Freefall to Fly

If it were possible to feel an emotion when I went through depression several years ago, that emotion would have been surprised. I never pegged myself as someone prone to depression, and besides, I always thought depression meant crying, walking around feeling sad all the time, and triggered by something traumatic or heartbreaking.

But since my typical depressive state was feeling…. nothing, I wasn’t surprised, because “surprise” is a feeling, isn’t it? And so I went through about two years, off and on, feeling nothing more than something, waiting for something or someone to pull me out of my cloud and make to my usual self.

It’s now been about three years since I was in the thick throes of depression, though I remember the odd, in between-like state as though it were yesterday, and I’m fully aware that those who’ve been depressed before have a higher chance of becoming depressed again—meaning, it’s fully part of my life in some way. And because those dealing with depression are dear to my heart, I love reading words from someone who “gets” what it feels like. If she packages it in a beautiful book that’s perfect for giving to those who need a dose of encouragement? Even better.

Rebekah Lyons’ first book, Freefall to Fly, isn’t only about depression, but it’s a very real part of her story. And because this book is about her story, her words are a gift of comfort to those who’ve had that freefall feeling, not knowing what’s up.


Rebekah tells her tale of moving from the suburban south to the heart of New York City, and what it feels like to be yanked out of everything normal and comfortable and into constant newness and culture shock.

It forced her to answer big questions about her life, like Why was I put on earth?, How do I turn suffering into something beautiful and useful?, and Is this really the way God intended life to be? And in finding answers to her questions, she found healing.

The book is about finding meaning by taking risks, whatever those risks may look like for you.

The end of the book provides space and open-ended questions for the reader to think through her own life as well, making Rebekah’s personal story an application for anybody. Why are you on earth?



Rebekah is giving TEN Simple Mom readers a copy of Freefall to Fly: A Breathtaking Journey Toward a Life of Meaning. To enter, simply leave any comment on this post! (If you’re reading this via email, hop over to the site to leave a comment there.)

Something Fun

art-print-popIf you buy Rebekah’s book, you can enter your information here (scroll down), and you’ll receive three additional gifts: an original chalk art print by artist Dana Tanamachi, a TOMS $5 gift card, and a Freefall to Fly digital soundtrack. Pretty cool!

This giveaway is now closed. Check back on Saturday, May 18 – we’ll announce the winners then.

top photo source
Tsh Oxenreider

Tsh is the founder of this blog and just finished traveling around the world with her husband and 3 kids. Her latest book is Notes From a Blue Bike, and believes a passport is one of the world's greatest textbooks.

Encouragement for living simpler, right in your inbox.

We share our stories as we simplify our lives - no guilt-trips, just love.

(no spam, promise. we hate it, too.)


  1. Heather says:

    I would love to win a copy of this book! Thank you for the oppurtunity!

  2. This is intriguing. I am a mother of 5 and consider myself “fine”. But the definition of depression as feeling nothing has me wondering. Thanks for the chance to win a copy.

  3. Liliana says:

    Thank you for the chance to win.

  4. I’ve been struggling with depression for over a year now – I too feel that surprise once I realized – ME? Depressed? I’ve always been the optimist, the happy, joyful woman. Not the last year…I’d love to read Rebekah’s story.

  5. Oh I’d love to win and read this book. As someone who has struggled with depression for years I love to read others journeys and how god impacts their lives.

  6. I’ve been looking for something like this to read. For the past couple of years my sister and I have both been surprised by depression. It’s also been eye opening just with the conversations we have had about out mother and not realizing as a child that this is what she was going through. I would really like to read Rebekah’s story.

  7. Victoria Branch says:

    What an interesting book – I want to read this!

  8. This sounds like a wonderful book! Would love to win a copy!

    • Christy Cooper says:

      As someone who has struggled with my faith through anxiety and depression (and am still working through it) I would love to win a copy of this book!

  9. Christine says:

    I’ve struggled with depression myself and would love to sit at her feet and hear her wisdom.

  10. Would love to read this! Sounds like a great book!

  11. Looks like a wonderful and inspiring read – thanks for the chance – and for letting me know the book is out there!

  12. Elizabeth says:

    I went through several months of depression after I had my second daughter. It was one of the most difficult times in my life and the thought of going through that again if we have another child is very scary. I’m adding this book to my wish list.

  13. I’m really looking forward to reading this book. I went into a bout of depression earlier this year and sometimes it is really hard to know how to take care of yourself there.

  14. J McAuley says:

    Thank you for the chance to win.

  15. Julie H says:

    This sounds like a book I need to read, now! Hope to win one of the copies. Fingers crossed!

