Two weeks ago marked the start of an emotional roller coaster. And I’m not just talking about for me. I had a few friends going through some really tough times. As in, one was taken hostage by a gunman. She was one among many at the Trader Joe’s in Los Angeles. That’s a though time. Just after that my home city of Redding, California began to burn and the flames, damage, and deaths just increased as the days rolled ahead.
It was also a big week energetically. All the astrology reports warned that the stars were aligning for a big power up, an upgrade, if you will. I’m in a group for intuitive women and many were talking about being down for the count. Instances of insomnia, emotional outbursts, and run-in’s with strangers, friends, and even family members.
Sometimes you know the “reasons” for upset and sometimes you don’t.
I myself was on shaky ground. I’d had a few emotional upheavals and being intuitive, sometimes my body knows stuff before my mind. One thing I did was to make outreach calls to friends and tell family members I felt like I was sinking.
29 years ago I reached out to a roommate because I couldn’t do it the way I was doing it. The way involved a lot of whiskey. She took me to a group that helped me. And that group would teach me the one essential life skill that kept me alive and in recovery, asking for and accepting help.
Last week I called several friends, also spoke to close family members, and contacted a relative who’s also a close friend and basically lost it. I cried, I got angry, I told them some wild thoughts I’d had. Sometimes I feel awful because something painful is going on and I do not want to feel. Sometimes I get whacky because something good is coming.
That night I went to an awards show and won an Emmy….yep, a Los Angeles News Emmy, all shiny and pretty. Our investigative team won and our TV station news crew won Emmy's as well. And boy was that exciting and fun.
The next day the phone rings and one relative is shouting joyfully about the exciting win! Then in a moment of pure sweetness my cousin says, by the way, “I love it that you’re ok with not being OK.”
Well, that sent me reeling. It was the wildest, most heart felt unexpected compliment! It was more shiny than the Emmy! One thing that I've truly come to appreciate is that my family, especially my husband and kids, can gently hold a space for my tears. And there were a few of them that week.
Last week I witnessed a high school friend relay her anguish on a social media post recounting the one year anniversary of her husband’s death. Her husband used to jokingly call Facebook “Fake Book”. But her emotional posts were anything but. She asked for online and in person support to get through the date. And she got it!!!
It’s so easy to post social media posts about the good stuff. And I grant you, people out there can over do posting about being needy. Personally I think the best outreach is in-person. It’s intimate and authentic. But I also think there's absolutely a time and place to go public when you need support.
I’m not sure as a society, we’re talking out loud enough, about asking for help. Are we?
We’ve had a rash of celebrity suicides and some big names overdosing. Granted sometimes celebrities get isolated. But what if they are just playing out a universal truth under the big lights? Maybe they’ve isolated themselves without authentic companionship and genuine life lines? A mentor says to me, "Awareness is the beginning of change." If we won't allow ourselves to be honest and aware of our truth, how can we find a way through our feelings or circumstances? If you are struggling, having feelings that feel overwhelming, depressed, are sad, or mad, I hope you can reach out for help.
There are so many forms of help… friendship, prayer, pets, connection. If it's online, it's online. But don't miss the chance to be a friend in need, because those friends are friends indeed. The whole model of recovery is built on the notion that when we get honest about our situation, ask for help we connect and heal. Later we pay it forward with service.
The Emmy award statue depicts a winged muse holding an atom. It's supposed to be an image of creativity meeting up with science to produce good TV. It was originally named after a TV engineer. After all that's happened the past two weeks, I'm thinking it might just be an angel catching our upset.
This may be just the right time to be ok with not being ok.