This week has been the ultimate week of chaos. If it could happen, it has. Don’t get me wrong. The world is not ending. We are ok. Things have just been really rough. I spent the last two or three days in a funk. I am still there to some extent. I am not angry. I am not bitter. I am just done. Over the last couple days, the people closest to me have gone out of their way to try and help me feel better. Here’s the thing I wish I could say to them, “It’s ok to not be ok sometimes.”
It’s OK to not be OK sometimes!
Let me backpedal a little bit to set the scene for you. I don’t want you to think this is a big tantrum. In the last 2 weeks we have lost one of our working vehicles, had a financially stressful situation arise, flooded the kitchen sink out, been rejected for important job opportunities, and dealt with some crippling emotional blows from family we thought cared more than they do. When you combine this storm it isn’t easy. We also learned of a friend who is not doing well in her fight against cancer and I have been coming close to the anniversary of the loss of my grandma to cancer. It’s just a really rough week and a lot to process at once.
With so much going on people have felt this overwhelming need to cheer me up. I understand that. I don’t like seeing people I care about hurting either. However, it’s ok to not be ok sometimes. I am going to share a few of the things that were said and done that could have been left undone as well as some reasons I think it’s ok to not be ok sometimes.
Before I write this I want to make sure you know that there are situations where seeking help is advised. If there are thoughts of harming yourself or someone else please reach out for help. You can reach the Suicide Prevention Hotline at 1 (800) 273-8255. There is a difference between working through something and being in an unsafe position. As a suicide survivor, I beg you to get the help you need. Your worst day is nothing compared to the good ahead of you. By choosing suicide you aren’t ending the bad. You are removing the chance for things to get better.
“God has this.”
I know. Trust me. I get it. I know that God has this. I know that something good will happen soon. I know that something will change and our situation will be different. Instead of reminding me 20 times, please just pray for me. I am working through something right now and I am not ready for “God has this” yet. If you have someone you love who is walking through something hard, pray for them. It could change everything. Sometimes people who are going through things aren’t exactly happy with God. They may be working through their faith and trying to combine their picture of who God is with their situation. Pray for clarity and pray for peace but don’t try to influence this season of working through this. It may be the catalyst for a strong faith for this person in the future.
Talk to me.
My sweet amazing husband made this mistake last night. I had a very long and draining day and the last thing I wanted to do was talk. Between the day I had and the headache I was fighting I didn’t feel like it. He was sure that if we could just talk I would feel better and everything would be fine again. It wasn’t. Instead, it made me cry which made my headache worse and made the situation feel much more frustrating for me. If you are dealing with someone who says they don’t want to talk respect that. Sometimes people just need time to grieve or process through what they are feeling before sharing it.
Let’s go out.
I am an introvert to the core of my being. While going out may recharge you, it actually does the opposite for me. A night out with friends though fun could drain what little energy I have left. Instead, offer me a night in with a good movie or a good book. Suggest something that doesn’t involve much thinking or peopling. You would be surprised how well that can work. When someone is working through something the last thing they want to do is have to fake it in front of people.
Let me grieve.
Grief is a natural process. Everyone will experience it differently. Instead of trying to rush your friend or family member through grief let them experience it and work through the different stages of grief in their time. I never knew how much of a void a person could leave in a life. Though you may feel powerless when your friend or family member is in the middle of this grief it may be just what they need to move forward. Put your feelings aside and look at what your friend of family member needs most.
Things will get better.
If you are dealing with someone struggling with depression they may not believe things will get better. That is different. I am not referring to depression in this post. I am talking about a few days where things are just hard and a person needs to turn off the chipper and just be real. The words things will get better can be very frustrating. I am sure that at some unforeseen time things will get better and I will look back on this season and celebrate the good that came from it. However, when I am trying to process the situation as it is I don’t want to hear things will get better. That’s the same as promising me pixies and rainbows. Skip it and just be there to listen or just be quiet with me if needed.
Suck it up.
Do you want the quickest way to push a person too far? Tell them to just suck it up when they are going through something. People don’t always have to be cheerful. It’s ok to have days where you are still mad and just over it.
If your friend or family member is not hurting anyone with their season of just done let them be. It’s not your job to fix them. It’s your job to love them.
The BEST thing you can say
If you want the best thing you can possibly say here it is.
“I understand you are going through something. I am here for you. If you need me quiet. I am quiet. If you need to talk, we can talk. Whatever you need, just let me know.”
It seems simple but it really could change everything.
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