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Photo Credit © SuperStock/Corbis

Photo Credit © SuperStock/Corbis

It may seem obvious, but every blog posted here is a piece of me and my heart. Sometimes my thoughts and feelings spin out of control and my heart begs me to sit in my chair and write the mess. As painful as it is, it’s always worth it when I begin to see the pieces of a healed picture snapping in place. I trust you with my journey—thank you for trusting me with yours.

My last blog post I wrote about depression—my depression. And it was one of those blog posts that received a weighty response. No, not the, I’ve-gone-viral-and-I’ll-be-on-Ellen-next-week kind of response. Honestly, I could probably fill up my living room with the number of people who responded to me (and just the thought of that sounds like a lovely idea, doesn’t it?) It wasn’t about how many; it was the way in which I received the responses.

Perhaps it is the season of life I’m currently in, but that blog seemed to generate a unique manner of responses than those of other blog posts. The responses came privately. See, depression still has a stigma attached to it. Even I felt a bit daring to blog about it in the present tense. Depression is a lonely issue, and yet millions suffer from it.

The responses I received came in the form of private messages and for some, they pulled me aside in person and spoke in quiet tones all to say,

“Me too.”

Me too; two tiny words that hold the power to change my world—and your world. Really, you too? Funny, cause’ I always thought it was just me. Not so. Many people suffer from depression. Probably the person you’re sitting next to you is battling the blues in one way or another. For some it comes in waves, for others it could be based on circumstance, and still others depression is ongoing. It’s an epidemic that most people feel frighteningly alone in, and yet with those kinds of numbers we aren’t alone, are we?

The private and personal reactions from those courageous souls spoke volumes to me. And for the first time in a very long time I remembered three things:

  1. The power of vulnerability.
  2. There is purpose to the pain
  3. I’m not alone—and neither are you.

You and I—we are the same. Your journey is distinct and unique, your circumstances unlike any other, yet we are the same; humans going through this life fighting battle after battle with this sometimes overwhelming heavy blanket of depression.

So, now what?

Here’s the thing with blogging. The blog post I write today dies tomorrow. Not because I take it off my website, but because that’s the world we live in. The newspaper no longer sits on the coffee table to be perused and picked through at our leisure. A status goes up, a blog is published and everything is old or forgotten within 24 hours, if not sooner. It’s even true to me as a writer of my own blog; I write, process, publish—and move on.

But not this time.

I. Just Can’t Shake. It. After a week of running circles around myself, escaping, numbing, coping—I realize, I can’t move on. In fact, I don’t think I’m supposed to—at least, not by myself.

Here’s the deal.

We need each other.

We really do. We need one another to link arms, hold hands, laugh, cry, love, pray, and encourage one another to live life in spite of it all.

In spite of it all.

Regardless of the mudcrud life slings at us (I’ve had more than enough this week), and not to mention the junk we add to the mess (yep, I’m guilty), we still have a chance to live life. We really do.

And so for the umpteenth time I am learning there is hope. And I thought maybe, just maybe we could journey hope together. Because we both know we can’t do this alone—not without God and not without each other.

Will you join me for the journey? To be completely fair, I do have a motive. It’s two-fold; encouragement and support—for you and for me.

Because we can’t do this life alone.

It’s time I (and maybe you) intentionally choose life.

For the next two weeks I will be posting encouragement and my own Choose Life moments on my Facebook page in real time. Be sure to “like” the page in order to see the updates. I will also expand more here on the blog, so if you haven’t already, please subscribe to receive updates via email. Please be free to share your own journey here on the blog or on the Facebook page. Let’s choose life {together}.

If you are not someone who suffers from some level of depression—yes, you are welcome here, after all everyone needs encouragement, right? But I hope you will also consider forwarding this blog to someone who is struggling. Please, pass hope on.

I hope you will join me. Let’s link arms together and choose life.

On the journey of life {together},