I have been following the R U OK? Day for a number of years. One of my interests is in the everyday question of personal well being (link).
This week, the everyday was brought into sharp focus by a friend. He wrote an open letter to someone who was having some personal challenges.
I saw the open letter as a very public way of sharing the thin ice on which we all travel.
My friend wrote:
Just going to say a little bit to support you, maybe something you can get from it. I’ve struggled with anxiety and depression most of my adult life. I’ve not wanted to leave the house, I’ve felt I was going to lose control, I’ve felt everyone could tell I was “different”.
Well, as it turns out, I am different – and so is everyone else. But nobody else can tell that by looking at you.
Set yourself small goals, and if you do have panic attacks, accept that they are just part of what makes you, you. Think of all the times the bad stuff didn’t happen. But mostly, accept it is part of you.
I’ll have bad days, and if I need a day to compose myself, I take it.
Take time to accept what you are.
End of speech.
I thought this was a wonderful letter. It has a profound honesty and a clarity that have helped me think how we support each other … everyday.