Green is the official color of Mental Health Awareness Month. Today I chose to wear green. It isn’t always my first choice but I picked it to wear special for you. 

Who are you? You are a human in a world that doesn’t always understand the pain in your heart and the thoughts in your mind.

You are someone who hurts, struggles, and feels afraid. In a world of billions of people you somehow just still feel alone.

You are someone who can’t or won’t let love in, or worse, feels like you aren’t even deserving of it. Maybe you are sick, now at this moment chronically. Maybe you are beaten down emotionally. Maybe this life has reached its maximum capacity for scars, tears, and loss. Your soul can’t take another hit and you can’t quiet the constant, terrifying, and dangerous thoughts in your brain.

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You feel like you are no good, wouldn’t be missed, and would be quick to get over. The literal weight of the world has been weighing so heavy and you can’t bear the load any longer.

You have reached the breaking point or are teetering dangerously close to it. 

If that’s you, it’s OK. 

No, really. 

You, fantastically original and irreplaceable you—you are entitled to own all that pain, fear, and despair. It 100 percent belongs to you. You are human and we have the luxury (even though it feels like a curse) to express, embrace, and entertain all of it.

Here’s the catch.

Express it. 

Exercise it.

Explain it.

Empathize with it. 

Embrace it. 

Eat it!

But please (and that it is such a small word for how large of a request it is), PLEASE never give in to to the belief that this world doesn’t need or want you. 

In those dark, lonely moments it can really feel that is true in every fiber of your being. I know in those moments all you are looking for is relief. Believe me, I know. The thought of a single solitary moment released from the pain, it’s so tempting. It seems almost unfair to prolong yourself from such a state. Why wouldn’t you want to be free?

I’ll tell you why. 

The world needs you. I need you. 

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That may seem selfish on my part, that I’d ask for you to endure such agony day after day, and you’d be right. The reason I am is that I know you occupy a space in this world no one else can fill. Absolutely no one!

You are wanted despite the despair, depression, diagnosis, or disease.

You are wanted despite your funk, slump, rough patch of whatever other phrase people use to make it all not seem so bad even though it’s horrendous. 

You are wanted because even though you can’t see the light at the end of the tunnel, you ARE the light for someone else. You could be my light! 

Just give someone a chance to be by your side, to cry with you, to see a doctor, to find help, to sit on a couch and watch reruns of Friends in sweatpants for days. Let someone show up for you, hug you, and love you. You matter and you deserve it . . . all of it and so much more. You deserve to feel special because in a million different incredible ways, you are. There is and never will be anyone else like you. 

And the you who you are today? It doesn’t mean this will always be the version of yourself you’ll always be. You will grow, learn, change, flex, and adapt. You might not have the skills or space or help you need right now to get to that next version of you, but the potential is there. It’s OK to not like you right now because I still like you. 

It’s important you know that and not just because of what this month is, but because you should hear it every day. 

You matter more than you will know. 

Nickey J Dunn

I'm a full-time wife, mom of three, employee, OCD Irish Aries. I'm originally from the Pacific Northwest, now living in Phoenix. I'm passionate about my family, writing, and writing about my family. Mental health, anti-bullying, and body-positive advocate.