Beyond Blue

Beyond Blue

The Color Purple

There is a reason violet follows blue in a rainbow. At the heart of depression’s “blues” is a time of waiting–symbolized by the color purple during Advent, the liturgical season preceding Christmas. It’s appropriate, then, that Beliefnet is launching a blog about depression and anxiety at a time when Christians around the world are preparing to celebrate the birth of the Christ Child.

In my dark night of depression, all I could do was wait. Wait to feel better. To feel anything. In my silent night, I simply stayed put–did not walk to the storage closet in our garage to end my life with 20 bottles of old presciptions I had stashed away. I waited, like Mary, to get to the other side of birth–the more pleasant side, where you had something to show for all your cursing.


“The dark night helps us become who we are created to be: lovers of God and one another,” wrote Gerald G. May in his book, “The Dark Night of the Soul.”

How I wish that weren’t so.

Yet no one stays blue forever. Blue always turns to purple–to the place where you can’t stand it any longer and start memorizing novenas to all the saints (like St. Jude, patron saint of lost causes). And lighting candles in dark places (like bedroom closets), stating your intentions (to be happy again, or at least not miserable anymore), and then preparing for something (besides your credit card bill) to change. And it does, eventually. Because all holy nights end in a miracle of love.

  • http://HASH(0xcf26e3c) marylou

    wow I really enjoyed this thank you. I feel better reading this today. Praise God. I think I finding some Hope today.

  • http://HASH(0xcf288d8) Betty Fowler

    This is the best article I have ever read on my disease and the way I feel. I have suffered with this since my late 20s and now I am 77. It is refreshing to know someone knows what my life is like. I have never had any support because no one in my family knows anything about manic depression/bipolar. Thank you.

  • http://HASH(0xcf29574) Marie

    Thanks for all your honest comments.Your well-put words have encouraged me in my depressive state.All I have hoped for this christmas is a spark of joy, but the depressive thoughts flood in like a tsunami. As it seems we all try to do the expediant things everyone else do.Unfortunately my emotions can’t line up with my actions.MAYBE tomorrow it will shift. God Bless!

  • Z. Y. L.

    Thank you for your honest and painfully sensitive words…I suffer from mild SAD (seasonal affective disorder)…Thank God, it is only mild…I dreaded the winter and cold dark days and nights for a long time not really knowing why…it was my Guardian Angel…my sister… that discoved SAD and helped me to become stable and see the world for the beautiful gift that God has given us…tears come to my eyes when I read your words of the loneliness…waiting…knowing with all my heart that this too shall come to pass. God Bless you and all those you love and love you!!! You are a treasure in this world.

  • Jill

    This post has just given me some comfort. Thank you. I’m in so much pain right now. I will be waiting for the purple. I too, have many old bottles of prescriptions. And I’m so tempted right now. But I will wait for the purple. I have read your book and your posts. Thank you for sharing. You have saved my life!! Getting better has just started for me. I’m going to start reading about the saints right now and light those candles. Thank you. Thank you.

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