Mental health. We have been hearing more on this subject in the recent years. It is time we normalized “it’s okay to not be okay.” All our emotions are valid. Anger, sadness, joy, excitement, fear, they are all here for a reason. Emotions are energy. An energy that we want to flow through us and not get stuck. But most times, myself included, we bottle up and suppress what we feel to make others more comfortable. We must come to a space of grace for ourselves and realize that we are not responsible for how others perceive us or how others feel about us. That burden is too heavy to carry.
As moms, this is easier said than done. We are caring for our families — kids, husbands, fur-babies, and aging parents. We care. That is the magic word. We have the capacity and empathy of the feminine energy. We also have intuition and knowing that is a guide for our families. We are the magic that holds our family together. So more than ever, we need to create a healthy space for our mind.
I want to share a bit of my journey down the road to mental health in hopes that it helps. I have struggled with moderate depression for most of my life. I have struggled to be happy. I have struggled with always feeling like I am never enough. The perfectionist part of me is always pushing me to achieve more and be better, like always adding rungs to a ladder I am climbing. The bar is always getting set higher and higher and I lose sight of how far I have actually come. Some days life is so hard and I feel that I am tired of fighting the good fight.
I began a meditation/gratitude practice about 3 years ago. I truly have found a way to sit as the observer of my mind and see how it works and why. Meditation has been a powerful way for me to improve my mental health — come back to my body and connect with my breath instead of being caught up in the feelings and difficult moments. Gratitude actually rewires the brain to see things from a new and beautiful perspective. It is not a cure-all, but it has helped tremendously! It is as easy as 5 minutes in the morning with your coffee and 5 minutes at night as you lay your head down on the pillow. I have gotten to the place where I find myself craving quiet space, like driving with no radio on, turning the tv off at home, and (my favorite) taking a hot Epsom salt bath, with candles but no music. The sense of peace that meditation has brought is overwhelming. I have been able to look at situations and see where trauma is stuck, areas that I am triggered to respond in a certain way, and actually face/deal with past stored emotions. I also started seeing a counselor over a year ago. The growth I have seen from just being able to have a safe space to express my feelings and emotions is wild! The space that she holds for me I hold very dear, and I am committed to healing my mind. What we don’t deal with and face continues on in the next generation. So truly more than ever, I want my kids to stand on my shoulders and not have to go through the same things I have experienced.
Meditation is free and easy to implement. There are so many options on YouTube for guided sequences. And many practitioners, such as myself, lead free sessions on our social media. I am a firm believer in using holistic practices when ever possible to understand and rewire the brain.
Mental Health Resources
If you are struggling with your mental health, please reach out for help. Your employer might offer an Employee Assistance Program (EAP) or call one of many hotlines below.
SAMHSA’s National Helpline – 1-800-662-HELP (4357)
SAMHSA’s National Helpline is a free, confidential, 24/7, 365-day-a-year treatment referral and information service (in English and Spanish) for individuals and families facing mental and/or substance use disorders.
National Suicide Prevention Lifeline, 1-800-273-TALK (8255) or text HOME to 741-741.
If you or someone you know is suicidal or in emotional distress, contact the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline. Trained crisis workers are available to talk 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. Your confidential and toll-free call goes to the nearest crisis center in the Lifeline national network. These centers provide crisis counseling and mental health referrals.
Top HelpLine Resources