Can I vent for a second? I don't have the luxury of those college therapy sessions so I need to get it out one way or another. One of the hardest things about being a black woman in current times is feeling the need to always be strong and exude all the things society doesn't view us as; in other words, do not be the angry black woman. Be better, not bitter. Lemme tell you something; pretending is exhausting. Cause at the end of the day, you have to face your truth when the audience is gone. My good friend Courtney wrote a similar post a couple weeks ago that discusses glowing in the midst of darkness (Glow in the Dark).
It took me a long time to realize that it's okay to feel. It's okay to exist within your emotions. Even now, when I start to feel something that seems foreign, I have to remind myself that it's okay to feel that. For a while now, I've been fighting a particular recurring feeling. Anything that would make it surface in the slightest form had to be discontinued – I'd tell myself: "I don't need that type of negativity in my life" and proceed to live life ignoring this feeling. But somehow, some little thing would always remind me of the one thing I was trying so hard to avoid. Even writing about it now has me in an uncomfortable mood. The thing with avoidance is that somehow, some day, you have to face the very thing you're trying to wish away. My mom has a weird but accurate analogy about this: if you are injured/wounded and you don't correctly address it, on the surface, it'll seem just fine. However, under that bandage, it'll fester and become infected. Something may come along that'll further irritate this wound to the point that it's unbearable and you HAVE to seek special medical attention. In the midst of having a specialist properly clean and dress your wound, you may cry and scream with all the pain you're in, but you know that the worst is over because it'll start to heal.
Did you hear that? We must experience pain to heal! That's how we are; that's our healing process. Right now, I'm avoiding it because I know my painful reality is going to hurt more than anything else. I tend to ramble but the point all of this is to say it's okay to not be okay. We're humans with feelings and emotions, and we're entitled to that. Getting over something doesn't come with a time stamp, take as much time as you feel necessary. And being okay doesn't mean you won't have a wave of random emotions. It's normal to have a moment in the midst of a good day: take a 5-minute bathroom break, cry it out, clean yourself up and proceed. Deep breaths through it all. I really think I'm writing this for myself, because I need to hear this, but I know someone else needs this as well. Being okay really comes from accepting your truth, whatever that may be. It means that you're honest with yourself and your feelings. Start facing your reality; and tell yourself "It's okay to not be okay."