It’s World Mental Health Day!

I’m so happy because today is World Mental Health Day!

I’m happy because this day actually exists, I didn’t even know it was a real day, but it is.

Granted there are very many special days that are unknown. Like there’s a national pizza day, national smile day, national dance day, etc…

I don’t know who came up with all of these national and world days.  But to whoever brought forth, made known, or created World Mental Health Day, I just want to hug them and never let go.

I mean on this day, I feel like I’m not in a labeled box.

I’m not some weird human being that could be from another planet.

I don’t feel different about who I am.

I feel accepted today.

I feel like I’m not alone today.

Actually, mentally I had a great day! My anxiety was at a reasonable level and I’m happy. I didn’t have much work today so my stress and worry level are down. I spent the day with my best friend and it was just a really good day today.

Unfortunately, not all my days are like this. But that’s ok.

Because today has just been a reminder to me that:

On my good days, yes I’m going to smile, I’m going to fight, and I’m not going to give up. And it’s amazingly great.

But, on my bad days, I’ll feel like giving up. But that’s okay because it makes me who I am. But it doesn’t make me weak, it makes me honest. It makes me human.

Sometimes, my anxiety makes me feel like I’m not human.

It makes me feel distant from the world. Different, a bad different.

And I hate it, but at least I don’t let it take over my well being.

A few months ago, I would have denied the fact that I had a mental illness, I mean how could I admit to suffering to something so extreme? How could I walk onto this path and just accept myself as having what I’ve only read in Health Textbooks? How could I walk under the harsh generalization that society has about mental illnesses?

How could I do that?

It was hard; admitting and accepting. But when I finally did, I received something I’ve never had before: Clarity.

I could finally understand myself. I could finally realize why I was “quiet” and “shy” and didn’t like big crowds and never raised my hand and could never order my own food and had heart palpitations when I came to early to school or came to late and why I worried about little things and why I’m scared about other’s perceptions so much and why I worry so much if I’ve hurt somebody’s feelings and why I hide in the bathroom in social settings.

I had to stop lying to myself. And when I did, I actually improved my mental health instead of deteriorating it.

One of the reasons that I’m mentally healthy today is because I owned up to my mental illness, and I talked about it. I shared that piece of myself with you guys, I talked about it with my friends, and I make sure that I never expect too much out of myself.

I’m not a fan of my anxiety, but it makes me who I am.

It helps guide me to the things I do and don’t like. It shows me my comfort zone and my breaking point. It opens up my eyes to not only my suffering but others.

Not only has accepting that I have anxiety helped my health, but it has also opened my eyes. It was like I was living in my own bubble in the past years, and I forgot that there are a whole bunch of other people who are suffering and in pain. My anxiety has given me a passion to helping those in need and those who have mental illnesses like my mom and myself.

My mom has schizophrenia, bipolar disorder, and depression and I never understood it as a kid. Who was my mom shouting at? Who was she talking too? Why is she almost always picking a fight? Why is she so angry? Wasn’t she just happy a minute ago? Why is she always sick? Why is she still sleeping when it’s day? Why did she ask me what year it is?

I always saw things on the perception side instead of the reality side. I actually thought the thoughts that society has about mental illness. I was just judging my mom without knowing anything about the pain that she goes through, and I hated myself. My mom wasn’t/isn’t a bad person. There are just bad things inside of her head which causes her pain. She was/is going through more hell than I could possibly imagine.

No one ever understood my mom, actually it still feels like no one understands her now. This is my basis for why I didn’t want to accept my mental illness. I didn’t want to feel like I was alone in my suffering. My mom deserves the world, but sometimes it feels like I’m the only one willing to give her that. She goes through pain everyday, but people never understand her, will they ever?

I’m just really happy that today exists. Because I don’t feel like I’m alone. I don’t feel like my mom is alone. I feel like everyone who feels alone and down and alienated and in a labeled box can come forth and be themselves. They can say that “No, I had a bad day because I have ________ but it’s okay because I know that there are people who will be there with me and who are going through the same thing I’m going through.

We can also tell the world what we are and who we are, what we have and why we have it. We can say who we are without worrying about being judged. Without perceptions. Without the fear of the stigma. We can just be us.

That’s the most comforting thing in the world to me.

October 10 doesn’t have to be the only official day of World Mental Health Day, to ourselves we can make everyday this day.

We can promise to look out for ourselves and for others. We can vow not to judge ourselves or others. We can promise to love ourselves and others no matter the strings attached no matter the labels.

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