When it doesn’t ‘feel’ okay to ‘be’ not okay.
I hope you are ‘okay’. Whatever that means to you.
In the mental health world there is a big movement that supports the notion –
“It’s okay to not be okay.”
I’ve always felt a bit mixed about this. I mean, I get it. Like, of course it’s okay if we are not okay (though it’s not pleasant) but it often doesn’t feel okay for the person who’s ‘not okay’ to be, ‘not okay’.
Have I lost you already? *I wonder how many times I’m going to write the word ‘okay’ in this blog? Sweepstake anyone?
Last night, I was not okay. I was trying to work out what I was. I wasn’t sitting uncomfortably with my more familiar anxiety, my dreaded paranoia, my sad depressed states I can get in (my common difficult feelings Im more accustomed to). I really felt like I had consumed something as it was an experience I don’t recall I have ever encountered before, yet like a paradox, it also felt a bit nostalgic despite simultaneously feeling alien to me. It shared similarities with when I’m anxious or in a paranoid state but my heart wasn’t racy and my chest didn’t hurt. Yet the aftermath today is heavily similar to that of after an attack of anxiety. I’ve been very fragile. Definitely worth noting I have a bit of a cold so my physical strength isn’t great too which probably doesn’t help as I feel pretty run down all over!
Last night, my mind was going at what felt like over 1000 miles per hour with thought after thought and worry after worry. Linking things easily that might not make sense for others to link. I asked my husband this morning,
“Did I scare you last night?” He replied “Yes”. I replied that I scared myself. Not in a traditionally scared or threatened way. I just couldn’t believe what my mind was doing. Quite how powerful it was. Its speed. Hence the feeling of trippy euphoria. Like I was under the influence (I wasn’t!).
I’ve not been sleeping well. So I woke in the night with the same whirling mind. Luckily a colleague and friend was awake and I was able to share. I was able to share without thought of what I was about to share being shameful or of embarrassment. Heavily because I was so entrenched in what felt like a different world (so I thought) that I couldn’t have possibly have felt those usual experiences attached to what I was sharing. (Usually sharing intimately the inner workings and feelings of my brain doesn’t exactly come bouncing off me without self judgement and worry!) Also, it did help who I was sharing with.
Today was a different matter. Despite still feeling a bit like I’m in a strange headspace, I’ve been more aware. I’ve had moments where I have cared again what I share with others. I’m now checking in with people if what I say is ‘okay’ with lots of things I say. It’s kicking in again.
People won’t know this (and somehow maybe I am still slightly in the brave or different headspace to be able to say) that when I’m not okay, I tend to ask my husband (no joke) at least 10 x within the space of a couple of hours. “Are you okay with me?” and mutter to myself, “I’m okay. You’re ok” (meaning me).
In my trance like current state (pretty sleep deprived) I want people to know it might not feel okay to not be okay, but you are not alone in that. I’ve never had such a weird experience as I have just last night but what I do know, just from being able to share with a colleague, some dear friends and my husband, is that it doesn’t make us any less loveable. The human experience is so surreal and subjective. What is okay if you want to, is to share your experience. Also if you need to, which in my case, this needed to come out. It can be better out than in. I’m already feeling a relief.
I will be okay and just like they also say, “this too, shall pass.”