We had a very serious week discussing on one of the most difficult subjects like depression and how to combat it. In the mega article I mentioned how combating depression needs to be a lifestyle for a person going through depression. And today in the final note I will present a case study which might bring clarity to what I explained on last Sunday.
Negative/depressive situations from the beginning
I know a person who was born with a cardiac problem and was operated at 2½ years of age. He had all sorts of restrictions from the very childhood. There were restrictions on his food. There were restrictions on his movements. There were restrictions on his running with friends. There was restriction in playing football, cricket etc. for him. There was restriction on his studies as he had to go out to have normal education. He was brought up in a very conservative and restrictive atmosphere. He was small. So he used to cry and then forget. His heartaches were short lived at that time.
At the age of 7 he was infected with tuberculosis. It was difficult for him to stay with his parents as his dad was working in a place which was unhealthy for him to live on. His grandparents took the responsibility of taking care of him; to take care of the physical part of him but he suffered mentally after departing from his parents. He was only 7 or 8 years old at that time. When the he used to violate the restrictions, he himself had to suffer and also used to invite the stricter restrictions. He was 10 years old yet had not gone to any school as there was a fear in the minds of his parents and other family members that he may not take on the strain of going to school and study. But finally, he was admitted into a school directly in the fourth grade because of his aunt who was a teacher in the same school. He continued his study in the school.
In the school he used to stand alone in the shades when his friends used to play. He had no choice except for standing and clapping for his friends. He could not participate in many things that his friends were involved in. But he did well in his studies. He stood first in the whole school in his tenth grade.
He was 16 years old. He was an adolescent. He was unruly too but his situations didn’t allow him to even freak out like a normal teen. After schooling he joined a college. He used to go to his college by manual rickshaws. It was embarrassing for him to go by a rickshaw when the girls were even riding bicycles or motor bikes to the college. He used to go to the college at least 40 minutes ahead of everybody so that nobody would see how he was coming to the college. He suffered mentally and was depressed as he could not take part in any other curriculum for his health except regular studies. So many times he used to hide in the bathroom and cry. He used to ask God why He created him this way. Why couldn’t He just take his life?
At home alone, he used to day dream and fantasize a lot. He developed an addiction of reading wrong books. He developed a wrong attitude towards his grandparents as well as his aunt when they used to correct him for all wrong doings. He used to miss his mom and dad desperately. He used to think why they didn’t look after him instead of leaving him there with those people.
He finished his bachelor degree and got admitted for the post graduation in a university. There he suffered from mild depression. He was a grown up boy of 23 years old. The mental demands were more but scope for its development was less because of his physical restrictions. He was a loving guy and loved all his friends so much. But in return when he didn’t get the same love he used to feel depressed. He used to spend most of his times in day dreaming and grumbling to God sitting at a place alone.
All his studies finished. There were many opportunities for higher studies and good jobs but he could not go for anything, all because of his health.
He fell for a girl once but was rejected after two months of the relationship. He hasn’t known the reason of rejection till now.
His health deteriorated further in the year 2000-2001, as the passage in his heart which was made during his first surgery was already blocked. He was taken to a renowned hospital. The doctor said they need to do a surgery again – a very complicated surgery.
Finally, his condition improved after the surgery and he came back home. Then he joined an organization far off his home after three months of rest. His mom stayed with him initially. Then she left and went home. He was all alone for the next 2 years. He who himself was so unable to understand and never given any opportunity to understand before when he was younger, had to battle all alone. He felt the loneliness deeply. He wanted a girl in his life. But there was a thought in his mind that which girl is going to marry him, a heart patient. He tried on his own. Even one of his colleagues brought him many proposals which he didn’t like at all. He was disgusted. He stopped searching for anybody.
Battling in depressive situations
All these situations were negative, depressing for him. He was negative about his life but he had a hope always, that one day God will do something for him.
Throughout his life he had go through depression or negative situations but he tried his best to come over them by accepting whatever came in his way.
He played games alone when loneliness tried to overpower him. He invented new games to amuse himself which at times attracted others too. He involved himself in writing stories and songs when he was downcast and depressed. He kept himself busy in drawing, colouring and painting to combat his loneliness. He kept himself busy reading beautiful novels. He started preparing sermons which he never preached to anybody but to himself. He loved to listen to others when he had ample amount of heartaches hidden deep within himself. He made fun, and was humorous to give others happiness. He learned to enjoy within himself.
New phase of the life with new battles
Finally, the negative situations seem to come to an end when he got married to a caring lady. The new beginning of a new phase of his life was beautiful though there were difficulties to carry on initially as he fell ill terribly. Everybody lost hope. But God saved him again. He was healed miraculously.
Life went on for him. But things were not easy as there were so many restrictions for his sickness which inadvertently became a tyranny for his wife too. At times it was not tolerable for him as he felt responsible for all these problems which pulled his wife down along with him. There seemed to be nothing when he was seen by people but there were so many things that have been pulling him down sometimes. He struggled. He suffered. He was depressed yet tried everything possible to get out of it with God’s strength alongside his wife’s immense care and help. The troubles of his wife which incur day by day all because of him pull him down and make him feel depressed and negative.
But he never put a full stop right there. He used all these experiences to help others when they came to him for help.
This person was very close to my heart because I share the same body, same mind, and same spirit with him. Yes, instead of all the negative situations that came my way, I learned to live above them. It could happen only when I shifted my concentration from my suffering to the suffering of others, from my problems to the God almighty, from my depression & negative situation to His amazing grace. I am a living proof of God’s wondrous grace before all.
Combating the daily depression is not easy yet it is not impossible too. The eyes need to be focussed on something greater and higher instead of something lower and of less importance. It was only God’s grace and my readiness to receive His grace that could change my negative attitudes to positive.
My brother in law always says, “God takes all which is worst in us and makes it best for us.”