For Sharon, depression is not an illness; it’s a lifetime companion and long-fought struggle. She doesn’t recall not being depressed and doesn’t remember ever feeling true happiness. Therefore, it was her comfort zone to be depressed and stay depressed until she reached a point where life is not interesting for her anymore and she wants
For Sharon, depression is not an illness; it’s a lifetime companion and long-fought struggle. She doesn’t recall not being depressed and doesn’t remember ever feeling true happiness. Therefore, it was her comfort zone to be depressed and stay depressed until she reached a point where life is not interesting for her anymore and she wants to be dead. Her family got used to knowing her as depressed and having a very low tolerance for everything.
Deep inside, Sharon hated this. She wanted to be around her family more, she wanted to be a fun part of their lives, but could not simply get over her depression and join them. The easy solution was to leave her out.
Sharon did her homework and started seeking help early on. She tried every medication prescribed to her by her doctors, but nothing seemed to work for long enough. She constantly felt like a walking zombie on her medications. She hated taking them but felt she had no other choice.
Then, one day her doctor recommended TMS as an alternative to her failing meds. Sharon was so excited to possibly finally have hope. She signed on to start treatment immediately.
Unlike many others, Sharon did not have many reservations about the results. She just wanted to feel better and was willing to wait. Waiting was something she had gotten used to, as she was seemingly forever depressed.
Sharon started treatment feeling anxious, but full of hope. After a few weeks, her depression was so resistant that she didn’t feel much better. But just when she was about to lose her small glimmer of hope, something unexpected happened. Sharon had a stroke and was rushed to the emergency room.
She woke up in the hospital the next day feeling numb all over the right half of her body. She noticed a very strange feeling tickling her and noticed at her daughter falling asleep on the chair by her bed. Although she was looking very exhausted, Sharon couldn’t help but observe how beautiful her daughter looked.
“I felt lighter, relaxed and happy deep inside despite the situation and my physical malfunction,” Sharon said. “I couldn’t believe myself. I woke up my daughter and told her that I loved her. She looked at me puzzled and replied ‘I love you too, mom!’ That very special moment made me feel 20 years younger, full of hope, optimism, energy, and best of all, happiness.”
Sharon was discharged from the hospital the next day. She went to see her doctor and gave him the news. “It finally worked! My depression is gone despite my hemiplegia! I am now feeling happy for the first time in my life!”
Within a few weeks, Sharon was able to move around easier, get back on her feet and restore her mobility through physiotherapy. She also got her family back and they now spend more time together and enjoy it. Her granddaughter says she got her grandmother back as well.
Sharon decided to share her story to let other’s suffering from depression know that they shouldn’t lose hope. “Everything is possible and God has his own timing,” Sharon said. “It’s never too late to try to seek help. You cannot see a rainbow if you keep looking down.”
By Sarah Elsadre, MD