Doing Life in the Prison cell of your mind

You know when convicted criminals go into prison and it’s called ‘Life?
Have you ever really thought about what that word really means and the implications of the word Life?  Well,  Life is a strong word. It contains so much weight. It’s the definition of living. Life for criminals means adapting to a new way of living. A life without freedom and a life without the freedom to make their own decisions and choices. Criminals who have killed and maimed will never experience their own desires again, as long as they are serving Life in prison. And they may well deserve this Life sentence for their crimes, but Life in prison is not easy. Contained in a small cell, it’s not for the faint hearted and only few will see it through. Ironically, this is the same experience for people on the outside too.
 When a baby comes into this world for the first time, she starts a new Life sentence. I say ‘sentence’ because she also has no choice in where she is born into and she will have to learn to adapt and grow within her chosen family. Thankfully, nearly all of the population cherishes these gifts from God and they aspire to do a great job in helping these little mites fit into our great planet Earth. But like the criminals in prison, a lot of human beings struggle with Life on the outside.
I myself, had struggled with Life for my first 45 years. I suffered with depression. Of course, there were reasons I had depression and yes it developed in my childhood years, so as a young adult, I realized I needed to go to some self help classes. As the years went on, I was unable to unscramble the clouds in my head and live happily in my ‘Life sentence’. My behavior became angry and tearful, sad and resentful. And as my struggles with life was worsening, my behavior became erratic and my mind and body began to feel ill. Don’t get me wrong, for all of my adult years, I was continuously trying so hard to become normal, to live my life peacefully and happily. I went to many good counsellors and when my last child Yasmin was born eleven years ago, I had to go on antidepressants.
Life of course has many challenges for people and it may seem that some get too much to bear, as in a prison cell.
  When my child was diagnosed with lots of difficulties among other stresses that were going on in my life at the time, I felt my Life was too difficult. I felt I was useless and I felt I was a failure. I completely hated myself. I didn’t want to leave my children, in fact, I was terrified of leaving and abandoning them at all. And even though I never planned a suicide, I found myself writing two letters. One to my Solicitor stating my wishes for my children and one to my youngest child’s God parent also stating my wishes for her God child. I also left a note for my husband and kids in my diary which I printed in my book ‘My Beautiful flower’.
I never went through any sequence of suicide in my head.  I would never consciously hurt my Mother or any of my family by taking my own life. But I was totally afraid of what my mind was capable of doing because it was in such mental pain.
 Then something happened. I noticed how much pain Yasmin was in as I performed normal daily routines like teeth and face washing, as she had severe sensory difficulties. She would scream in agony but trusted me to continue. It was the same in every little thing she did, like learning, playing and social activities. She wanted to be the same as her friends, so she trudged on.  I looked at this little five year old coping with physical and brain challenges. She was learning. No matter how painful a task was or no matter how hard it was, she continued on. I realized there and then that she was sent to me for a reason. To show me how it’s done. I truly believe that God sent me Yasmin as a gift, to help me.
I then began to help myself. I had to figure myself out and unscramble the clouds in my brain.
I was able to discover how to live in my Life and thankfully, I am still here.
Sadly, there are thousands of people around the world everyday ending their pain of Life. I don’t think there’s the right qualifications just yet to treat people in this pain. It’s missed so easily at the moment in the medical practice. I know myself that I wouldn’t go to see the doctor when I was really bad, I didn’t want anyone to see me in that state. So, I took someone else’s anti depressants to help me for a couple of weeks before I went to the Doctor.
 There’s still an enormous amount of embarrassment and shame attached to depression. Families are left blaming themselves when their loved one takes their own life. But if you realize that the person is suffering with a type of cancer of the brain, you might realize how serious depression is. Remember, there is also a huge chemical imbalance in the brain that eats away at you, just like a cancer. And doctors may see a patient looking physically well and completely misdiagnose it.  People suffering this severe type of depression are just in a state of severe mental pain and they are full of self hatred and shame for their misconceived weakness. If they could live their Life in their prison cell of their mind and cause you no anguish, they would do so for sure.
But a Life sentence of mental pain and torture is worse than any Life behind bars.
Jean xx

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