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How are you really.

20 May, 2021

There’s this one phrase that I love to say no matter what,
(I think a lot of people would be able to relate to this)
and that phrase is, “It’s okay; I’m okay."

Growing up I was a real cry baby.
If you know me you won’t probably believe it.
I used to cry all the time; especially when I didn’t get the things I want or when things didn’t go my way.

Some years later, starting from my high school time, because of one thing and another;
I went into a survival mode and for me to survive means to not show any sign of weakness;
to not create any openings to anything that might break me or hurt me,
including my own thoughts and feelings.

I shut everything out, I turned everything off.
I toughened up myself, I stopped crying;
I started dismissing feelings.

Whenever I found myself in a dark place,
I would just wait till it passed,
I would just pretend that it was not there therefore it couldn’t hurt me.
I would just suck it up and be okay with it, whatever it was.

I “survived” in that mode for a very very long time,
thinking that it was what it means to be strong,
that it was how I can protect those I care and love.

Honestly, I still do and still am in my so called survival mode.

So maybe now you’re wondering why am I writing this blog post then?

I remember back in University, my Christian ethics teacher, whenever he bumped into me in the hallway he would ask, “Hi Aiai how are you?” and I would always answer “I’m fine” till one point he suddenly said “You always appear to be fine Aiai.” I remember when he said that I wasn’t actually fine and I really really wished that he had forced me to say something more, something real.

Survival mode was my only mode for the longest time.
Throughout my life, as I grieve the loss of things and people,
I would always say "I'm okay".

Although deep down all my insides are screaming “No, you’re not.”

Even on the days after I lost my dad,
when people came to me and ask me, “How are you?”;

I said “I’m okay.”
While actually I was not, I was angry, I was sad,
I was everything else but okay, I still am.

But I didn’t know how to grieve and
what to do with all these feelings
that I could no longer truly dismiss,

there’s a lump in my throat that won’t go away,
there were times when it’s hard to breathe.

Oh how much I wish during those time that
someone could just see through my smile

and tell me that it’s okay to feel, to tell me that
they know that I am not okay even when I say I am.

I just need someone to tell me that
its okay to breakdown, it’s okay to cry it out,
to scream it out once in a while;

for some to ask me “How are you really?”

So this is the reason why I wrote this; let me ask you something.
“How are you? Are you okay?"
and if you say you are, then let me ask you again
“How are you, really?”

Your feelings are important and they matter.
They don’t have to make sense to anyone but you.

I know at times you don’t want to express them nor show them to those around you
because you are scared that you are too much for them.
That they’ll leave you for being too handful,
for being too difficult,
for being too you.

First of all, those who really love you won’t leave you for being you.

Second of all, even if there’s no good people around you and they all leave you,
remember that there is one that is greater than all who will never leave you.
He won’t ever shy away from your tears,
instead He will comfort you and even more He collects all your tears.

Psalm 56:8
You keep track of all my sorrows.[a]
You have collected all my tears in your bottle.
You have recorded each one in your book.

You are never truly alone, ever.

Third and the last of all,
If you’re reading this I want you to know that
I am here and I will be ready to ask you,

“How are you really? It’s okay, It’s time to let it out.”

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