There is no “back to normal”

In my mere four-ish years dealing with major mental illness, I comforted myself by asserting that eventually I would be "back to normal." Eventually, I would be able to attend a social function without having to take two days to recuperate. Eventually, I would be able to leave my bedroom. Eventually, I would be able… Continue reading There is no “back to normal”

From your friend with anxiety

I think a lot of us misunderstand anxiety because we throw it around so casually. We say, "Oh, that gives me anxiety" about anything that makes us mildly uncomfortable. While I don’t want to discount anyone’s “anxieties,” as someone who has been diagnosed with Generalized Anxiety Disorder by a professional, I also want to highlight… Continue reading From your friend with anxiety

Motivate, don’t guilt-trip

“If you don’t talk to that person, then they will not receive the gospel and you will be responsible.” “You’d better arise and retire on time or you will not see miracles today.” “If you do not take advantage of every second of your mission, then you will regret it forever.” “The reason why the… Continue reading Motivate, don’t guilt-trip

An open letter to the depressed missionary

I recently received an email from a sister missionary who struggles with depression. Her experience so far on her mission has been quite similar to the experience I had just three years ago on mine. Reading what she wrote, I ached for her. I had flashbacks of those familiar feelings: the crippling inadequacy, the consistent… Continue reading An open letter to the depressed missionary

Missions aren’t saving ordinances

I’ll be honest. I definitely idealized missions. (Our culture kinda does that, too. We don’t tend to talk about the long days of cancellations, the cold-shoulder companions, the frustration you feel when you don’t have support from the ward, the un-glamorous uphill bike rides during rainstorms on flat bike tires, et cetera. And those things… Continue reading Missions aren’t saving ordinances

When you’re rejected, part 2

"Don't take it personally." I had a really hard time dealing with rejection as a missionary. The advice to "not take it personally" came from several people, myself included. However, for some reason that advice didn't seem like enough for me. I didn't feel like rejection was difficult just because people were mean sometimes. No,… Continue reading When you’re rejected, part 2