Annaliese went to the extreme---completely removing herself and that side of her life from Jessica to protect her.
This has been the last nineteen years of my life, struggling with depression and anxiety at varying levels, without really talking about it, or if I did, painting it in as much of a positive light as I could, so I wouldn’t scare those around me. Some days, there are many things that contribute, though some days I should be fine, it should have been a good day, but it’s not. Growing up my life felt full of loneliness and rejection, with trouble at home, bullying at school, and an extremely low self esteem. Now my life is busy, and I rarely get a moment to myself, with 2 children, a husband, a dog, a job... everything I wanted, although it can often be very stressful and my anxiety can get out of control.
A lot of the time I try to convince myself that I have come out the other side, that I’m ‘better’. If I was completely honest though, I am just like Annaliese, trying to get better, but hiding that side of myself as much as I can.
I understand Annaliese. I understand the fear of what those around me will think if I really showed them the daily struggle. Jessica’s initial reaction to hearing about the reason for her mothers distance was not one of acceptance, and this is what I fear the most.
This is why Rita and Shane’s response to Jessica’s attitude and Annaliese’s story touched me so deeply. They had empathy, compassion, and understanding, but furthermore, they fought for her when she couldn’t fight herself. In almost every Signed, Sealed, Delivered movie, the POstables are fighting on behalf of those who are losing hope, whether it is reconnecting with an estranged or lost family member, or friend, and healing relationships.
Watching these movies has given me courage to begin reaching out again, to those who are a part of my ‘non-online’ life, to attempt to trust those around me to respond with love and understanding.
To those who are on the same journey, and find these words familiar - trust the timing. Solid friendships, like those of the POstables in SSD, take a while to find. Until then, struggle along with me in trying to trust and lean on the comfort of Jesus.
To those who haven’t experienced this, please don’t run from those who do. Yes, it is tiring and stressful to support people who struggle, but share the burden. Make a community, a family, like the POstables, so we can get through the pain together.
Be open, kind, and genuine in your love for others. You never know what hurt is being hidden.
The Living Letters series continues as long as there are stories (or even praise reports) to share, and I'm always looking for submissions. If you would like to contribute something about how Signed, Sealed, Delivered has impacted your life (or even your wardrobe) that you'd be willing to share here on A&D, feel free to email me. Keep the good going and submit yours today.