(March 19, 2010)

A few days ago my counselor suggested that the mood problems I’ve been having – the apparent depressed episodes – might actually be anger. She may be right. There are lots of things bothering me and frustrating me now-a-days. But how do you tell the difference?

The very focus of my life’s work, reducing stigma, is a frustrating problem. I know I will never win the war. And yet it is my hope that I will win some battles. It is my hope and prayer that at least a few will benefit and that a few more will learn and repent of the way they have been treating the topic of mental illness. It is my prayer that people will be educated and become more understanding and compassionate.

But yesterday the futility of my efforts came home to me by a comment a fellow writer made on my writing. In my article I had shown the importance of treating the whole person – physical, psychological, and spiritual. This person underlined “psychological” and wrote beside it “not scriptural.”

Normally that wouldn’t have hit me so hard. This person has written other things I should have been upset about but wasn’t. But yesterday I also talked to a counselor in our writer’s group who expressed how and why what I had undertaken was such a big job. And just hearing that overwhelmed me.

Now I have a general down mood. Call it depression, anger or frustration. Don’t really know what it is. I just know I need a beer to settle me down. I know. Not good to self-medicate with alcohol. Yet I need to do “something” and I’m finding it hard to pray. Am I angry at God too? No, I don’t think so. Just don’t feel very close to Him at the moment.

And yet I need my God and long for Him.