We always try to encourage and talk about how it’s okay to seek help with our mental illness, but we never talk about how hard giving ourselves permission to receive that help can be.
I’m in that position right now actually. These past few months have been very difficult, from the birthday of my departed best friend, to my father holding my mother and I at gun point.
After I moved in with my two friends, I cried on the floor in my new-found home for over a week straight. I had to leave my job early most days for weeks because I couldn’t function properly.
I knew I needed help but accepting that I needed it was hard and frustrating. I don’t want to need help. I want to be able to handle this on my own like I have things before, but I can’t and it’s so frustrating that it makes me cry and I feel terrible. My co-worker knew things weren’t okay and suggested I speak with our store manager about our counselling programme. I walked up to my manager’s door and just paused. Those thoughts of not being strong enough came knocking at my own door. I walked away from her office three times until I finally walked in and asked to speak with her. It was odd walking out from there. What may seem like a small victory was a huge win and a step in the right direction for me.
Didn’t feel like it though.
All that was left to do was to call and make an appointment. Three weeks past and I still haven’t.
“I’ll get better on my own” I say to myself. I do well for a few days, but my depression comes back and hits me hard reminding me I need help. “I’ll call later today.” But my depression takes away a lot of motivation to do anything so I don’t make the call. I feel like all I’m doing is making excuses and that this is foolish and shouldn’t be a thing I struggle with doing.
I have to remember something important and so do you.
People who enter the mental health field do so for a reason. The same reason I became a musician, the same reason people become artists of all kinds, the same reason we do anything;
Because they are passionate about it. Because they want to help others in some way.
No one spends that much time in school, those stressful late nights, and early mornings without a reason.
These strangers are just friends you haven’t met yet.
I understand that you may feel like, “I’m paying them, it’s like I am paying them to care.” But that is so far from the truth.
You are paying them for their services, yes, but so they can pay their bills, you are helping them to help others. You can’t buy someone’s concern, love or kindness. You are buying their time but not what comes from their hearts.
We need to learn to accept the kindness and love others want to give us. It’s a lesson I have been learning lately. When a friend wants to buy you lunch, don’t argue against it, let them. You can always buy theirs another day. In that same way, we should accept the love, support, and kindness these strangers want to give us. All we must do is reach out. Reaching out is no small thing like some people will say. It’s a very big deal and these “strangers” understand that.
There are so many people out there in this world wanting to love and support you, you just have to let them.
If you learn anything from this, I hope with all my heart that you see that accepting help for your mental illness and giving yourself permission to seek that help, is also giving yourself permission to accept love and kindness from others.
All my love, Isaac
Isaac Kestral, aka InProgression, is a musician who believes in the power of evolution. A belief evident in more than just his pseudonym, his music is progressive in nature, joining the ranks of other future bass artists. A unique blend of ambient composer, Tom Day, and future bass/pop duo, Louis the Child.