Thursday, September 15, 2011

I am. But are you?

Today is RU OK? Day. It's a day about connections and the difference that they can make to a person who's struggling. It's about taking the time to ask, to really ask, someone if they are OK, and to be prepared to hear the answer properly, to supportively listen.

I am one of the fortunate ones. Even though I'm recovering from flu, even though I'm still battling a kidney infection, even though I have toddler tantrums and money worries and a hideously overgrown garden and a filthy house and fractious older kids to deal with, I also have no black dog on my back making it all unbearable. I get sad, mad and dangerous sometimes, life stresses me out and I crack open for a while, but it passes quickly, lightly, ultimately harmlessly. This is because I am not now depressed.

I have been in that place, though. My postpartum struggles after my first and third babies were never diagnosed, probably because I'm really good at masking (I suspect a lot of us are), but the bottom line was, for months after A was born and again after C was born, I was most certainly not OK. And I was sobbing inside for someone to ask me, to really ask me, and to give me permission to open the door to that pain.

Today I asked someone close to me if they were OK. For the first time, with tears in their eyes, this person admitted that they are not. I think it was a relief to them to speak this truth aloud.

So small a question to contain so great a thing. Ask it today.


  1. So true. So real. And such a small question to ask. Thanks.
    And I am v glad you got through your not OK stages after your children were born.

  2. How wonderful that you did that. And that your friend was able to be honest.
    And yes, that you're through those awful stages.
    I really believe that all of us, at some stage in our lives, will experience times of not being okay. Some more than others. But the more we can talk about it, the easier it is to get help.