Mental Health Awareness

May is National Mental Health Awareness month.

Let’s talk about it.

I share and heart positive memes when they come across my feed and fully support the work of TWLOHA. I believe in and advocate for mental health awareness. I’m walking on my own mental health journey but it’s often a lonely road.

I don’t talk much about my mental health with anyone. I journal which helps but sometimes I know I should do more. These past few months have been a mix of emotions for all of us. Even those of us who haven’t had to deal with the uncertainty of income are still out of our routines. We’re experiencing something we’ve never experienced before and that can take a toll on our mental health.

Some days I wake up and everything’s good. Other days I wake up and don’t want to get out of bed. I’m not the only one who feels this way. I know that because there are people I follow via Instagram who are talking about experiencing the same things.

Isn’t it freeing to know that we aren’t alone or that we can talk about these things more openly nowadays?

But if that’s the truth, if we can open up on days when we’re not okay, why do I still retreat into myself? Simply put, it’s a habit I haven’t broken out of yet. I taught myself that it’s safer to deal with my feelings by withdrawing into myself.

I’ve started sharing with my brother and sister weekly how I’ve been doing but there are still things I don’t divulge. I don’t talk about the days it’s harder. I know I can. I know they’ll provide me the space to talk about the hard things but, since it’s something we’ve never done, I continue to make the choice not to do it.

But I’ve been wondering, what would happen if I do choose to talk about my mental state? I know when I think about it, my body responds with tightened chest. I tell myself to stay strong as if strength is measured in smiles and half truths.

This is my attempt at honesty.

This is my attempt to say mental health is important and I know we don’t have to go through the hard days alone.

This is my attempt to say I’m not open like I want to be, but I’m working on it.

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