Maybe the others can't see you, but I can.

I see you. You're struggling. I can see it in your face. I can see it in your eyes. The way it looks as if being tired gave you two black eyes. Your eyes heave in the weight of the heavy bags they carry.

Your eyes are dark, hollow like you haven't slept in days. And it feels like you haven't. Sleep comes and goes and when it stays, the nightmares roam free and you're not fast enough to outrun them. I can see you're struggling in your eyes.

The way your depression creeps its way out and manifests into the tears that stream down your cheeks, down your neck, onto your chest. The way your anxiety controls your leg as it bounces up and down and up and down and up and down.

You're jittery and frantic with anxiety shooting out of your fingertips like sparks that might set your body on fire if you don't listen to the OCD that tells you to tap your fingers five times. Then ten times. Then each finger one time.

But remember to bounce your leg, too. Up and down. Up and down. Tap, tap, tap. All of your mental illnesses merging into one and coursing through your mind and body with its venom. But you can't fight your own brain. Your own emotions.

So you tap, tap, tap. Bounce, bounce, bounce. Always counting. Always thinking. Always paranoid that the doomsday cloud you can never seem to escape may rain down terror at any turn in your life.

You wonder if everyone's mad at you.

Do they hate you? Are thinking about what you said yesterday? What you said 3 years ago? Do they think you're strange? Are they ever going to talk to you again? Are they mad at you? Did you say "good morning" the wrong way? Are they mad at you?

Do they know? Do they know the way you obsess over every conversation? Every word? Each syllable?

Do they know? Have they figured out that you feel trapped in your own mind? That your emotions have you enslaved to their games and questions of "am I good enough?"

Are they mad at you? Tap, tap, tap. Bounce, bounce, bounce.

Sometimes your anxiety, your depression, your OCD... it sneaks up on you. You aren't yourself.

You feel off. It's a bad day. Then it turns into a bad week. Then a bad few months. And on and on and on.

I can see you're struggling.

But... I'm here to tell you, that it's okay.

It's okay to struggle. It's okay to feel emotions so deeply. You feel so much. The pain you feel hurts so deeply, it's so deep-rooted. But with dark there is light. You may feel the hurt deeply. But you also love deeply.

You feel love and happiness intensely. It feels like looking into a fire and being able to touch the flames. It's like watching the light shine on the water and feeling yourself dance along with the way it moves.

You feel so deeply. It moves inside of you. You may be struggling, but you are growing. You must struggle to grow. You must know the dark to recognize the light. You must be close friends with the hurt and pain so that you may treasure, love, and cherish happiness.

I can see you're struggling. And I can see that you're growing.

But most importantly, I can see you.

I see you. I see you with all of your flaws, your emotions, your anxiety, your depression, your OCD, your smile, your warmth. I see all of the things that make you, you.

You are the sum of all of the things that you feel. You feel richly, deeply, beautifully. No matter the emotion, good or bad. You feel. And that's what makes you human. That's what makes you beautiful. That's what makes you, you.

Tap, tap, tap. Bounce, bounce, bounce.

I can see you.

.... Do you think they're mad at me?