I still struggle. There are times I still feel lost. There are times I still feel like I’m drowning. There are still times my brain goes numb and I forget how to think. There are times still times I wake up and don’t remember where I am. There are still times the emptiness of the rooms mirrors the emptiness that I feel. There are still times my chest feels tight and it’s hard to breathe. There are still times when everything feel surreal.
But, I’m learning that feeling that way – still feeling that way is okay. For almost fifteen years I had come to rely on one person, had turned to them for everything. For almost fifteen years that one person was always there. Whether it was to share something funny I saw, to bounce ideas off of, to dream with, to simply be with – that person was a constant. Except all of that isn’t my life anymore. And adjusting to this new truth is exactly that: an adjustment.
If there wasn’t that pit in my stomach sometimes, if I didn’t feel the emptiness that still pulls at my heart…then I wouldn’t be human. If I didn’t allow myself to feel the way I feel, then that’s when I would not be okay. If I didn’t stop to acknowledge those feelings, then I would be denying the truth of what I face each day. If I tried to bury the feelings, then I know that one day they would just erupt. It’s okay to not be at your best all of the time.
Feeling lost. Feeling sad. Feeling alone. Feeling empty. All of these feelings are okay. It’s okay to not be okay sometimes. It’s okay to acknowledge them, the sad or negative feelings…it’s just not okay to let them become permanent houseguests. When these feelings hit me, I let them. When these feelings decide it’s time for another visit, I welcome them in. I hear their stories. I listen to what they have to say. I sit with them for as long as is necessary. But then after a time, I tell them that it’s time for them to leave. I don’t allow them to stay longer than is necessary. I clean up from their visit, and get ready to face what’s next.
Feeling happy. Feeling hopeful. Feeling light. Feeling confident. These are the ones I want to welcome in each day. These are the feelings that I ask to come visit and stay as long as they would like. It’s important that we celebrate the best moments of our lives. It’s important to choose joy.
But it’s also okay that we acknowledge our lows as well as our highs. It’s importnat that we realize that our lives are in constant motion. Just like a roller coaster, sometimes we have to go down before we can go back up. It’s okay to not be okay.