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How God Provided When I Was Left Alone to Battle Depression

One brave mum from Brazil shares her story of overcoming poverty and mental illness.

depression in brazil

My heart still cries every time I look at my children. But today I know that despite all my worries God is taking care of me.

My name is Maria, I’m 24 years old and I have two children. During my first pregnancy I lived with my partner and although I didn’t know much about caring for a baby, I had my mother’s support in all I needed. When my daughter was born, I named her Lara, and despite all the hardship we faced, I was happy to have a family.

But in June 2017, everything changed.

Maria and her family

Suddenly, I was alone

My partner left me and abandoned our home - he left me with a lot of expenses and no money. That day, my world became sadder because I saw my family collapse. One day I had family and the other day I was alone. A few days after he left I found out I was pregnant again.

My second pregnancy was very difficult because I felt desperate and alone, so over time I began to suffer from depression. I didn’t feel good about anything and I locked myself in the house. The only thing I could think was that everything I had was over and that life would get harder and harder with that child inside of me.

Although I had my mother around, I couldn’t depend on her for everything. She also had her own problems. So one day, the church Child Survival project came into my life to help my family. When I was about four months pregnant I discovered that it provided support for pregnant and single mothers just like me and I wanted to get involved.

When I felt hopeless fighting depression, God provided an opportunity

Since I started to be part of Survival, my life has changed. The church has helped me a lot in all the stages of pregnancy. I'm still not completely free of depression, some days the memories of my old life come and I feel really sad. But I know that if it weren't for the Compassion project I’d be so much worse off.

It's great to know that someone cares about you. Everyone is always willing to help. They always come to visit, ask me how I feel, give me advice, teach me about Jesus and encourage me to move on with God’s help.

With them I learnt many things about baby care that I didn’t know when my first child was born. In the project I was also able to learn how to embroider and make art with recycled materials.

Baby in Brazil

Beyond all the support they give me, I’m very grateful for everything they did for my son. I didn’t have money to buy anything. My family held a donation meeting, but I didn’t get much. We live with the help of the government’s support and my mother’s help.

I always felt sad that I couldn’t give a better future for my son. But as always, I was worrying about things and God was already preparing everything for me.

The project gave me a newborn essential kit with all things my son needed: baby clothes, blankets, diapers, bath products and a baby bathtub. In February 2018, I gave birth to a beautiful and healthy boy; his name is Gustavo.

Slowly I will rebuild my life with God’s help

I love to go to church and attend meetings with other mothers. Sometimes Lara asks about her father and kneels in prayer asking God to bring him back. That's why Survival home visits are important as they help me grow spiritually and reinforce my relationship with my children. They make us feel important and loved and Lara understands that God is a father that never leaves us.

I want to see my children growing up in the church and having a better future than mine. My dream is to build my own house, because here when it rains everything gets wet. The blessings I want today are to offer something better to my children.

I’m thankful, I have hope, I have a new family in Christ and I know that I am not alone in this journey.


Compassion's Child Survival initiative gives mums like Maria vital support in caring for their children. Find out how you can bring stability and security to the next family in crisis. 

Discover how child survival changes lives

WORDS : Sara Navarro

PHOTOS : Sara Navarro

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