"Losses impose heavy burdens upon us. Under the weight of the burdens we may find ourselves in a deep, dark, lonely place. This book is about the experience of loss when it becomes utterly overwhelming. This book tells how, amid the shattered bits of our broken selves we can uncover divine sparks, and with them bring light to others. This book acknowledges that even in the grip of suffering we can choose: choose to listen to the message of hope, choose to craft our identity, choose to accept a worldview of faith in the good of the world, and choose to discuss our calling in healing the world..."
"As shattered vessels we hold fast to shards that can reflect the light of a good world into the dark corners of souls in despair. Our experiences in a place of darkness leave us forever changed, mindful of the comfort a listener can bring. Our time spent suffering teaches us that a thoughtful listener can lighten the burdens that overwhelm us. Our own moments of pain show us that a caring listener is a blessing. Through our own despair, we may become a source of comfort and hope to others. In the words of the Big Book of Alcoholics Anonymous, this simple but paradoxical truth is expressed as follows:
"Showing others who suffer how we were given help is the very thing which makes life so worthwhile to us now. Cling to the thought that, in God's hands, the dark past is the greatest possession you have--the key to life and happiness for others. With it, you can avert death and "misery for them."What it means to me is this: Rather than grieving for all the years I lost due to repeated depressive episodes, I no longer have to feel the losses has been in vein. The very fact that I've survived is enough.
And rather than dwelling on whatever I feel I haven't accomplished, I can offer great thanks for what I have. To know that beneath my darkness, misery, and loneliness are "divine sparks," that will "lighten the burden of others" is a true blessing. And for that I can be deeply grateful!
FYI...On Beyond Meds, I just read a wonderful article called The Value of Depression by retired psychologist Al Galves. I highly recommend it.