Letters from Madelyn – Chapter 15
“Madelyn Gets Depressed”
Finding your authentic self is a phrase that can seem trite, especially if you are caregiver. In today’s chapter of “Letters from Madelyn”, my mother experiences an episode of reactionary caregiver depression when she reads the book, “Simple Abundance”. The strategies the author offered for “finding your authentic self” seemed utterly absurd to Madelyn. After coming to the conclusion that the author is a young woman and knows absolutely nothing about being old or being a caregiver, Madelyn starts to recall what her life was like when she was in her 30’s and the Women’s Liberation Movement was just getting started.
Like most women who have lived and loved, raised a family and cared for an ill spouse, my mother understood that she wasn’t going to get in touch with her “authentic self” by dreaming about houses and trips or tucking bonbons and scented candles away in a drawer to get her through a bad day. It’s about about reaching deep within your core and finding the strength, courage and faith you need to face the hardest, most frightening and frustrating challenges that life can put in your path.
Caregiver depression can’t always be controlled with prayer or positive thinking. If you are experiencing clinical depression, you cannot eat, drink, smoke, think, talk or pray your way out of it. Clinical depression is a medical problem that manifests itself as a mental disorder. It requires medical attention. If you feel like you are on a downward slide and you simply cannot imagine anything positive in the future, if you’ve experienced suicidal thoughts, and if you have felt this way for more than two weeks, please call your doctor today and get immediate medical attention.
If you’re in a funk and need a little inspiration to help you get through a tough day, I hope you’ll listen to this episode about Madelyn’s ongoing battle with caregiver depression and what she had to say about being your authentic self.
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