I battle often with what to share and what not to (most things don't get shared), but the fact that I even have those thoughts because I'm worried what people think, gets on my nerves.
Sharing "the struggle" (with depression, anxiety, bipolar- whatever your mental illness may be) is hard. REALLY hard. But how else will your tribe be able to provide you with the support you need? And how else will the stigma be broken?
I don't want it to seem like I'm all doom and gloom and my life sucks, because it doesn't. And I know that. I am immensely thankful for the support that I have. Loving family and friends. For the fact that I'm able to make a living doing work that I love. That I have a roof over my head, food to eat, a car to drive... just to name a few. Blessings I do not take lightly, so when I share something about my day being hard, it is not discounting those things. I'm just talking about the difficulty of living with *this*. And I'm talking about it because few others are.
Even with that though, there's this "thing", this unspoken thing where I worry that people are tired of hearing about this. Tired of the "awareness" and wish I would stop talking about it. This may be (and I'm sure it partially is) projecting, but the feeling is still there. I do wish I was better. I do wish I didn't have to deal with these thoughts and feelings, mood and energy shifts... But I do, and countless others do too. And we can't do this alone. I don't WANT to do this alone.
So... I'll continue to do my part by TALKING about it. Things won't change unless we #talkaboutuncomfortablethings. I've had so many people reach out since my first post back in March, and I can't tell you how much that means to me. Folks dealing with mental health issues themselves, folks wanting to offer support where they can... none of this would be possible if I kept up the facade that everything was okay.
It's okay to not be okay.
I'm still learning this, but each time I share, each time I accept assistance and encouragement, each time I give assistance and encouragement, the lesson is reinforced.
So I challenge you this week... Speak up if you're feeling overwhelmed. Speak up if you feel like you're crumbling, unsure of how to cope... Be honest with the people in your life that you love and that love you. Stop pretending to have it all together. And you'll see how "freeing" that is. Not completely obviously, but having that extra layer of facade removed will be one less burden to bear. From there, maybe you'll feel stronger to be open with more people. You'll be surprised at how much untapped support you have 💚
P.S. If you feel like sharing publicly, use the hashtag #talkaboutuncomfortablethings, I'd love to help support where I can as well.