As a person who is hell bent on helping others get in touch with their own inner strength, these kind of words feel like a triumph to me. They feel like an important shift in the content that is usually consumed on social media, and it inspires me endlessly to see people speaking in this way.
It can be extremely hard to share things that point out vulnerabilities you might have, so often we curate our social media to seem as though we have a sense of humor around all things, that the things we struggle with aren’t just sad things but also trendy things. And I’m not here for it.
The idea that depression, anxiety, and ending a life are generously joked about is a direct result to the generational attitude that things are too painful to sink in to, things are too sensitive to allow actual conversation, and we might as well laugh about it. Its pretty macabre, in a murmurous guise.
I want to open up the painful things we keep barricading doors to, I want to create a glimpse of light inside the dark box, and I want us to talk about it.
Sure, it can feel extremely intimidating to take yourself and your trauma seriously, but that’s the thing, friend. You have to take yourself seriously.
We have to stop talking to ourselves as though our current moment is just in preparation for a moment down the line. Our hearts right now matter the most, our time right now exists the fullest, and there has to be something in ourselves that stakes a permanent claim on the here and now. You’re more than your trauma and you’re more than your past, but unless you take a secret look inside and stare those monsters in the eye, they will continue to stay monsters, they will continue to wreak havoc and spread gloom.
It’s not trendy to be miserable, it’s not cute to be ‘broken’. Instead, it’s actually embracing perpetual drowning. Your identity has to be more than your experiences. So what do we do? How do we shift our focus so strongly that the crew on our life boat stops plugging holes with irony and cheesecloth, and instead stops them entirely by building a new raft?
It’s the power of the word itself, friend. It’s bringing the light to the stories that you wish you knew how to articulate, it’s writing down what you actually feel about what happened and releasing all the things that are no longer serving you. There’s no great triumph in misery, there’s no badge of honor when you’re drowning. Look at how far you’ve managed to survive? Why stain that record with disinterest?
We have all survived everything we’ve gone through. There’s no need for words like ‘barely’ or ‘almost didn’t’ because the truth is, this situation IS black and white. We have survived. That’s it. Now we need to release that pain, and move forward towards living. And it starts with speaking our minds honestly, sharing our stories as encouraging anecdotes that end with ‘it get’s better’ and not ‘my trauma is more painful than yours’.
If you were given the opportunity to move away from your sadness while also helping future friends release their pain, wouldn’t you take that chance?
Write to yourself, write to those that hurt you, and write all the things down you kept buried so so so deep inside your guts. Then, watch the words float away and change. They started as an exercise in pressure release, but now they’re hopeful, because they’re off in the world on a mission to help someone else. That’s what I want social media to be for.
Your words and your stories matter, and it’s time we all started sharing them more often.