Let’s Talk About Depression, In a Non-Depressed Way!

I’m not talking about what people call depression when they are feeling down, sad & frustrated for a few days. That isn’t depression. Please do make sure to educate yourself about the most common & wide-spread mental illness called “Clinical Depression”. Because let’s save some time here instead of talking about the differences and the actuality of the illness.

I wanna talk about it because I’ve been battling with depression since late teenage, Of course not non-stop, but rather during different years and periods in my life. I’ve been medicated against depression multiple times. And the result? Relapsing over and over again. Sometimes depression came alone, & some other times it came hand in hand along with anxiety. And those two are seriously gruesome.

It’s seriously disturbing how mental health medicine & services related to mental health are super scarce in my country. But, recently things are beginning to change. In all my years with depression, no doctor suggested any type of therapy, other than pills. Seriously, why? Why mental health holds no value in this place whatsoever?

So, during the Covid-related lock-down, during the height of it, I was watching a Netflix series called “Sex Education”, it really did cheer me up during those days. But what inspired me is a main character who happens to be a sex therapist. This idea made me stop & pause & give myself a minute to wounder. The word “Therapist” or “Therapy” made me look online for any psychology & therapy courses. & I learned that “CBT” or ” Cognitive Behavioral Therapy” is wide-spread (around the world, not in my country), it’s also been used for decades now & it’s used for depression & anxiety.

So I enrolled in a “CBT” online course, & another & another, to understand the concept & learn how to use it. Yes, it isn’t easy to apply it, but it’s easier to apply it on people rather than applying it on yourself when you need it. Oh man, it’s so hard to be a therapist & a patient at the same time.

Another question that left real scars in my cognition was, why no one taught us basic simple principles of “CBT”? What are schools for? Why I never heard a single teacher emphasizing on the importance of mental health?

My studies continued, as I became very interested in the matter. I enrolled in a course that talks about Buddhism & mental health. One very popular concept is meditation & focusing on breathing when needed or just to reset the mind, & the wholesome benefits people get from that. & the importance of the concept of self awareness. Why no one ever emphasized on the importance of meditation? Why do we have to learn; 1st, the hard way, & 2nd, late in life, when changing your mindset or habits take serious time & efforts.

I’m sure it would have been worth it if such matters were addressed in schools, & taught & used to help children in need. You know, instead of telling us people who commit suicide go to hell, they should have been less judgmental & more proactive to know that some mental illnesses cause people to kill themselves with no remorse or second thoughts.

Instead of wasting our time learning stupid subjects, they could have taught us to be self-aware. But hey, who are we bullshitting? I don’t think any of my teachers back then knew anything about either subjects. It’s easier to be ignorant & judgmental.

I don’t want you to think that I’m blaming it all on school or some other party. I do understand now that it’s an individual responsibility to watch out for one’s well-being.

But it also bugs me when a doctor, or a bunch of them, tell depressed people things they believe are facts like “If someone relapses more than twice, they are doomed to deal with depression for the rest of their lives, & that this is now called a chronic depression.” WOW doc! Thank you for trying to depress me even more! But no, I’m not falling for that, because doctors are doctors, they know only enough, they don’t know everything. I’ve been told things by physicians that almost convinced me to go under the knife, to later discover that I’ve always dodged a bullet. MFs want money. (MF is an abbreviation for a bad word).

Depressed or not, anxious or not, a few care, many don’t. Which means, please, do try your best to live day by day, one step at a time. & if you need to talk about your mental health & well-being do make sure to reach out to me.

Katia 🙂

Sharing a Horrible Zumba® Experience! Just saying!

Zumba Fitness
Zumba Fitness

So everyone expects  Zumba to be a happy thing, right?

I’m originally a Les Mills instructor, I decided to enroll myself in Zumba Fitness different instructors’ training courses due to the markets’ demand, and second my appreciation to dancing in general.