  16. (I tried to leave a comment but the website blinked on me – not sure if the comment will ever surface, I apologize for two comments if it does!!!!)

    Thank you for the chance and for letting us know the book is out there – it looks like a wonderful, inspiring read!

  17. Nancy P says:

    I never considered myself to be depressed but I certainly feel flat and numb. I would to read this story and will let our local library know to put it on their radar. This could be one of those life-changing books for many women. Thank you!

  18. This sounds like a very informative book that I think a lot of my clients would enjoy, as well as I. Thank you. (Natural Living Massage & Wellness)

  19. I’d love to win a copy of this book…if not, I’m definitely buying it 🙂 This is exactly what I’ve been feeling over the past 2 years of my life and would love to read someone else’s story to know I’m not alone. Thanks for the chance to win!

  20. Kathe H says:

    Funny thing, I am currently in the throws of the horrible grip of depression. I know i have suffered with it all my life, but was good at ignoring it because I watched my mother suffer from it as a kid; she slept alot. And I said to myself that will not happen to me and why can’t she get over it. Now I know why she couldn’t just get over it. The “d” really manifested itself with me after the birth my daughter, she is 2. However, I covered it up for months, she was almost 1 when I surrendered ( not on my own accord), I had a break down. I didn’t have the bad thoughts or wanted to bring to myself or anyone, I was just empty and had the nothing feeling. I ashamed to say I can be a very apathetic person. I was treated for post partum. Not with drugs, was not going in that direction. I was good feeling great, then almost to the date of the year anniversary of my pp diagnosis, I was getting the nothing feeling and I worked hard at ignoring it. I didn’t understand what was going on, I chalked it up to seasonal adjustment. Long story short, I made an appt to see my primary doctor because I was tried of being tired (wasn’t sleeping, it had been months). I was convinced I had a sleep disorder. So the day of appoinment came. And there it was that word again she used…DEPRESSION! She said I’m suffering from depression. And there you have it I suffer from depression. It sucks, I don’t want to, but its my reality. So I am treating it naturally, and without antidpressants. I’m feeling good and sleeping soooooooooo much better. I look forward to reading your book…I know I am not alone!

  21. christina says:

    Sounds like a book many of us need to read. Thanks for the giveaway!

  22. This sounds like the perfect book for me to read and share. Know that ” no feeling” feeling all too well.

  23. Thanks for the giveaway! I would love to win this book.

  24. This book looks interesting. I think everyone knows the feeling of trying to find meaning and purpose in chaos. Thanks for the give-away.

  25. Valerie says:

    Sounds like a book that would be perfect to read given where I am in my life right now. Thanks for the chance.

  26. I have dealt with depression all my life, and grew up with a mother who is bi-polar. I often find myself stuck and feeling hopeless. I would love to read this book and get some insight into how others deal with the same feeling. I hope I can win this book!

  27. As a woman who struggles with depression, I would love to read this book!

  28. I would love to read this.

  29. Michele says:

    This feels like me right now. I vacillate between wanting to take a long walk off a short pier and feeling excitement for what could be. I’m stuck & unfulfilled. Don’t even know where to turn to next. Maybe the book would help me. Or maybe it would be another thing I “can’t” do. Thanks for the opportunity.

  30. I would love to win this book. I’m on the tail-end of a major depressive episode that lasted for most of a year. Thank the Lord He has brough me out through wonderful doctors and counselors! It’s so great to hear from others who have experienced the same thing, as depression is one of the loneliest places to be.

  31. Sounds like an amazing book, and one that would be very helpful at this point in my life. Thanks for making your readers aware of great resources such as these!

  32. Sounds like a great book, I’m particularly intrigued by the questions at the end. I always enjoy introspection.

  33. Colleen M. says:

    Sound like a fantastic book. Thanks for offering it!

  34. Peggy Nagy says:

    Wow would a pertinent book for so many women. I look forward to reading it.

  35. I would love to win. I’m going through some situational depression and it’s just continually on-going. I think reading something like this might help. Besides, the cover is beautiful! 🙂

  36. It sounds wonderful!

  37. Connie Tacazon says:

    This book sounds very interesting.

  38. Going through the ups and downs and surprise at the realization that another depressive episode has decened on me can be tough. It’s definitely a journey I’ll be walking for the unforseeable future but I believe God is using it as a tool to make me into the woman he created me to be.

    Thanks for sharing your story Tsh. I’d love to read Rebekahs as well.

  39. Michelle says:

    After having lived through about five years of the after-effects of a horribly traumatizing experience, I have found myself in a state of fight or flight most of the time. I would really enjoy reading this book as I feel connected to this story.

