There were multiple levels of environmental causation for this as well as spiritual causation from my losing my dad and not having any males in the family step in and be my mentor and father figure to my being under God's reproof for my pride, stubbornness, idleness, selfishness, and unthankfulness. My mental illness took the form of major depressive disorder, panic disorder, and generalized anxiety disorder that I know of and perhaps others I don't yet realize.
I have turned back to God and I am doing ever better on all fronts, spiritual, mental-emotional-psychological, physical, social, academic, etc. This is not to say I don't experience up and downs and plateaus and an occasional two-steps-backward-to-get-three-steps-forward any different than anybody else. However, at least I am in a consistently healthy place yet with room to improve in some areas that continue to bedevil me and yet I am still ever growing and evolving.
This morning at church I was reading my Bible in a freelance fashion (in the cafe, NOT the sanctuary during the service) and opened to this passage and was blown away by it as it caused me to recall that dark place I know so well but have not been in for some time now, thank God. I am dividing this up into two parts for the sake of functionality on this blog and ease of perusal for you, the reader. This first part offers an insight into the place I was during those dark years, a place which I realize others have been in although in a different context and for a different purpose. The Second Part offers the upshot resolution to my ongoing story, to wit, what I had to do to get back on track with God.
"I am the man who has seen troubles by the rod of His wrath.
He has led me and brought me into darkness, but not into light.
Surely against ME is He turned; His hand is turned against me all day long.
My flesh and my skin has he made old: He has broken all my bones.
He has besieged me and surrounded me with bitterness and travail.
He has banished me into a dark place as one who has been long dead.
He has walled me in so that I cannot escape. He has placed heavy chains upon me.
Also, when I cry and shout out to Him for help, He shuts out my prayers.
He has placed roadblocks of hewn stone in my path, he has made my paths crooked.
He was unto me as a bear stalking me, as a hidden lion crouching.
He has derailed me and torn me asunder and left me in ruin.
He has drawn down upon me with his bow and targeted me with his arrows.
He has caused the arrows of his quiver to enter into my heart.
I was a derision to all my people and their taunt all the day long.
He has filled me with bitterness, made me drunk with gall.
He has shattered my teeth with gravel, buried me in ashes.
You removed me far away from peace: I forgot what prosperity felt like.
I said to myself: "My strength from and my hope in God have died",
When I remembered my affliction and misery along with the bitterness and gall.
I still remember all of this and am humbled.
My memory of it all gives me hope."
~Lamentations 3:1-21 (Kimicus ad Absurdum translation)