As a person who suffers with depression and other mental health issues I can tell you that, at least in my own experience, pushing one’s self is not always possible.
That’s the number one thing I hear, “You just have to keep pushing yourself!”, “Keep trying!”, or “It’s all in your head!”
You get the gist.
And while that sometimes might be the case, I wanted to talk about those times when it’s been a struggle merely to get out of bed, to take a shower, to feed myself, and to get dressed.
In darker moments, it can be such a struggle.
But what if I need to go out? To interact with other people? The mere thought of doing, what are otherwise perceived as “normal behaviors, ” is enough to send you… Back to bed.
I’m here to lament just what a life saver the abaya turned out to be for these moments. The abaya is a version of clothing sometimes worn by Muslim women.
I’m not overly religious, per se, but the religious and cultural garb came to my rescue when I needed to quickly leave my house for quick errands while still looking presentable through my depressive state. I could literally slip it on over my pajamas.
Without it, who knows how much more time I may have spent languishing.
Mental health issues remain a largely unacknowledged issue in the Muslim community.
My goal with this blog is to talk about some of these taboo subjects by relating to my own experience and knowledge with the intent of clearing the dust out of some of these topics and, hopefully, to be able to help someone along the way.
Many Muslims and Christians, as well, tend to blame depression on a “lack of faith” in God or by not performing enough supplications. Likewise, I know there are those who would take offense to me describing the abaya as a garment that helped me in my darker moments rather than as a blinding symbol of faith and purity.
Here’s the thing to remember though;
There are hundreds of ways to kneel and kiss the ground. – Rumi