  40. Melanie says:

    Depression/melancholy/”is this all there is” has been a part of my life since I was a teenager. Not enough to debilitate me but just enough to steal away living life to it’s fullest. Always thought I could beat it on my own but never could figure out how until now. I’m now 58 and have recently lost my husband. Through the horrendous pain and associated depression I’ve accepted that God has a plan and every day I bring myself to Him for comfort.

    I look forward to reading your book. Thank you for putting yourself out there for others to learn from.

  41. Kirsten Fox says:

    I would love to win this book! I also went through a dark/numb time a few years ago. Like I was in a raging river, but couldn’t tell if I was drowning or not.

  42. would love to win a copy!

  43. Lynne McClure says:

    Thanks for this opportunity. I agree, once you recover from depression, the possibility of its return is something that can keep you on your guard.

    Love your blog.

    Thanks again!

  44. Shari Kawashima says:

    Wow, her life description hit home for me – I lived my whole life in Lexington, ky. until 3.5 years ago when my husband and I moved to Tokyo, Japan. I am a counselor by education and have been experiencing depression for the past few months. Her description of not knowing the feeling is so true – my husband asks what I need and I cannot tell him because I do not know. And man, moving from the south to a big city – there is nothing like it. Add to that a language barrier and no car and two small children – well, let’s just say, if I am not chosen to win the book I want to buy it because I know it will impact me and meet me in my life stage right now. Thank you for the opportunity!

  45. I keep hearing about this book and would love to read it!

  46. Christine C says:

    What a great book. Sounds like something I could use right now. Life sure is beautiful, but sure isn’t easy.

  47. Pam Craig says:

    Having recently been diagnosed with depression – I am just trying to find out as much as possible – ways to heal, how to move on and still be the mom God called me to be. Thank you for the book – I can’t wait to read it!!

  48. I would like to win a copy!

  49. Sounds lovely!

  50. Charlotte says:

    I went from super-crazed full time working mother to dizzyingly enthusiastic and productive SAHM, to suddenly isolated and depressed these past few months…
    I am looking for a chance to reinvent myself, and reading this book seems to be in that path!

  51. Her story is close to heart. Even the move to NYC impacts me already. For it was in NYC that I both hit my bottom and began my healing. It has been 4 years for me. I would love to read her story.

  52. Id love to win this book – depression is very prevalent in my family. I’m in the midst of trying to take some risks myself, and this book might help make that final push for me.

  53. I would love to win this book! My mom has dealt with depression and I would love to read this.

  54. This books sounds life altering, I would love to read it!

  55. I would love to read this book. Thanks for the chance 🙂

  56. Depression is rotten for everybody while it’s going on.

  57. Steph J says:

    After my first period of depression, when I was feeling better again, I promised myself that if I ever got to feeling depressed again I would remind myself that it’s not real–the desperation or the “nothing”–they are not who I am. Then when I found myself slipping back again, I couldn’t believe any of that, again. That’s really what the depression is all about for me–being completely unable to see the light. I would love to see it transformed into meaning and purpose. Thanks for the chance to win this book!

  58. Suzie Evans says:

    I would love to read this. Love the cover art too.

  59. I would love to read more of her story – anyone who is open and honest about some of the things that are sometimes kept in secret is someone I’d like to read more of …

  60. Would love to hear her story!

  61. How strong she is to write this book! Can’t wait to read it!

  62. I’d love a copy! Thanks for the chance and giveaway. Love your blog friend.

  63. Cynthia says:

    Sounds like a great book!

  64. This sounds like a great read! I’ve struggled with depression in the past , too–and even though it feels far away, I know that it could come back.

    Thanks for the chance to win!

  65. I’d be super interested in reading this book!

  66. Melanie says:

    This sounds like a book I’d like to read, and I enjoyed the video.

  67. This book sounds great! Depression is one of the most empty things–it’s not full of crying for me at all, just like you Tsh. It’s just empty, and everything is hard. It’s a completely uncreative state. I don’t know why people think depressed people are super creative and moody, like it’s a trendy thing, because depression hinders my work and creative ability more than fatigue and physical illness can.

  68. Jennifer Ott says:

    As someone who has struggled with depression, I fear the cliff that I remember. I would love the chance to read this book!

  69. Megan Mattinson says:

    Oh, this would be such a blessing.

  70. marilyn says:

    sounds like a fabulous book and interesting read.

  71. I am intrigued about this book and would love to win a copy!

  72. Heather says:

    Just added this book to my “to read” list, but I’d love to win it!! I asked a lot of these questions when my youngest was around 18 months. I was overwhelmed so I reached out to a professional psychiatrist. Have had an amazing year with her, had another baby, and am now anticipating another round of self-questioning as my new baby gets older.

