Hope Inside Out
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Hope Inside Out
Approaching Depression with Purposeful Hope
Published:
4/12/2017
Format:
Perfect Bound Softcover
Pages:
108
Size:
5.5x8.5
ISBN:
978-1-51278-183-0
Print Type:
B/W
Could anything good come from a place of brokenness? In HOPE Inside Out, Julie Thomas offers a compelling interpretation of a real time battle with depression. The indelible stories of her raw struggle with depression, present a hope that equips us to reshape the way one could come at the perplexities of depression. Do we have to strive to escape from depression? Or is there a way to overcome it with hope? HOPE Inside Out will tell you, there is! Julie understands this battle from a personal level seeing as she has had to walk through it all – the fears, pains and shame. She points us to God and draws a defining connect between our own vulnerabilities and the vulnerabilities of some of our Bible heroes. She motivates us to call out the stigma of mental illness and kindles a hope for the future, in us and through us. No doubt, we all want freedom from the scourging mental agony. But, what if an imminent exit is not available? Join Julie, as she takes us through the route of approaching depression, from the inside-out !

- For over five years, I lived in fear and dread. I went to bed dreading the dawn of the morning hours. I woke up in dread. Many, many days passed where dread was my escort. Every day I woke up with a knot in my stomach. I lived every minute in the anticipation that something dreadful was about to unfold. I lived in constant dread, watching for the arrival of the next dreadful event. These accounts that I share, none of them were conjured up. This was how I was living out my days. I tried almost unrelentingly to convince myself of the contrary. "I don't have to be afraid. I don't have to feel this way." Without question, I did not want to feel this way. If you could imagine how miserable it would be to live life this way, especially when you are not able to present evidence or reasonable grounds for feeling this way. But the feeling was every bit as real as breathing is to you and me.

- I did not know what I was running from. I just knew I needed to get away...I now realize that I was running away from whatever was tormenting me...When the running was exhausted, I hid. In the dark of my closet, under my clothes. Desperately, screaming into a pillow to muffle the sound. Yearning for all this to pass. It was terribly painful to live with myself, with the depression, the pain, the shame! More often than not, where there's depression, there is shame. But, depression and shame, do not have to go hand in hand.

- Over the past five years of my struggle with depression, I battled a lot with my reflection. I had reached a mark of such low self-worth, that I started to shy away from myself. Started to shy away from the "me" in the mirror. I did not think that the person staring back at me was worthy of eye-contact. A fog of fear had clouded my eyes. The "me" staring back seemed blurry, and hazy. I had actually figured out how to locate something wrong with everything about me, appearance, qualification, confidence, and on and on. And I wasn't satisfied with the answer the mirror on the wall rendered back to me.

- I did not know what I was running from. I just knew I needed to get away...I now realize that I was running away from whatever was tormenting me...When the running was exhausted, I hid. In the dark of my closet, under my clothes. Desperately, screaming into a pillow to muffle the sound. Yearning for all this to pass. It was terribly painful to live with myself, with the depression, the pain, the shame! More often than not, where there's depression, there is shame. But, depression and shame, do not have to go hand in hand.

- What is wrong with me? Why am I so useless?

Along the span of the process, I realized I had asked myself these questions before. Out loud and in my conscious mind. What I failed to realize up until this point was that these questions had taken seat in my subconscious, occupying real estate in my mind, gearing the wheels of my thinking to doubt my adequacy. I had, unawares to myself, set myself in the ring, for a boxing match between me and unworthiness. The latter was throwing the majority of the punches.

- ...most depression stories unfold behind stretched-out smiles and behind closed doors, as was mine. None of the episodes of depression that I divulged throughout the book were scripted. I wish I could say they ended in a few hours, days, or months. But no ... these disturbing stories played out for over five long years. They ran on real time, and there were no breaks.

Julie Thomas went from experiencing ordinary days of life and motherhood to the disruptive reality of an over five year long stretch of chronic depression. In light of her own battle behind the veil of shame and fear arose her passion to strip that veil and create awareness in the church and beyond, about the raw struggles of depression. The vulnerability of this wife, mom and life coach inspires us to press forward with purposeful hope, break out of the shadows of depression and reach out to many hurting others, even as we heal. Julie has a PhD in Journalism and Information Sciences. She resides in Dallas, TX with her husband and two sons.
 
 


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