Three days ago, a familiar, but now infrequent, feeling began to come upon me: mild depression. As the hours wore on, it became deeper, until the evening before yesterday, I was in quite the pit of despair, wondering why I was even alive, thinking that nothing I did really made a difference.
It had been threatening for a few weeks, at odd moments coming down on me briefly, but with enough pressure to make itself known. Like the day that I got an e-mail from a fellow self-published author – much more successful than I – announcing that Hallmark was going to turn one of her book series into a T.V. show.
I had to fight off envy, tooth and nail.
I need to take a detour for a moment, because if you look over in the right sidebar, you’ll see that I have a book entitled The Cure For Mental Illness? And you’re going to see it and think that I don’t know what I’m talking about, that I’m some kind of fraud trying to sell a book about natural treatments for mental illness when I still get depressed myself.
First of all, the book is free. Always has been, always will be, unless Jeff Bezos one day forces me to put a price on it. And then it will still be free on this blog and in other online book stores.
Second of all, as I state in the book, there really is no “cure” for depression. People who suffer from mental illness have to daily fight to keep their brain chemistry in balance.
Third, I also state in the book that I do have occasional relapses, but that I experience depression with much less frequency – and usually much less intensity – than I used to. Therefore, I will stand by the information I provide in the book.
What had been gradually happening to me over the past few weeks, I’m certain, was a drop in estrogen. And a couple of days ago, it took a drastic drop. I believe this because I have now gone more than sixteen weeks without a menstrual period, longer than the last time I went without one in 2017.
Menopause may be upon me.
When estrogen plummets, so do serotonin levels in the brain. Apparently, my brain chemistry got so out of whack that even my religious use of natural remedies couldn’t keep me from falling into depression.
And from becoming convinced that life is void of any true purpose. And if it is, why do I work so hard when I don’t need to?
The next morning, I was ready to delete my YouTube channel – yeah, the one with around 700 videos uploaded since 2011 – quit writing anything, blog posts or fiction; and even delete my Amazon account!
By lunchtime that day, I was back to normal. No, I was better than normal. I actually felt happy. I hadn’t taken a 5-HTP supplement or taken a single sniff of a serotonin-increasing essential oils. I had taken my morning magnesium and vitamin B6 as usual, like I’ve been doing every day for a while now, and as I did the previous two mornings when the depression came on.
In other words, I had done nothing special to get my brain chemistry back in balance.
This was nothing new. Used be, back when I experienced regular menstrual cycles, I would have a day a week before, or a few hours before, my period would start, when I would get depressed and possibly get into a raging mood for about three hours. Then, all of a sudden, boom, I’d be my usual semi-calm, optimistic self.
However, this time was scarier because it lasted so much longer.
But even though I snapped out of it, my psyche was still experiencing the residual effects of all the negativity that had bombarded my brain for the past forty-eight hours.
And Yeshua knew it. And so, He laid it on my heart to e-mail my subscriber list. I did, and in that e-mail I provided a link to a blog post I wrote last year on my other blog about moving through the holidays when they remind you of the loss of a loved one.
Within a few hours, two of my lovely subscribers replied to that e-mail. One of them, a lady, let me know that the article had blessed her. Another one, a man who is wiser in years than I, told me he was “convinced” that my latest series, “Pine Mountain Estates”, should be made into a movie.
A Hallmark movie. His words, not mine.
The Lord knew I needed to know that I am making a difference in people’s lives, that I have purpose, and that people are enjoying my work. And at the exact right time, He encouraged two of my fans to reach out to me.
God is good, all the time.
Even if Hallmark never discovers me.
Merry Christmas. 🙂