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I woke up this morning a bit dazed. As I pour vanilla creamer into a steaming mug I mentally note my no-sugar diet will have to start tomorrow. And now in front of my computer, I blankly stare at the 39 unread emails feeling utterly exhausted even though my bed was just made.

In a last ditch effort to relocate my motivation, I unroll my mat and prepare to yoga the daze away. It’s been too long since my last down dog. As the blood rushes to my head I am reminded of my homemade cocktail from the night before, red wine with a pinch of Benadryl on the side. Instead of flowing through my practice, I choose to rest in child’s pose wishing I had a painkiller to ease my throbbing head. Surrendering to dizzy thoughts, the self-loathing sets in. How did you get here? Why can’t you get back on track? What is wrong with you?

Reading this, now is when my husband will shake his head wondering why on earth I am admitting this to the greater public. My Mom will be worried beyond belief, calling to ensure I am okay and asking me to seek help. My co-workers have already voiced concerns that I seem different lately and my friends are wondering where I’ve been for months.

Let me clarify - I am okay. I’m not writing this for sympathy or worry, I writing this because it’s the truth. And, I’m willing to bet you’ve known some version of this truth once before. After all, we are human. But, somewhere down the line we stopped admitting our faults, we ran from our darker sides and we hide behind walls that scrape the sky. We over-medicate and under-solve. We glorify busy because it leaves no time for reflection. We answer every “how are you?” with an “I’m good” like it’s our favorite song someone else wrote.

I’m calling our bluff.

From work to love, from mind to body, I’m off kilter. I’ve let too many good things go, fixing others before myself. I’ve forgotten the little things that matter, worrying too much about the big things that don’t. I’ve strayed off the path and can’t seem to find the breadcrumbs back home. We have a tendency to want to skip the struggles, bypass the hiccups as if the struggle is not part of the evolution. Fighting to survive, literally speaking, is the definition of evolving. Our growth is stimulated by challenges, not by ease.

It’s in these moments I am reminded that we must go within to do the dirty work. We must be willing to find our reflection no matter how dark it gets. And, when it feels like you’re sinking, take a deep breath and dive in again. To be human is to experience all realms of it, to feel every feeling with objectivity. I’m not going to mask my humanness for the comfort of others or for the conformity it brings.

Sometimes the greatest lessons transpire from the moments we feel the most emotion. What a shame it would be if we hid those times in secret, instead of sharing them with the world.

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