Mental health matters.
Maybe you won’t believe that coming from a 20-year-old college student who openly and freely admits that she has no idea what she’s doing half the time, but if there’s one thing that I’ve learned from living on this earth for 20 years, it’s that some things are better left said, or rather screamed from the highest mountain top. One of those, I might add, is talking about something that, even in 2020, still feels like the hardest thing to mention in simple conversation.
Mental health is something that, up until a couple short months ago, I would’ve been better off imagining never existed. It was easier for me to pretend that I didn’t struggle with anything at all rather than dealing with my issues, in all the forms they came in, head on.
I was scared. Of what? I don’t know. Sometimes, I imagine I was scared of letting my guard down, even for just a moment. In fact, I’d spent 20 years putting up a wall so high that no one could see over it. No one could see the real me. Other times, I imagine I was simply scared of admitting it. Scared that giving my pain a name would make it real and inescapable, when in reality, every moment spent denying what was hurting me most was only making that wall higher and higher and higher.
In these moments, these really dark, trying times, I would’ve given anything to hear someone tell me the exact same thing that I am telling you right now: What you’re feeling, regardless of how extreme, is valid.
I get it. Mental health is hard to live with. It’s even harder to talk about, but that doesn’t mean you should bottle your suffering up for you and you alone.
If there’s someone in the world who could take even a fraction of that pain away from your tired heart, run to it. You have your entire life to play the hero. Right now, in this moment, allow yourself to need someone. Don’t be afraid of being vulnerable. It’s okay to need a little help. It’s even better to say it out loud. You’re not weak. You’re not seeking attention. You’re merely a strong person living in a world that is constantly trying to tear down your feelings.
This is important: Your feelings matter. What you’re dealing with matters. The person you are becoming matters. You matter. Don’t ever, ever, ever forget that.