World Mental Health day recently passed, and I can’t seem to stop reflecting on it. Nobody is perfect, everybody goes through something. And yet sometimes, it seems as if the world is crumbling around our shoulders and nothing we do helps. The stigma surrounding mental health is so exhausting; when people want to reach out for help, they don’t out of fear … fear of being “crazy.” When people don’t reach out for help and their depression, anxiety, etc manifests itself in unforeseen ways, guess what we are? Crazy.
Like I said, nobody is perfect – and yet, I wish that the topic of mental health was met with welcoming arms and we didn’t “bash” people for how they feel. No, not everybody is meant to understand your story, but they can certainly respect it. I’ve seen so many instances lately where people come forward with these beautiful stories of embracing who they are, not letting their problems get the best of them and there are so many messages of hate and slander. I don’t really understand when there became such a prominent lack of emotion from people … how has the world become so distant in such perilous times?
It makes me wonder if a lot of people choose to live in silence about issues that are plaguing them, because the world can be so cruel. It makes me wonder if, as a society, we have become so numb to our feelings that we don’t even understand or begin to comprehend our feelings and realize that we are NOT okay. People can walk around with smiles on their faces and seem like the happiest of those around them, and yet behind closed doors, they cry themselves to sleep at night … and don’t know why.
Recently, a friend of mine came forward about her own struggles and how she is kind of at a point in her life where she doesn’t know where to turn, and it made me reflect on my life, as well. It’s kind of like when you come to a fork in the road … which way do you travel? Do you make a decision and never look back? Or, do you make a decision and constantly beat yourself up about it? Do you wonder if was the right road … the right place … the right time. That anxiety we feel, that pressure … that constant set of questions that can never seem to be answered because there’s one after another … and another … is so painful. SO many people are hurting in silence, and we are so oblivious to that.
Check in with yourself. Learn that it’s ok to say that I AM NOT OKAY, and speak out. Check on your strong friends, the ones who may constantly smile and always seem to, “hold it down,” we never know what anybody’s story truly may be.