Maybe it was because we recently celebrated Father's Day and although my dad has been gone for almost 15 years, I still miss him terribly.
Maybe it was because my daughter (who is also my best friend) just left on a 6 month travel adventure and I will not see her again until Christmas.
Or maybe it was because I read where a pageant friend just lost her dad suddenly over the weekend. He was the same age as me.
Am I just facing my own mortality? 50 used to seem so far away but the reality is there are likely more days behind me than in front of me. And between the hot flashes, night sweats and raging hormones - menopause has made herself known with a vengeance and she is not taking any prisoners!
I have been surrounded by this dark cloud for a few days but like the stubborn woman that I am, I chose not to reach out to anyone to talk. Well, except my husband, who tries - bless his heart - but how do you deal with a crazy, irrational woman? If he talks to me, I scream at him. If he stays quiet, I scream at him. Poor guy. At least he loves me enough to remain patient and let me work through it.
I think the reality is that I have so many emotions bottled up inside that I'm not dealing with right now because I still have the need to be strong. I don't like to cry. I don't like to show emotion. Oh, I love to LOVE on people. I just don't like to show when I am truly hurting or in need. So I tuck it all away and just smile and wave (Madagascar reference).
Then on Friday I was speaking with a friend who began to share how she had just been in a "funk" for the past week or so. I had not shared how I had been feeling so as she began to communicate her raw emotions, I immediately felt a connection and understanding. In her words "nothing is wrong and I feel bad that I don't feel right".
I get it. We look at our lives and are so grateful for the things we have yet there are days when taking a shower is our greatest achievement. I asked my friend why she didn't call or text when she was feeling that way and she said she didn't want to bother me. Again, nothing was TRULY wrong, she said. She just didn't feel right.
This morning after my tear fest, I called another friend of mine to discuss an upcoming trip we are taking together. Again, I had not shared anything about how I had been feeling with her but as she started talking, I could immediately sense something was not right. She began to share that everything was okay - but everything was not okay. She had spent the past few days in and out of tears as she struggled to grasp her emotions. She continued to share that she just didn't feel right emotionally and was reaching out for help. I asked why she hadn't called me when she was feeling so bad. Her answer was the same as my other friend - "I didn't want to bother you."
My answer to both of them was the same - BOTHER ME!! If you fell and broke your leg, you would bother somebody to help drive you to the doctor. You wouldn't think twice about it. Then why do we think twice when dealing with our emotional health?
Ladies - and I speak to the ladies now only because we tend to carry the weight of the world on our shoulders - it is time to start bothering each other and lifting each other up.
We should not be concerned with reaching out to one another when we just are not feeling right. It's okay to not be okay. Your world can seem perfectly perfect yet you can still feel lost and alone. That doesn't make you weak. That doesn't make you any less powerful as a person.
I get it. I am the first person to not ask for help. And one of the most stubborn people you will most likely ever meet. I could have called either of my two friends last week when I started feeling bad and we could have worked through it together. But like them, I didn't want to be a bother. Everybody has their own problems - I surmised - so I will just deal with this on my own.
Here is the thing - sometimes you just can't. Sometimes you just need someone to talk to. And it doesn't have to be a long conversation. We aren't trying to save the world here - we are just looking for a little comfort as we navigate through this crazy thing called life.
I don't have all the answers. Half the time I don't even know the question. But when life gets you down, BOTHER ME! Send me a text if you just cannot talk. Or call me if you need someone to listen.
Find someone to be your "Bother Me Buddy". Someone who is there for you. Not judging you. Not trying to "fix it". Just someone who will listen and understand.
Social media has made us all "friends" yet true human interaction has fallen by the wayside. Don't be afraid to bother one another when things just don't feel right. I get it - life gets busy and we get consumed sometimes with our own lives. Guilty as charged. As I sit here writing this, I can think of numerous occasions where I wasn't as available as I should have been but it doesn't take much to brighten someone's day.
Mental Health needs discussed as much (or possibly more) as all the physical ailments our bodies often endure. If our brain isn't right, nothing else feels right.
As we begin to reach out to one another and share our thoughts and emotions, we begin to realize that we are truly not alone. There is actually something comforting about knowing someone else is going through the same thing and we don't have to fight this battle on our own.
You don't have to go through this alone! Let's start bothering one another!