It’s called postpartum depression.
It’s a depression that occurs after childbirth. I struggled with it for a while but didn’t know what to call it. It’s not the kind of thing that new mother’s like to talk about. There’s something about it that makes you feel shame. Having a child should be a happy time in life, but for me it wasn’t, and I knew something was wrong.
I had been prescribed anxiety medications and they weren’t managing my anxiety or my depression. I didn’t know what to do. I would wait until my husband got home from work to leave the house and go out and get drunk. I was doing whatever I could to make myself happy but nothing was working.
I didn’t want to die, I just wanted someone to help me. One day in an act of desperation, I swallowed all of my anxiety medication then called my husband and told him what I’d done. He rushed home. Heavily sedated from the pills, in and out of consciousness, I woke up to find myself in the hospital. After stabilizing me, the attending physician wanted to release me, instructing me to call my psychiatrist for continued care. That wasn’t good enough for me. I was desperate, I was crying out for help, so I admitted myself for mental health treatment. I remained at the hospital until my release one week later. Before my departure, a person at the hospital gave me a piece of advice saying, “Go home and find a church.”
God was working behind the scenes.
For months before that event, God was preparing our family for what was to come. In hindsight, I can see groundwork was being laid for our hearts to be open to God’s call. As a result of all that we’d been through, my husband was considering divorce. He simply did not know what else to do. All the while, he is going to his place of employment and a co-worker is listening to sermons on the radio. God is amazing! Simultaneous to considering divorce, my husband is being exposed to the Word of God. At some point, he asked the co-worker what God thought about divorce. The conversation began and so did my husband’s prayers.
My husband was one who would never set foot in the church.
He was against it, but God was drawing him. When I began noticing him reading the Bible I asked what he was doing and said, “We don’t do that.” May 2011 after I was released from the hospital, my husband got on his knees and prayed, “God save my marriage and save my wife.” My husband surrendered his life to Jesus Christ and we began going to church. He trusted God to restore our marriage. Shortly after, I was moved by the Holy Spirit and surrendered my life as well. We were both baptized one month later.
God brought us to a church and we started our spiritual journey there. I had many obstacles to overcome. During the ensuing years I struggled with the assurance of my salvation. I had nagging insecurities about whether I was saved and a spirit of condemnation laid heavy on me. I struggled while reading my Bible and remember telling God I didn’t like reading it. I was offended with my pastor, didn’t want to go to church anymore and ultimately, I had to admit I was angry with God.
God was speaking to me.
In early 2015 I was looking at Bible studies online when God led me to Love God Greatly (LGG). It was through this ministry that God began to grow me spiritually starting with the Made for Community Bible study. It was then I realized I had a big ego and was embattled in fleshly desires. My thoughts were focused on myself. Through the study, God revealed to me my lack of humility, and I grasped my need to surrender my preferences and consider God’s will for my life. In time it became abundantly clear to me that my pastor and my church weren’t the problem. In brokenness I came to understand that I was the problem. As I worked through the Made for Community Bible study, one of the first things God began to deal with was my critical spirit. I had been fully prepared to leave the church, but as God began to chip away at my prideful attitudes, my heart changed toward my church family. God used my church to set my family on a spiritual journey. There we encountered sweet fellowship, we were discipled well and we learned about forgiveness. I knew I was forgiven and in turn needed to forgive others. Slowly, I began to heal from past hurts.
God changed my heart.
I developed a love for God and for His Word, which I consistently examined through the LGG Bible studies of 2015.
God continued to bring truth in my foundation, revealing areas in my life needing change. I came to see being in God’s Word is neither an obligation nor a burden, but it is actually a gift. To this day, I have not stopped sharing with women that they must be in the Word of God.
The passion of Love God Greatly is to get God’s Word into women’s hands. Their passion is now my passion.
The different issues I’ve struggled with speak to women today. Depression touches many lives with more than a few women suffering with postpartum depression after childbirth. Often those afflicted suffer in silence, feeling hopeless and helpless. Women need a healing touch from Jesus. I pray as I share my story, others will find there is hope. For me, I still get depressed. It is a long, often difficult process to work through, but God is in the trial, and I overcome through Him. I’ve prayed for ways to share what God is doing in and through me. I’ve prayed that I may, in some way, help others. Sharing my story at Love God Greatly has been an answer to prayer. It’s not just my story; it’s God’s story.
In the same way, the gospel is bearing fruit and growing throughout the whole world—
just as it has been doing among you since the day you heard it and truly understood God’s grace.
Miranda Inscore, Nashville, TN
Post written by Joan, LGG Leadership Team Member