There is a certain relief when the end of January rolls around. First of all, it means that we are supposedly over the worst of winter. I know, February and March can be brutal. As an older person I can tell you stories. But I suspect you, along with my kids, just groan when I say that so will leave it alone. But I do have to pay for my golf membership this week so that, at least in my dreams, gets me a little closer.
But more importantly, this week brings about the annual BellLetsTalk day. A really good reminder that we need to talk about it. Just to be clear, and I know most of you know this, when I say talk about it, I mean talk about our mental health.
So as much as I have tried putting on a brave face, things are getting to me. It’s been tough. Obviously, we have the ongoing pandemic. I remain, for all intents and purposes, working from home. And the opinions on all things pandemic are becoming more fractitious than ever. Apparently, that’s not a word but you all know what I mean. We have had copious amounts of snow which I know will be a benefit to anyone that grows crops and enjoys green grass. But it sure is a pain now. And then what about those cold temperatures.
My wife and I were chatting over the weekend. She told me about feeling down, not seeing the kids and grandkids, not getting together with family, and not socializing much. I have a notion she is getting tired of hanging out just with me. And, quite frankly, I am getting tired of hanging out with me too.
I told her that I was feeling down as well. And then I suggested to her that I had been putting on a brave face and trying to fool her into thinking I was doing okay. She gave me a strange look and told me I had not be fooling her at all.
Over the years I have talked on many occasions. I have come to the realization that there are so many out there that listen. So many people that do understand. So many that welcome the opportunity to help. From the neighbor who took the time to ask when I was in my darkest moment. From the friend who listened without judgement. From a wife and partner who never gave up on me. From kids who did care even when I thought I was protecting them from the demons of my inner self. To the countless people who approached me when they realized that I, too, was experiencing what they had felt for years.
There is a certain camaraderie out there. As long as we hide behind a façade of happiness, of contentment, of peace, we never find it. But it is there. And it is so helpful. Thank you to all those that have taken the time to listen to me in the past. Thank you to all who have encouraged without judgement. Thank you to all those that stuck with me even when I stumbled and fell. Thank you to all who continue to care. You have no idea how helpful you have been in my journey. A journey that continues and will continue to the day I die.
So if life is getting you down a bit, if life events have left you reeling, or if your mood is subdued, find someone to talk to. Its okay not to be okay. Its okay to need help. Be kind to yourself and find someone to talk to. It will make life better. Make it a good one.