My journey of dealing

Guest Author: Michele

This content contains explicit and sensitive information that may not be suitable for all ages.

For the first eight years of my depression, I managed it-with mediocre success-without the benefit of medication because either the drugs had no effect or the side effects were so horrendous that I could not endure them. By the third relapse, in 2010, I decided to try a different treatment approach. With a rock-solid faith, I voiced a desperate petition to the Universe for help. I knew the Divine Spirit heard me and would come through in Her subtle manner – I had faith. All I needed was to keep all of my senses open and receptive, especially my sixth sense.

My job was to receive Her guidance using all methods available. I focused on opening my heart and soul to be receptive, sharpening my internal knowing skills by tuning in to the Spirit – meditating every morning, paying attending to my dreams, listening closely to what my intuition was picking up, saying yes to the book I needed that all but jumped into my hands as I browsed book shelves in my local book store. I signed up to special courses to sharpen my perceptions and learn how to co-create my reality using law-of-attraction principles. I learned all I could about how the energy world communicates with this Earth-bound spirit.

The act of creating improved the functioning of my brain.

I learned through trial and error that creativity was key to my healing, that the act of creating improved the functioning of my brain. I could feel the difference in my mood and thinking abilities from having spent the day in creative activity compared to a day without. I have since learned that creativity is used quite successfully in many treatments of depression. Try googling “depression creativity treatment” for some fascinating reading.

With the help of a Cognitive Behaviour Therapist (CBT), I flipped my thinking right side up. I worked on building my self-esteem because it had taken quite a beating over the past years, with depression managing my thoughts and adding to the decline of my self-worth. No more!

I was on medical leave because I could no longer cope with my job. By now, I was experiencing generalized anxiety, and gaining control of my thoughts was paramount. My entire focus during this year off was on learning how to get myself well, permanently. I was determined to find a better way, one designed especially for everything that makes up me, including my temperament.

This book became my compass at a time when nothing felt real.

I strengthened my character by practicing self-discipline one tiny step at a time, by doing the next right thing just for this moment, and I adopted and worked on building in virtues that I admired. Matthew Kelly’s “Nine Lessons for Enduring Happiness” found in Perfectly Yourself, were my precious guiding lights. This book became my compass at a time when nothing felt real and I especially needed my world to be solid. And it worked. I am nearing the six-year mark without experiencing depression or anxiety.

Several weeks before returning to work, I was prescribed Cymbalta, a drug that was new on the market and that had not been available during my last foray with antidepressants. I feel extremely fortunate that it worked for me, and how-it improved my life 100 per cent! The difference it made to my outlook, my mood, my thinking capacity, my zest for life, even my work life, was incredible. I was transformed into a different person. I hadn’t felt this vibrant in 20 years. So, when I hear people dismissing antidepressants out of hand, I react. I say, hey, wait a minute. It might not be what you need or want, but my meds have saved my life. So, please don’t throw the baby out with the bathwater… That’s what I say.

My very life was at stake here.

There were some close calls when I returned to my job, but being so attuned to my thoughts and emotions, I was able to abort the downward spiral by asking for help immediately. I treated these alerts like emergencies, because in my world, that’s what they were. My very life was at stake here, and I didn’t fool around with waiting to see if it would develop into depression; I stopped it before it could.

I wrote a book about my experience in which I share the lessons and mechanisms I used to become healthy and happy. If someone could be helped by my exploration and experience, it will have been worth the effort. Since there has to be a better way to treating depression than what I had been offered, which was pretty much nothing.

Good luck to you, dear reader. Reach out. You can’t do it alone, but you alone must do it.




Michele – what a wonderful account. Thank you for the hope. I have tried so many meds that have not worked, perhaps one day I will find one that does work. I would love to read your book. Blessings


Thank you for sharing. I’m still kind of new to this illness. Thank you giving some hope.


Thank you for this inspiring story of determination and sustained recovery! I am in my first cycle of recover that that lasted more than 8 months so you inspire me to believe I too can achieve years without depression and anxiety. Interestingly enough, I also am on a small does of Cymbalta.

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