I like to walk around because it helps me to clear my head of the thoughts that clutter it up so much of the time: all that movement, rhythmic motion, all that breath, takes me out of myself somehow. I can’t say I always notice the world around me, but I do try to.
This is not a post about theology, or the Bible, or anything
bigger or other than me. If you come here only for the sometimes strange things
I say while I’m thinking about God and the Bible, you might want to skip this
It was a nice day out, warm for the time of year and sunny,
so I decided to go for a long walk. I walked out to around Oka park, along the
bike path that runs near my house. I’m fortunate to live so close to this long
trail through the forest. I went all the way out to one of my favorite spots, a
somewhat isolated pond off the main path through a small trail. I followed the
trail to a white birch tree so I could sit in its hollow and look at the water.
The trees have lost their leaves, and everything was still and quiet.
I looked at a dead, fallen tree dangling its leafless
branches in the still water. In some ways I feel like the tree, not all the way
in and not all the way out of life, of living. Partway under the surface. I
thought about walking into the water, feeling the pond slip over me like a tree
falling under the calm surface, carried by its weight further under the deep
waters. I imagined what it would be like, how easy it would feel, to fall
asleep beneath the unbroken silver of the pond.
But the water is cold this time of year. And I figured not
wanting to die in cold water was reason enough to go back home and leave the
white birch tree alone where it had fallen.
The thing is that I’m experiencing a major depressive
episode. I’m trying to live my life exactly the way I normally do, but I don’t
know what to expect. I don’t know if that’s the right decision or not, or if it
will be possible as I fall deeper into this illness. While I have adapted to
years of chronic, stable depression, I have never been prepared for these major
episodes and I am not prepared now. I am having symptoms that are unusual for
I want to thank you for supporting me and keeping me in your
thoughts and prayers as I know you’ve been doing. I also want to thank you for
reading this blog: writing it, and knowing that I’m not the only person here
reading it, is important to me in ways that I hadn’t realized until I began to
really struggle with whether or not I should – or could, or can – continue writing
it. I started this project because I felt compelled to think seriously about my
own depression and my own spirituality and theology as aspects of my life that
are intertwined. But it has helped me feel more connected to myself, more sure
of my beliefs, and less alone as I struggle with these questions and search for
meaning in what I find is happening to me.
Your support means a lot to me , and I hope to have you with me here (and elsewhere) throughout this journey.