Close your eyes. Now imagine yourself driving alone at night to your dream destination and you happen to take a wrong turn that leads you to what seems like a dead end. Every number that you would usually dial suddenly does not exist. Terrified of the night, what do you do? Do you turn around, try to navigate your way to your actual destination? Or do you continue driving with the hope that you will find your way? Now, open your eyes, pour yourself a glass of your favourite beverage, burn incense, and soak yourself in a warm bath as I tell you the story of my mind’s trip.
I vividly remember my body moving to a tune that my mind had missed. And I recall my mind catapulting me to a land so far away and cold. A land known by many as depression. Upon arrival, I was confronted by a mysterious door. I observed my arms giving in to curiosity as they fearfully swung the door open. My feet dragged me in and carefully moved to the sheer rhythm of my mind. The deeper we went in, the darker it became. I looked back in desperation to get out. My mind attempted to trick me into believing that this was our new home. But the remains of my senses hinted that this was the darkest valley Psalm 23 verse 4 talks about. It was so dark I lost sight of myself. A faithful prayer warrior snatched by the thief of the night.
Rotten and worn out, a new me arose. Infested with anxiety, insecurity and immobility – she had me screaming in desperation for God. I have never felt so alone in my life. Voices from foreign corners started speaking, each claiming to be God. And as I drew nearer to these gods the fear intensified and on some nights it choked me until I could not breathe. With this crippling fear, I opened up to the gods regardless because any whispering sound felt more comforting than the demonic tunes that were constantly playing in the background. I listened carefully as I moved closer to the voices and although I was not familiar with them it turned out I knew them. They were all echoes of my suppressed brokenness and anger bawling for healing. At this point on my journey, all that I saw was darkness. I gave up on the idea of ever coming out alive. I fell to my knees and wept while my lips were weeping for healing from every possible idea of who God was.
I started counting days, weeks and months in this place until one day I woke up to the epiphany that what I thought was rock bottom was actually the fall I needed to bounce back to my true self. You see, I was running my race to destiny with an injured soul. And I kept pressing forward with the pace of everyone around me, forgetting that we are all running our individual races. The darkness was actually my light because had I not been depressed I would have continued running and would have eventually collapsed after a couple of laps, risking my chances of winning the race. This fall was necessary; it saved me from bleeding onto people who had not cut me. It showed me the many forms of me that needed to die so I could birth the woman I wanted to become. It was the stretch my mind needed for the journey ahead. So it turned out, after all, that the “dead end” was actually part of the journey leading me to my dream destination. And that God was indeed with me with His rod and staff comforting me throughout the valley.