On the 27th of this month, which is two days ago, I have been to a Zumba Step instructors’ training, fully willing and fully aware of what I was doing. I have registered during February this year, before I got my joints infection attacking my feet, and so when the time came to do Zumba Step I thought I can do it, since two days before I was on a Les Mills RPM module training, which is more serious, strict and physically demanding, besides the assessments we had to go through during these two days in order to initially pass or fail, and what motivated me to go on for the Zumba Step, is that the RPM master trainer did make sure to let me know what my duties and responsibilities were during the RPM module so I deliver what they expected me to, on the other hand the master trainer did actually let me rest and take small breaks when I thought my feet were not gonna hold me standing or pedaling longer, and I passed it, so i thought Zumba Step is easier and less serious and the ZES, Zumba Educational Specialist, are usually more relaxed, so no biggy, no biggy at all!

Among the instructors we had another Les Mills instructor who had a recent knee surgery, her knee hurts and my feet hurt and we both had a reason why we should have rested every now and then. But this is what we have been told by the ZES: IF YOU THINK YOU ARE NOT FIT ENOUGH FOR THE PROGRAM TAKE YOUR MONEY AND LEAVE, IF YOU ARE NOT GOING TO DO EVERYTHING WE ARE GOING TO DO HERE THEN TAKE YOUR MONEY AND LEAVE.

It was kinda shocking to hear such words coming from a person who claims to have knee problems, and weird enough to hear such things from a person who claims to have been in the fitness industry for over a decade. Fitness instructors usually are aware of injuries and different health problems, and the majority of them have been through some injuries, whether they were small or big, they do know what it means to be injured and still want to continue education and career. So calling Les Mills instructors UNFIT, like me and my colleague in that case, is totally unacceptable. We weren’t there to judge or be judged.

Besides that the one day session was a one man’s show! Everything had to roam around that ZES, who’s name I’m not going to mention:

  • WHEN I WAS IN MY TWENTIES I WAS SLIM, I WAS FIT, I HAD 6 PACKS!
  • I WAS A LES MILLS INSTRUCTOR TEACHING THIS AND THAT!
  • WHEN I TALK YOU LISTEN, AND NO ONE ELSE IS ALLOWED TO TALK!
  • I HAVE FOUND MY RELAXATION TECHNIQUES: BODY BALANCE, JUNK AND WINE.
  • I DON’T WANT TO BE FIT ANYMORE, I WANNA EAT ALL THE BAD THINGS IN LIFE.

And lots of other bluffing like: THE BAR TENDER IN THE HOTEL IN AMMAN WAS SURPRISED WHEN I ORDERED BEER AS A WOMAN!

Here is what I want to say:

  • We paid money and came to learn not to get to know you!
  • Don’t judge us for being injured and sick, because one day you might also be in our shoes.
  • Zumba Step specialty is kinda new and we did want to be among the first instructors in Jordan, my country where I live now, to have its license and teach it, so appreciate our attendance, we have disregarded our situations, so respecting it would be much better than whatever you have done.
  • Don’t ask me to leave or reschedule because such specialties are not coming every other week to my country.
  • Honestly I don’t need a ZES to teach me anything in Zumba, I just need the manual and the DVDs for the program, you should be glad I came.
  • Fitness instructors no matter what TRY AND LOOK AND SEEM AND BEHAVE HEALTHY, so we never talk about junk, smoking, alcohol, etc in front of our students/members.
  • Bragging about the past won’t bring the it back, so get real please.
  • During Les Mills module training courses so far I never heard the word Zumba, so why mention Les Mills during a Zumba training. There is no way to compare this with that, please! And don’t change the channel.
  • Jordan is an Arab Muslim country, but drinking became so usual and normal, bar tenders don’t freak out seeing ladies asking for alcohol, I suggest you try another way to show off or look like an outcast or feel special. You were in Jordan not Saudi Arabia. And holding such a job of yours, you must be very accustomed to cultural differences and not mention them at all.
  • We are adults too, just like you, so let’s not play kids and teacher here, never ever!

Anyway, thanks for reading, I really never been through such a horrible experience trying to learn something new in fitness. I felt I was serving in the military that day bossed by someone who’s mental.

Katia 🙂