For as long as I can remember in my family, the subject of mental health was taboo. On both sides there were more people that didn’t talk about it than those who did. I’ m not sure if it was a lack of understanding or if they didn’t want to know. Being that I am from a Christian family (both sides) I often heard it said that all “such and such” needed to do was pray. Or people that know Jesus shouldn’t have depression, mental health issues etc. Well you know what People that know and love Jesus shouldn’t have cancer, be obese, have a cold, the flu or any other thing that deals with the body. I don’t know why it is so hard for Us to understand that mental health issues exist and can come knocking on our door.
In the African American community the issue of mental health is still taboo. To talk of it is to deny the power of Jesus, or put “White people’s issues” on black folks. I truly believe that God is a healer, I also believe that He has placed people in our lives an spheres of understanding to be His eyes and ears and to help those of us who need it.
I would say that I was in that crowd before I had my own issues with mental health. I distinctly remember that time in my life like it was yesterday. For months I had been walking around with what I thought was chip on my shoulder; I would flip on you in a matter of seconds. I could be in a great mood one moment and in a really foul mood the next. It seemed that there was no in between. For months maybe longer it went on like this. People were afraid to talk to me, no one dared tell me what they thought of my behavior; and from what I remember no one thought maybe I was depressed or having mental health issues. Finally one person asked me if I was bi-polar. I didn’t want to accept that diagnosis, but I DID own up to the fact that mentally I wasn’t right. I was in a bad place. I prayed for deliverance AND made the decision to go and get help. I owed it to my daughter to make sure she had a whole mother.
It was through this experience that I decided to go into psychology. I KNEW that God had made us mind, body and spirit; THUS I KNEW that mental health problems had very real spiritual and physical component. You could not treat one without treating the other….to be continued.
I see myself in you. I see myself in the reflection that I look at on a daily basis. I am a mother anew. I see the joy, the laughter, the fear, the tiredness. the longing to protect, to be there in the moment, every moment. I see your smile, I see the shine in your eyes. I see your staunch determination. I see your desire not to be a statistic. I see you. I see the longing to be. Not just a mother, but a difference maker. I want you to know that you make a difference to your daughter every day. She has grown to be a phenomenal lady. Her attitude is LOT like yours was, so don’t be mad. She is determined to do things her way, but she Knows the way. She knows the way maker, for you taught her. Your son looks at you lovingly, he feels loved, protected, wanted and needed. Just as you feared what the world would be like for Destinee. I now fear what the World will be like for Jaxson, but God. Give him to God, He has the answers. You are a wife now, with an amazing husband, that loves and cherishes you. There are struggles but life is Grand, because you love one another. Remember who you are, remember whose you are. Don’t compare yourself to others, it will only bring out that part of you that you don’t like. The silent insecure person that you strive so hard not to become. BE GREAT. BE MORE. Don’t get things you don’t need only to work a job you don’t like, just to pay the bills. Your family will need you to be THERE to be in the moment. To be Wife, to be Mother to be YOU, FULL Of life, Love, Laughter. To be Authentic. You’ve never tried to keep up with the Jones’ don’t start now. Live your life on your own terms. Succeed. Determine what success looks like to you. When others say you can’t or shouldn’t Succeed and do it anyway. Allow God and God alone to be your guide. Stay sensitive to the voice of the Holy Spirit. You will need His lesson and Guidance many time along the way. There will be many great women and men that you will never have the honor of meeting. Use their words, their actions, their lives, their testimonies as the Catalyst to push you to the greatest you that you can be. Find and walk in your passion. Take your Daughter to Egypt like you promised. Take your son too. Teach him how to see the beauty in all things, all people. to be loving and kind and empathetic. Show your husband you love him. Everyday. It goes a long way in preserving a marriage. Most of all Don’t forget yourself. Don’t become so engrossed in being and doing for everyone else that you forget that you matter too. Oh… stay of social media sites and actually socialize more. Your life and load will be so much lighter because of it. Make sure to walk in your calling, know that even if Man doesn’t acknowledge who God called you to be. That doesn’t mean you are not called. Walk anyway. Remember that at 27 God told you that your training Ground was different. P.S… YOU STILL DON”T DO DIAMONDS!