It’s okay to feel unstable. It’s okay to disassociate. It’s okay to hide from the world. It’s okay to need help. It’s okay not to be okay. Your mental illness is not a personal failure.
Happy World Mental Health Day! Being the person who lives with anxiety, I have so much to say. First of all, I feel obliged to tell you that you MUST take care of yourself and of your mental health, Trust me, if you don’t put yourself in the first place, no one else will. I feel like this topic is something that people don’t talk much about and I don’t know why. Maybe it’s because people are ashamed of their mental illness. My first meeting with my therapist was such a failure mostly because I didn’t find support from my family. They thought that only ‘crazy’ people talk with therapists. At my first meeting I was so scared and I couldn’t talk about my problems openly. I thought they will not understand me. On the other hand, I was ashamed but not because I was meeting with the therapist, but because I thought the things that make me sad and anxious are stupid. I thought I was being silly while I was talking about my fears. Thankfully, my therapist told me that it’s okay to feel that way sometimes. It’s okay not to be okay.
Sometimes, I break.
And it’s still fine. My broken pieces are still me. Oh yes, I am worthy. On some days I keep asking God ‘why me?’ Well, if he didn’t believe in me, he wouldn’t let me go through all of this. That’s the only answer I can think of. And it’s true – each one of us is beautiful. Our mental illness do not define the person who we are. We are beautiful and there’s nothing we should be ashamed of. Just let you know, you are not alone in this. We can and we will win this battle.
Anxiety, noun: an uncomfortable feeling of nervousness or worry about something that is happening or might happen in the future
Many articles say that anxiety is a healthy feeling, which I find completely wrong. For so many years I’ve been dealing with this feeling and I have to say it is the worst thing. As a kid I wasn’t noticing anything ‘weird’ about my mental state. Or at least, I didn’t pay attention to it. Also in my elementary school everything was okay. I was that happy child who had many friends and I was satisfied with my life. The problem appeared sometime in my high school. When I was a teenager, I was complaining about almost everything, but I thought it was normal thing. Aren’t all teenagers like that? I started to build this negative self-image and I was never satisfied with my body. I started feeling uncomfortable in my own skin. I was watching all these girls in my school and I wanted to be like them. They were beautiful. As I changed my school, I lost contact with my old friends – even though they said we will keep in touch. I was so lonely there and I never let anybody come close, I was afraid that if I befriend someone, they will leave me just like my ex friends did. I was alone and I built my own world where my only company was music. I was listening to music basically 24/7. Even my classes couldn’t keep me away from it. I developed my own clothing style, which was so different from other teenagers. From then, I started getting ‘ugly’ and ‘angry’ looks from the people from my school. It was clear that they did not like me – they thought I was freak. I also heard their not-so-silent whispers making fun of me and my styling. Because, you know, it’s not cool to be different in high school. There was time when I pretended to be sick just not to go there, my school was my type of hell. I thought that my high school was built just to hurt me. And that’s when I started seeing my therapist. At the beginning it was so difficult for me to open up, I am a very shy person. With every new meeting it was easier for me to talk. I told him how I feel and he said it is okay to sometimes feel like that. Everybody has doubts and all of us break sometimes. But the important thing is to get up stronger than you were before. And I think it open my eyes… Even now, with my twenty-five years, I still carry this uncomfortable feeling of not being liked by my friends and family. I still catch myself walking in fear of losing my close ones. But I also remind myself that it means that I love them and nobody can say what tomorrow will bring, but it should never stop us from enjoying the moment. My point is that anxiety is a serious problem and I don’t think there is cure from it. We must talk to ourselves and the self-talk is so important, because it’s you – you are the creator of your future and you will enjoy the present moment as much as you let yourself enjoy it.