How are you doing emotionally?
I reserve my energy in order to do “normal” things in my life. Last week I used my energy to get my haircut. So there I was in the chair getting my haircut while my middle son hung out and waited after his turn. My hairdresser asks, “How are you doing emotionally?”.
It hit me what an important and meaningful question that is to ask. Yeah, all this physical stuff is some real bullshit. It’s frustrating and difficult. That doesn’t come close to what it does on the emotional level. I’ve had my life ripped away from me. I’ve lost my independence, health, business, my social life-line, and the one thing I felt was my calling in less time it gets a delivery from Ubereats. My emotional well-being isn’t good. How can it be?
People avoid discussing our emotional well-being. It’s a difficult and many times uncomfortable conversation. Knowing that my son was sitting right there I didn’t want to paint how bleak the picture is but I also don’t want to sugarcoat the situation. This whole ordeal has been tough on the entire family.
We talk openly about our mental health in our family. We talk about going to therapy and how that’s just as normal as going for a physical check-up. There is no way to do this without professional help. I’m not ashamed that I need help during this transition. I’m grateful for the hour of space I have to process, contemplate, and fall apart.
My answer was simple, “It’s really difficult. I’m in therapy and taking it one day at a time”.
The conversation isn’t one I’m having often. It struck me that more of us probably need to ask each other how our emotional self is doing. Check-in on one another and be okay when the person responds with not so great or things are hard. Be able to sit down beside them and say it’s okay to not be okay. I’ll sit with you for a bit and if you want to share, I’ll listen.
Maybe if we did this more then we’d break down barriers and remove the stigma about our emotional health. Make it normal to have mental health checkups and see professionals. Life isn’t easy. No matter who we are at some point we experience hurt, heartache, illness, and death. We shouldn’t have to power through or swallow our emotions. This is what makes us human.
So yes, my emotional well-being isn’t doing great right now. It might not be for some time and that’s okay.