep, and then I'd be up for hours listening to him breathe. And, then there's that gross, cloudy feeling on some meds. Like you can "kind of" manage, but you feel like you're operating remotely... I think the hardest was walking to work and having to always resist the urge to jump off the freeway overpass. I was doing everything I could, but there was just no way out for me... and all my efforts to try and fix myself just made me feel even more stressed.
It was sort of a new year's resolution, to re-read the new testament. But, of course the bible sat there for months... I was at the point where I was going to kill myself, and started to go through all my plans – life just was too painful, and too painful all the time. It took so much just to pick up the bible and try to pray to a God I had hated for so long, but then I started reading and trying to pray... unfortunately, I've had some poor examples of who God is through family... I started praying for some peace. I called my brother up and studied with him, and he pointed out several very serious promises God has made us (2 Timothy 1:7, Jeremiah 29:11-13), and I claimed them in my prayers... and prayed that God would make himself very real to me. The day (or I should say night) after that prayer (and since then), my insomnia GONE, panic attacks GONE, wanting to jump on the freeway on my way to work GONE, crushing pressure on my chest GONE, stress headaches GONE. Seriously, I haven't slept better in YEARS!! ...and I know it's God because I have tried everything else.
I've tried Buddhism, Taoism, yoga, chanting/meditation, Scientology, witchcraft when I was younger, studied Judaism, Islam... I know this sounds crazy and even I thought I'd be the last person to find God, but he is SO real. So, after all that happened, I said, "Okay, God! I'm going to church Saturday with my family!" Questions and doubts I had about the person I was dating were totally answered in the speaker's message. It was not an accident at all that I was to go that day... And there is some really amazing stuff I'm studying in the bible that only further confirms my beliefs both historically and prophetically. On June 17, 2006 I was baptised Seventh-Day Adventist. They're the denomination that follows the bible most closely, and that's the key – especially to understanding a lot of what's happening now socially, politically. I believe the bible with all my heart, and this is not blind faith (or what I thought "faith" used to be), but is founded on fact and experience. From what I have experienced and from my studies, I am totally convinced and have decided to commit every aspect of my life to God and sharing what He has done in my life with others. Most of my friends have been really supportive and even came to my baptism, I think they're mostly happy I didn't kill myself, and that I'm happy, well, not just 'happy', but they can tell that I have real peace. I believe that you can have this too, that no matter what the challenges are, that God is willing and able to
help heal and save all that come to Him.