Our world is full of many beautiful things. Things that are pure, truly good, and beneficial to our existence. They help us along the way by picking us up when we fall or guiding us away from the things that can do us harm. They are the light that keeps secure in a blanket of safety and peace. But for everything that keeps us afloat, there will always be the things that drag us down. That grab onto our legs and pull back under the surface. A shark yanking us under the waves where we were once safe a moment ago, now submerged in an ocean of pressure and uncertainty; an ocean of fear. When we were just recently feeling fine, we are suddenly now feeling lost and suffocating. We are trying to get back to the surface but that monster keeps dragging us down, farther and farther into darkness. These are the moments when you are not okay. The moments when you don’t feel right and like everything is off. These moments will come often, especially in the recovery process and beyond. And these moments are okay.
We taught to keep our heads up. When we take a hit, we keep going. Shake it off and move on. There is some real truth to this idea and some real strength. Your ability to bend and not break is huge in recovery. You will learn to take a hit and keep going. But sometimes, you just have to be hit and feel it. Sometimes, that hit is really hard and it knocks you out. It leaves you breathless, on the ground, reeling from it. Confusion mounting inside of you and a fear of what’s yet to happen. We’ve been told to get back up and fight back, but we want you to know that sometimes it’s okay to stay down. Sometimes, we just need to take a break and feel the pain of the hit. There are things that will shake us to our core and really leave us rattled, and it’s important to not take those moments lightly or push them out of the way. We need to let those moments run their course and feel the emotions that come with them. Suppressing the pain isn’t always beneficial and can do a lot of damage. That pain can latch onto a place deep inside of you, where it will fester and grow. By then, it’s bigger than it ever needed to be and it’s harder to deal with. It’s not cowardly to let yourself feel, let yourself be down. There is beauty in the hurt, and you have to let yourself see that beauty. Pain can give you a new perspective, a new lens to look through. It can change the way you feel and interact with the world around you.
We have been told too much in our lives that not being okay is bad. We have been told that it’s… well, not okay. We couldn’t disagree more. Our lives are complicated and full of things that can fall apart at any moment. We are sensitive, emotional beings that all have a breaking point to some degree. We can take some hits and keep going, but we can also take hits and need to step back. If we continually try to just ignore things that hurt us and make us feel a certain way, then we are restricting our ability to experience something and learn from it. There is too much value in feeling to prohibit ourselves from doing so. We are complex machines that need to recuperate, occasionally. There is no shame in that and there never should have been in the first place.
Coming to Terms with The Fact That We Don’t Have to Be Okay
It is okay to not be okay. Don’t let your brain or another person tell you that you can’t be down. You don’t have to be happy all the time, you don’t have to feel fine, you don’t have to act like you have it all figured out. Your pain is just as valuable as your joy. We grow through pain and we grow through being in a bad place. Feeling lost or broken is not a sign of weakness, it is a sign that you have dared to adventure out of your comfort zone. You have adventured out in a world that tries to keep you in one place. Don’t let it keep you there. Keep feeling and keep falling down. Keep laying down after the hit and feeling the pain it has left. Keep being you and keep learning from those moments. They will ultimately be the building blocks of who you are. Never feel ashamed of not feeling at your best or feeling down. Be proud of the fact that you, a human being who holds so much beautiful complexity, are not okay. It’s okay.
If you, or anyone you know, is struggling with anxiety or mental illness,
do not hesitate to contact the team here at True Recovery at (866) 399-6528.