Wednesday, November 5, 2014

Kindness Begins With Me

Depression surrounds me. It seems like everyone I know and love is suffering through this disease. I find it so heartbreaking, especially when I can't do anything to help because of distance and other factors.  I have never truly had depression myself, but there have been times when I have temporarily felt broken and hopeless. Those were the darkest times.
It is in human nature to want to feel loved, included, and thought of. We desire to be part of something more; something bigger than us. I doubt that anyone has gone through life without feeling alone at one point. In middle school, you find yourself. Or at least you try to. It might take years. You might never truly find yourself (though I hope that everyone will at some point in their life). I think that is what scares us the most. Uncertainty. My Family Life and Human Developments class has been focusing on adolescents and how children truly need security and certainty in their home life. They need fathers and mothers who will teach them, lead them, trust them, and love them. But it isn't only children who need this; adults need to be taught, lead, trusted, and loved too.
It rarely takes very much time to listen. I am talking TRULY listening to someone else. Listen to their stories, whether they be sad or happy. Listen to their cries and complains, even if they might be slightly melodramatic. The situation might seem so small and meaningless to you,  but you better bet that it is completely a big deal to them. Listen without talking, judging, or giving advice because sometimes it is just nice to have someone LISTEN for once. When you give up that time, setting aside those distractions that aren't really all THAT important, it shows how much you care. That act alone can bring a glimmer of hope into another's heart.
Be considerate. Everyone is going through inner struggles. Some are bigger than others, but each are very significant to those who face those struggles. Snide remarks, sarcastic comments, judging glances: Let's get rid of those. Replace them with kind words, thoughtful responses, bright smiles, and loving compliments. You never know who is trapped inside the darkness that has consumed their minds. Look up from the screens, take out your earphones, stop tweeting (sub-tweeting) about other people, and learn to love one another; there is a reason why it is one of God's greatest commandments. Take time to get to know someone you never thought you would ever talk to. Sit by someone who is alone. Include everyone. Be inviting (because truthfully, why should anyone be expected to "invite themselves" to activities?). Seek to strengthen yourself spiritually so you will be more in tune to promptings from the spirit. Pray for those that you think might need a little pick me up. Heck, you can even stop by and bring them a homemade treat. Who wouldn't feel special after that? Speak out loud those compliments that you might be thinking, especially to strangers. Who would it hurt?
 I have seen what depression does; how it works. Depression is scary; it's consuming; it's a daily struggle that doesn't necessarily ever go away. I watch as those I love fight this disease everyday, hoping for at least one moment of happiness to take away the pain. I hear their silent cries for help, but I can only do so much. There is a fine line between helping your loved ones, and getting sucked into the darkness of their depression. BUT there are ways to help, slowly but surely. And a great way to bring light unto the broken-hearted is to share with them the gospel. Even members need to be strengthened spiritually and uplifted through your testimony. Spread His light. Spread YOUR light. because...
"Kindness begins with me."

1 comment:

  1. You have a truly amazing insight for someone so young. You must have an old spirit! LuvU!