A post today comes from a first time guest blogger, Amanda Rondeau, who wishes to educate and inspire others on the subject of Mental Health by sharing her personal stories in dealing with depression and post partum depression.
Everyone has a story that has shaped them into who they are today, and this is my story. If I can help even one person with this post then my job is done. Unfortunately, people don’t talk about these things. Either they have too much pride or they don’t want to be judged.
A feeling of denial set in for me and lasted for quite some time, but now I have chosen to talk about my journey. Trust me, I had a lot of pride and never thought I would ever be depressed. I was always a very positive, social, crazy girl, and BOOM it was all taken away from me and all of a sudden I had no control. Losing control for me was so hard, but through it all I forced myself to go to the gym 5 days a week and tried to be social even though I had no desire whatsoever. I thank god everyday for the help and support of my amazing partner Josh, my family, friends, my psychiatrist, my psychologist and my trainer, Guy Soucy. It really takes a number of elements to get through depression and it’s so hard to see the light at the end of the tunnel when you’re in that dark place, but now that I’m out I have that fire inside of me again. I feel like I’m back, and trust me, it’s so nice to be back! It wasn’t easy, but I made it and you can too, you just need to believe in yourself and take charge.
I decided to take charge at the end of November 2014 when my second child was 7 months old. I wasn’t grossly overweight, but I wasn’t happy with myself. I was going to the gym as I always have and not seeing results so I decided to take charge. I met up with Guy Soucy from JIKO fitness and told him that I needed his help. I told him that I only wanted to work out 5 days a week for approximately 1 hour, and take weekends off to spend with my family. He customized the perfect program for me and I started December 1st. My goal was to lose 16 pounds and be back to my comfortable weight pre kids and I just achieved that goal and I’m sooooo proud of myself! Like I said, I’ve worked out my whole life but Guy Soucy has this energy and philosophy that just works. It’s crazy. He also guided me through an app called ‘Lose it’ which is basically a calorie counter that makes you mindful of what you’re eating. It’s a lifestyle change, not a crash diet, which was super appealing to me. I actually workout less and eat more and I’m losing weight. I know it sounds unrealistic but your body is like a vehicle and it needs food to fuel it. No excuses, find the time for you to be happy. Do it for you, not anyone else. As I mentioned previously, exercise was a huge piece of the puzzle, but you need the other pieces as well. Exercise basically made me happier, gave me more energy and helped internally as well.
As we all know, being a mom isn’t an easy job to begin with, but add depression and anxiety to the mix and it makes things 10 times more challenging. Not being able to enjoy my children and suffering from post partum depression took a huge toll on my family and I. But I finally found that fun-loving-full-of-energy Amanda again, and I’ve been cherishing every single moment with my amazing partner and my precious children. I had to let go of the regret of not being able to enjoy them while I was depressed. I made a choice to turn the page and not live in the past and focus on the present and the moment and looking forward to the future.
You have no idea how good it feels to have emotions and not be numb. I can cry again and it feels so darn good! Just the simple things that you start appreciating again.
I had to let go of the regret of not being able to enjoy them while I was depressed.
I’m still on medication and not ashamed of it. It was just another piece of the puzzle. I have been slowly decreasing my dose, however, I will probably stay on a low dose for a while yet. Why not? If it helps, keep on doing it. The good days definitely outweigh the bad days for me since I took charge. Knowing that I am having more and more good days helps me put up with a bad day once in a while as I know everyone has a bad day once in a while.
One thing that has always made me happy in the past was to help others, a gift passed on by my amazing mother. I get a rush for some reason. I know it may sound weird, but it’s the truth. Now that I am back to myself it is my mission to help others and create awareness. If you’re feeling ashamed and hopeless I promise it will get better. You simply need to believe in yourself and take that first step. I did and don’t regret it for one second.
People come into our lives for a reason and I am truly blessed and grateful that Guy Soucy came into my life when he did. Thanks again, Guy, for helping me continue to achieve my fitness goals. I will forever be grateful to you. We all have angels in our lives, we just have to let them in and break down those walls.
A lot of you probably didn’t realize that I was going through a depression since I had my son almost 4 years ago because I tried very hard to put on a brave face. Just goes to show that everyone has a story. So please be kind to people because most of the time we have no clue what they are going through. Just a simple smile can go a long way and make someone’s day.
We all have angels in our lives, we just have to let them in and break down those walls.
Writing my story has actually helped in my healing process as well. I was literally crying like a baby as I wrote this post, so it was definitely a form of therapy for me.
If anyone out there needs to talk please send me a message and I will be more than happy to meet up or chat. As a side note, if you want a kick ass trainer that will give you amazing results check out Guy’s website and send him a message. I promise you this will be a first step in changing your life as it did mine.
It is super important to take baby steps as well and live life one day at a time while focusing on your goals. Ask yourself what you’re passionate about and go after it. Whether it’s exercise, drawing, painting, taking pictures, etc… It will help you grow and be happy and work on your inner self.
Healthy body + Healthy mind = Happy life