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Sunday, August 15, 2010

Depression is an Every Day Matter of Rededication

I realized today that I must rededicate myself, every single day, to those human qualities that I prize. I'm never going to be "finished" in that I never will be completely honest, rational, humble, gracious, "right," loving, spiritual, self-understanding, mature, patient, grateful, emotionally secure. My efforts to keep myself moving in the right direction of these psychological and spiritual qualities are the same as my efforts to keep myself physically fit by exercising and eating properly. I can't ever consider myself "done" with exercising my physical body. I don't know why I never thought before that I'm not done working on those other things as well.

Sometimes it's downright discouraging to think you'll never finish. But then, what would we do as a "finished" person. Who the heck would want to hang out with us?

It reminds me of an old story I read somewhere about perfect grammar. We all know it's correct to say "It is I" rather than "It's me." But someone once said, If I heard a knock on my door and asked, "Who is it?" and they answered, "It's I" instead of "It's me," I wouldn't let them in. Intimating that who the heck wants to spend time with somebody so perfect. At some point I guess perfect becomes boring.

Depression is the same. Would you really like to be close friends with someone who was 100% happy all the time? Yuk, how boring. We're never going to be "finished" with depression. It wouldn't be natural. We have to make the choices every day that lead us away from it. But the possibility that it exists adds value and depth to our lives. It's another thing that reminds us that we need each other.

That doesn't mean we should be content with being in agony with depression. We want to get out of the pain of depression as soon as we can. But being emotionally balanced is like being physically fit. We're never finished balancing. Just like physical exercise of our body, mental exercise of our mind needs to be a continuing effort if we are to be emotionally fit.
A. B. Curtiss

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