NO! I AM NOT Okay! – The Experts View


No – I Am Not Okay 

Where did I go wrong?

Moments of reflective wonder haunt me,

Shadowy questions that resonate disturbing answers

Freedom to create – can it become crushing oppression?

Listening to advice- does it begin to limit my growth?

Why are the dichotomy of positive values,

scribbling unshapen ideas across my life’s horizon,

in neon shades for all to, see?

Pensive thoughts plod through the backdrop of my mind-

Can I draw fences between me and the world?

Will the fences keep me in safe? what will it keep out?

Do I need to chain my teacher’s spirit to the fence,

So that my entrepreneur image can swiftly fly to the stars,

Without plunging like Icarus into an ocean of anxious grief!

No, I am not OK with these swirling questions

that storm through my mind:

Do I need to accept it all at my table?

The subtle manipulation masked as friendly sharing of ideas;

The criticism, poorly dressed as chatty feedback;

All looking dark and demeaning,

falsely sympathetic at my vulnerability

No, I am not OK, with the tick tack of stilettos,

Of coiffured heads laughing as they climb

The staircase, I have carefully crafted,

All the way to their success!

I am not OK with overfed egos in pinstripe suits

Dragging me down to the dense unclear universe….

I will brook no chalk cliffs and rolling waves of doubt and negativity

as I sail along scouring the sea for adventure;

I am ready with granite decisions- strong and bold

That will move mountains;

I will fly free!

But callous toxicity, I am not okay with!

Take it somewhere else!

Leave my unsaid tears, my well-being, so precious

– leave it all alone, let it remain untouched by contaminated souls!

Meena Mishra

Sunita Nair

A daughter, wife, mother, doctor mixed with a dash of gardening, travelling and writing, to spice up the cocktail that is me. A strong believer in the idea of a seamless world. A world that transcends all where the only religion is humanity, and the language is full of love and kindness.

Ms.Sunitha Nair

The opportunity to be part of this endeavour of promoting awareness about mental health by Impish Lass Publishing house under the auspice’s editorial of the eminent educator Meena Mishra is indeed a huge honour. It is one thing to be able to read about the various aspects of mental health described by all the lovely authors contributing to the anthology ‘No I am Not Ok’, but equally important is to also understand the process, the journey that led the authors to share their thoughts towards this editorial. Personally, I consider it a double privilege to be able to compile some of the thought processes behind the scenes of the expert authors

Starting with my own journey on this train called ‘No I am Not Ok’ – I believe it takes monumental courage to be able to say that in the open. In a society where strength is equated to suffering in silence, resilience is understood as putting up with most things, we have, over generations lived with the doctrine that tears are only for the weak. Being part of this important anthology gave me a platform to share my personal experience with a wider audience. It is the small things that matter. In a world where there is humungous pressure on a particular version of success, it is probably time to rethink strategies for how we would like our future societies to evolve. Sharing my personal experience, I was able to share all those little things that could potentially be so detrimental to a vulnerable individual. A tiny shift in individual attitude can bring about a paradigm shift within the community. Hence collective efforts such as this wherein an abundance of issues are discussed are just a beginning. Let us all be healthy – inside out.

Dr Shirley Verghese

Looking into the mirror and at yourself needs some courage and honesty.
Most of us just look at our external appearance as we would want to appear to others. 
But if we stared into ourselves, we would know how comfortable or not we are with ourselves.
For writing my stories for this anthology I slipped under the skin of my protagonists and gave a hard look at the aching heart within and how they dealt with it. It was a cathartic experience and I tried to bring out their deep reflections about themselves.

Dr Supriya Bansal

MD, PDCC, Radiology

Though more common than we realize, teenagers’ and adolescents’ depression are never discussed in the mainstream. As a doctor and a fellow mother, I have seen many parents downplaying their children’s emotional and social issues and brushing them aside as peer pressure, academic expectations, and hormonal changes.

Dr.Supriya Bansal

It is paramount for parents to recognize that a depressed teenager cannot do away with the illness with self-restraint, discipline, or rap on the knuckles. As responsible, compassionate adults, we are responsible for guiding and supporting our teens.

I wanted to raise awareness about teenagers stuck in a quagmire of depression with this poem. I hope it resonates with the parents and caregivers and makes them mindful of their kid’s mental turmoil.

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