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Shadows in the Sun: Healing from Depression and Finding the Light Within

Shadows in the Sun: Healing from Depression and Finding the Light Within

by Gayathri Ramprasad


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A first-of-its-kind, cross-cultural lens to mental illness through the inspiring story of Gayathri’s thirty-year battle with depression. This literary memoir takes readers from her childhood in India where depression is thought to be a curse to life in America where she eventually finds the light within by drawing on both her rich Hindu heritage and Western medicine to find healing.

As a young girl in Bangalore, Gayathri was surrounded by the fragrance of jasmine and flickering oil lamps, her family protected by Hindu gods and goddesses. But as she grew older, demons came forth from the dark corners of her idyllic kingdom—with the scariest creatures lurking within her.The daughter of a respected Brahmin family, Gayathri began to feel different. "I can hardly eat, sleep, or think straight. The only thing I can do is cry unending tears." Her parents insisted it was all in her head. Because traditional Indian culture had no concept of depression as an illness, no doctor could diagnose and no medicine could heal her mysterious malady.This memoir traces Gayathri's courageous battle with the depression that consumed her from adolescence through marriage and a move to the United States. It was only after the birth of her first child, when her husband discovered her in the backyard "clawing the earth furiously with my bare hands, intent on digging a grave so that I could bury myself alive," that she finally found help. After a stay in a psych ward she eventually found "the light within," an emotional and spiritual awakening from the darkness of her tortured mind.Gayathri's inspiring story provides a first-of-its-kind cross-cultural view of mental illness—how it is regarded in India and in America, and how she drew on both her rich Hindu heritage and Western medicine to find healing.

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Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781616494759
Publisher: Hazelden Publishing
Publication date: 02/11/2014
Pages: 240
Sales rank: 959,523
Product dimensions: 8.90(w) x 5.70(h) x 1.00(d)

About the Author

Gayathri Ramprasad is the founder and President of ASHA International, a non-profit organization promoting personal, organizational and community wellness. She has received undergraduate degrees from Bangalore University, India, and George Fox University in Newberg, Oregon, from where she also received an MBA.A Certified Peer Specialist (CPS), she is also a member of the Global Speakers Federation, the National Alliance on Mental Illness (past Board member, NAMI Oregon), and the Depression and Bipolar Support Alliance.Gayathri is the winner of the prestigious Eli Lilly Welcome Back Award for Lifetime Achievement and the Voice Award for Consumer Leadership sponsored by Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA).Gayathri lives in Portland, Oregon.

Table of Contents

Acknowledgments xiii

Prologue xv

Part 1 Bright Beginnings

1 Diwali at Rama Iyengar Road 3

2 Mantras and Miniskirts 15

Part 2 Veil of Darkness

3 Tomb of Terror 31

4 American Knight 55

5 Passport to Paradise 75

Part 3 Shadows in the Sun

6 A Welcome Respite 95

7 Blessed Motherhood 111

8 Postpartum Blues 123

Part 4 Descent into Darkness

9 Breakdown 139

10 Prisoners in Paradise 165

Part 5 Awakening

11 Finding the Light Within 197

12 On the Road to Recovery 221

13 From Adversity to Advocacy 237

Epilogue 253

Glossary of Indian Words 257

Resources 263

Disorders on the Depression Continuum 265

About the Author 269

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