He's still workin' on me to make me what I ought to be.
It took Him just a week to make the moon and stars,
The sun and the earth and Jupiter and Mars.
How loving and patient He must be, He's still workin' on me.

There really ought to be a sign upon my heart,
"Don't judge her yet, there's an unfinished part."
But I'll be perfect just according to His plan
Fashioned by the Master's loving hands.

He's still workin' on me to make me what I ought to be.
It took Him just a week to make the moon and stars,
The sun and the earth and Jupiter and Mars.
How loving and patient He must be, He's still workin' on me.

In the mirror of His Word reflections that I see
Make me wonder why He never gave up on me.
He loves me as I am and helps me when I pray
Remember He's the Potter, I'm the clay.

He's still workin'on me to make me what I ought to be.
It took Him just a week to make the moon and stars,
The sun and the earth and Jupiter and Mars.
How loving and patient He must be, He's still workin' on me.

Wednesday, January 6, 2010

The "D" Word


It’s a dirty, dirty word but I feel the need to talk about it anyway. DEPRESSION. Here’s some statistics to get started:
*Depressive disorders affect approximately 18.8 million American adults 18 and over.
*Everyone will, at some time in their life be affected by depression…their own or someone else’s
*Pre -schooler’s are the fastest growing market for antidepressants. Over 1 million are clinically depressed
*30% of women are depressed
*54% of people believe depression is a personal weakness
*41% of depressed women are too embarrassed to seek help
*80% of depressed people are not currently having any treatment
*92% of African American males do not seek treatment
*15% of depressed people will commit suicide
*Depression will be the second largest killer after heart disease by 2020
*10% of pregnancies result in Post Partum Depression
*In the U.S. alone, businesses may spend anywhere from 12 to 70 billion dollars caring for or paying for the medical expenses of employees that have depression

Wow! That’s some pretty serious stuff! So why am I writing about this? In all of my reading, I have found that most medical experts agree that there is a very strong link between obesity and depression. The main point of disagreement is the age old question-Which came first…the chicken or the egg? There is some debate about which causes which and there are also contradicting statistics, but the one thing they are able to agree on is that there is definitely a link. Again, why am I writing about this? I have personally been affected by depression. It first presented as Post partum Depression (PPD) after the birth of our second son, Ezra and then recurred after the birth of Hezekiah. I was diagnosed and treated by my doctor on both occasions. Since their births, I have battled this ugly disease, going for months with no symptoms and then suddenly out of the blue it reappears. During the process of being approved for the Lap Band surgery, I had to undergo a psychological evaluation in which the doctor performing the evaluation deemed me “psychologically sound” to undergo surgery. This was during a particularly good stretch of time. In the last few months leading up to my surgery, I started to struggle once again. After my husband and I talked at length, we decided that it would be best for me to see my doctor and to possibly go on some medication particularly because of the stress I would be under after the surgery. After seeing my doctor, he agreed. I am still currently taking the medication. I am telling this part of my story because I am not ashamed to admit that I struggle from this disease. Too many people, women in particular, suffer in silence and sometimes terrible things happen. Unspeakable things. I did not want my family to suffer because of me. To be honest, I was afraid. I’ve heard all the stories. I’ve listened to the news. I know all about what can happen to women with PPD who go untreated . I loved my family too much not to seek treatment. If you are one of those women, don’t wait any longer. For your sake, for your family’s sake, get help. It’s nothing to be embarrassed about. And if your not one of those that suffer from depression, please learn the warning signs and be diligent in monitoring those you love, especially those at high risk for depression. This includes women and men who are under an unusual amount of stress, women going through menopause, expectant and new mothers, those with a family history of depression, those suffering from a chronic illness such as diabetes, someone who experiences the death of a loved one or the breakup of a romantic relationship.
Diet also plays a key role in the prevention or management of depression. Making sure to get the proper nutrients your body needs is key. A deficiency in essential vitamins and minerals can contribute to depression. Antioxidants such as beta-carotene, vitamin C and E are essential for the body also. Sources of beta-carotene include apricots, broccoli, cantaloupe, carrots, pumpkin, spinach, and sweet potatoes. Vitamin C rich foods are blueberries, broccoli, grapefruit, kiwi, oranges, peppers and strawberries. To get a good dose of Vitamin E, nuts and seeds, vegetable oils, margarine and wheat germ. Also limiting sugary foods and opting for smart carbs such as whole grains, fruits, vegetables and legumes is essential. And last but certainly not least, eat a diet high in protein (which we already know is great for weight loss) . Protein rich foods include turkey, tuna, chicken, beans, peas, lean beef, low fat cheese, fish, milk and yogurt.
I know I’ve covered a lot of information today. But it is important information to know. If I can leave you with anything it’s this…depression is an illness that many people suffer from and there is help available if you seek it out. You don’t have to suffer in silence. There are many things you can do to combat the effects of depression. Thanks for reading today and I hope I’ve helped someone.

1 comment:

tamerakitten said...

Andrea-thank you so much for sharing this. It's nice to know I'm not alone, although I don't have PPD-just the run of the mill kind.
I think depression is a "dirty" word in some christian circles. How can we be depressed? We've got the joy of the Lord!!! And yet, we can still find ourselves out in the desert.
I think a lot of depression in caused by chemical/hormonal imbalances. With Fibromyalgia, your brain doesn't make or can't use seratonin-which is HUGE in regulating mood and appetite. Taking anti-depressants made a huge difference in my pain levels, sleep cycles and mood. It's the pills or I'm a lump in the bed.