  73. Yesterday I had a heart wrenching talk with my little sister who is 27 and totally feeling the effects of what this book talks about. She is lonely and feels as thought she has accomplished nothing (even though is a physical therapist, and beautiful women, a sister, a friend, daughter, and aunt). She is depressed, a feeling she doesn’t know how to deal with because she has NEVER been a sad person in her whole life. I would love to give her this book. Maybe it would bring some hope into her life, renew her strength to fly.

  74. I think everyone could benefit from reading this book, whether you’ve had depression or not, you certainly are exposed to someone battling this each and every day.

  75. This book is exactly what I need to read right now. I was diagnosed with depression in February of this year, and I am pregnant with our third child. I am doing much better, having sought out counselling and cognitive-behaviour therapy. It is a journey for sure.

  76. Terry C says:

    Wow, this kinda sounds like something I’ve been going through. Would love to read this and gain some insight. Thanks 🙂

  77. I would love to win this – something I’ve definitely struggled with depression and those feelings of nothingness – this book sounds amazing.

  78. cynthia says:

    Sounds like a great book – I did the opposite move…from NYC to the suburban south

  79. I could really us this book right about now!

  80. I am looking at being uprooted from a lovely suburban life with my five kids to LA for my husband to try a new job. I want to be supportive but honestly, I am very scared of the unknown and of having to build a new life again. We have started over several times but the kids were always small, now they are 8,10,12,14 and 16. I would love to read this book and be encouraged in my walk.

  81. Would love to read this book. Is it available to buy as well?

  82. Heather Myhr says:

    This sounds like a good book.

  83. Sounds like an interesting read, maybe it’s my lucky day?

  84. Cortney says:

    I dealt with PPD after my second was born. Eight years later, we’ll finally welcome our third child into the family. And I’m scared of dealing with PPD again. This book seems like it could help me to FEEL and ENGAGE.

  85. Teresa Coy says:

    If I don’t win this giveaway, I will be purchasing this book. Thank you for the chance!

  86. Kristin Thomas says:

    I would really love to have this book! While I have never experienced symptoms of depression, my husband has and what the author felt seems to be how my husband felt. I would love to understand more and would LOVE for him to read the book too! Thanks for this chance!!

  87. Sounds like an inspiring read!

  88. I would love to have a copy of this. It sounds like just what I need to read. Thanks for the chance!

  89. Meaghan says:

    Please enter me–thank you for the drawing!

  90. Sharon Yost says:

    I would like to read this book! Those thoughts and feelings can happen at any stage of life.

  91. Amazing how the universe so often hands you what you need. Not only have I, along with my mother and sister, struggled with depression, but my teenage daughter is journeying through her own devastating experience. My career is at a crossroads and my life has somewhat stalled. I think I need a free fall – if only I could figure out what it would look like!

  92. I love reading.

  93. I would love to win a copy of this book. Depression doesn’t have to control our lives. Thank you for the chance to win a copy.

  94. Tamrah T says:

    It sounds like a wonderful book! Depression isn’t a place anyone chooses, but I love that she was able to share her journey through it to a brighter place. Yes please, enter me into the book giveaway.

  95. Tricia Paoluccio says:

    I would love to read this book. I had a period of depression over a heartbreak that I thought would never end. Now it has passed. And I feel compelled to volunteer at a suicide hotline or something because I just have such compassion for people who are going through that. I hope to read your book, even if I dont win a copy. Thanks for sharing your story.

  96. Sounds like a great book – I’d love a copy.

  97. I’d love to win a copy of this! Sound incredible!

  98. Would like to read this book!

  99. Tsh, It is welcoming to hear others stories of depression. For me, it helps to remind me that other people have gone through it or manage to live with it and still have a great life. I think you hit the nail on the head when you said “nothing”. For me, it was long periods of nothing interspersed with soul sucking sadness then nothing again. Thankfully, with a lot of help, I am much better. I would love to read Rebekah’s book. Her story, from your description, is a mirror image of mine. I moved from a large metro area in the Rockies to the South. A culture shock but in many different ways. I also had an “empty nest” for the first time in 23 years. I would feel truly blessed to read her account and how she dealt with it. You have to continue to work on yourself or you will stagnate; and it sounds like this book will help do that. I hope to win!

  100. I’ve wondered if I’ve been struggling with this too, most days I just feel numb and don’t get beyond a small list of to do’s! But I’m tired too, that doesn’t help. 🙂 I’d love to read this moms story.