You want to know the absolute honest truth about life?
Life is hard- sometimes is sucks. And...
we won't always be okay.
But our society has conditioned us to always be "okay."
Have you ever noticed how in passing it has become a greeting to say "Hey, how are you?" and expect "good, and you?" in response?
But "How are you," is supposed to be a loaded question. Are you really good? Are you having a bad day? Are you stressed beyond belief? Are you really okay, or are you just the "okay" that society expects you to be?
I define "okay" as anything but okay. You may be hurting. You may be stressed. You may be depressed and full of worries. You may be grieving, or processing a trauma you have experienced. But one thing's for sure, you are most definitely not okay.
But you tell people that you are "okay" because that's what you feel is expected from you. When someone asks "Hey, how are you?" maybe we all just want to hear "I'm good," so we can continue on with our own lives. So maybe "okay" is what your parents expect you to be, or your friends. Or maybe, you so desperately want to be okay, that you try and force it.
Maybe you are simply "okay" because that means you don't have to face all the crap you have going on. It means you can walk around and have people think your life is all put together. It means that you can go on living without having to face raw emotions you aren't ready to face. It means that you can ignore the fact of how alone you feel in the dark of the night. Maybe you're simply "okay" because that's the best you can do right now.
I could say many cliche things to you, trying to convince you that you are not alone, trying to promise you that life gets better, that whatever is going on in your life is going to figure itself out. But I know that with how you are feeling in this moment, you might roll your eyes and think "you don't understand."
You're right- I don't understand exactly how you are feeling. BUT. I do understand what it feels like to cry until you can't cry anymore. I have questioned my purpose. I do know how it feels to look at your life and think there is nothing more it could offer, and to think "I can't do this anymore."
So before I tell you that you are not alone, or promise you that it gets better, I want to say one thing:
I am so sorry.
I am sorry that you feel alone in the dark of the night. I am so sorry that after laughing your heart out with your friends, you sob on the drive home. I am so sorry for all the times you had to remind yourself to simply breathe because you forget what feeling alive means. I am so sorry you have to silence yourself in the bathroom so your mom doesn't ask what's wrong. I am so sorry for any razor you have ever placed on your skin, or for any finger you have put down your throat. I am so very sorry for how numb you may feel. I am so, so sorry.
I also want to tell you that you aren't crazy- and your feelings are valid.
Know that how you are feeling is not made up, is not your fault, and most certainly not uncommon.
Life is hard. Life can be crappy. Life is very trying.
And at the same time, life is also refreshing, joyful, and rewarding; and you will feel all of that.
But- if we want to get to that light at the end of the tunnel, we're going to have to walk in the dark every now and then. Even if the light is hard to find, it's there- I promise.
Please- hold on to that hope. Please, keep going.
If you can't do that for yourself, do it for your mother who prays for you every night. Do it for your father who is sometimes too hard on you, but it's because he loves you. For your friend that calls you when life gets too hard, and the little cousin that looks up to you. For you significant other that loves you so much more than can put into words, or for your future husband or wife that will love you unfathomably. Most importantly, for your future self- hold on.
You need to understand, it is okay to not be okay. But it is not okay to give up.
You don't have to be okay in one day. You don't have to be on top of the world in a matter of minutes. It may take days, months, maybe even a year. But it starts with small steps. Get out of bed, eat a good breakfast, listen to your favorite artist, spend time with your parents. Write or draw or read, do whatever makes you get out of your head. No matter what- just keep going.
You can do this. You are strong. You are capable. You are loved. You are worthy of this life.
If we didn't go through bad times, we wouldn't be thankful for the good. And believe me, I know how hard that is to say to ourselves when we are in the bad times, when we are barely hanging on. I know how easily it is to discredit the good that has happened to us... or even feel like there hasn't been good times or moments when you were happy. That's when I encourage you to look at photographs of one of your birthdays, or holidays you spent with the family. Capture moments on a trip or when you're with friends, so you have something to look back on.
And when life starts to get too overwhelming, when you forget how to breathe; go on a drive with the windows down. Climb a mountain or a tree. Go star gazing. Dress up and go out on the town with friends. Go over to an art museum, or walk through a flower field. Take a dog for a walk. Eat the best dessert there is, or watch a movie that makes you laugh so hard you cry... or just watch a movie that makes you cry. Emotion is okay.
Do things that remind you of the good in life- things that remind you to breathe and simply be.
Read it again and again until you believe it: you can do this. you are strong. you are capable. you are loved. you are worthy of this life.
You have purpose.
You're doing and going to do great things.