It's OK to Not be Okay - A Guest Post

By Natasha Velez

In the depths of my mind I know as I awaken that today is another day I may or may not be OK. My mind is clouded with questions and racing thoughts that take hold of the gracefulness of the morning and press for answers. There is a reluctance in rising to conquer the day, and then at that very moment I realize I’m not OK.

You create excuses and stories of exhaustion and too much to do when in all honesty you’re just not OK.

Today is a day I don’t want to go to work. Today is a day I don’t even want to waken. I know deep down the rapid cycling of my bipolar disorder will make sure I am motivated soon enough, but for now I am mellow and disheveled. Yesterday the curtains were hung, the dishes were washed, a five-course meal was prepared from scratch, and then even some reports for work were completed. Today there will be no coffee, and the energy to even eat has dissipated. Yesterday I played and laughed with my children at their silly stories and silly personalities, but today I can’t even leave the room. I cannot withstand a hug or a kiss. Yesterday I was the most gracious and attentive wife, and today I cannot even be bothered to text back or listen to the pressing concerns of the love of my life.

Today is not my best day, but I must know it won’t be my worst day.

I take deep breaths and tell myself I will be OK. I lie and tell everyone I’m alright. I’m not though… I’m overwhelmed over the simplest of things. I have moments I am unsure of myself. Moments that compile themselves on my insecurities and suffocate me with uncertainty. Moments where I try to breathe in and hold in all the pain and confusion. These are the moments that define who I am. These moments come and try to break me down and make me into the person I fight so hard to not be.

I know that these are little victories. The smallest of victories but a victory nonetheless. I woke up. I brushed my hair. I went to work. Even though the smile may not be genuine and the day may not be the best, I know that today, it’s OK to not be OK.

*****

Natasha Velez

About the Author: Natasha Velez born and raised in the streets of New York City, is a Financial Controller and Public Accountant practicing in Central Florida. She suffers with Rapid-Cycling Bipolar Disorder and is a blogger and writer for sites such as The Mighty, The Huffington Post and Mybipolarlifeonline.com. She recently started writing a book on her experiences with mental illness and overcoming the stigmatism that comes with it in the professional industry and her personal life. Her acceptance and passion for fighting the stigma that comes with mental illness is what caused her to become a mental health advocate and writer on the subject.