Coping with not being okay: meet my pandemic baby

When faced with difficult and tragic situations, we all tend to search for ways to cope. The reality of things is that our coping mechanisms vary from one person to another. This has been my way of coping…

Tired, angry, burnt out…

All are words that describe how we’ve been feeling and what we’ve been going through. Alive has been my only right way of answering “How are you?” and “how have you been?” That being said, I had to do something about it.

I realized that it’s perfectly okay not to be okay!

I chose to accept that, and I made the decision to take out my frustration on paper – my paper being an electronic one – and used it as my way of coping with our reality.

This is how my “pandemic baby” was born…

Dawn of words: a fancy sounding name, yet, once you actually read the blog posts I’ve written, you’d realize that it’s a pretty simple blog that aims to be a safe place for people who are looking for a safe haven.

How you may ask? By accepting that every feeling is valid. By saying things as they are and being unfiltered. And by possibly using my words to describe how you, amongst others, have been feeling and what you’ve been thinking of.

One of the most emotional posts I’ve written was after an event that we all felt deeply. It was the Beirut port explosion that left many of us struggling. Some took it to the streets and helped with the cleaning and restorations. I personally found no way to feel, other than to write a post about it.

The responses I’ve gotten post after post kept me going. People saw me as relatable and real. And isn’t that what writing is supposed to be?

Not everyone has an eye for writing. But there must be something that helps you to keep moving.

Sharing is caring

At least that’s what they say. I’ve shared with you my therapy. So come on, share with us how you’ve been coping. Perhaps your way might help others who are struggling as well and don’t know how to react!

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72 réflexions au sujet de « Coping with not being okay: meet my pandemic baby »

  1. Totally agree!! Thank you for sharing your beautiful words with us . Personally when I feel down I love listening to music, it makes me feel alive and of course spending time with my family helps me a lot.

    1. I saw this one day and I immediately related : « Music is a world within itself, with a language we all understand ». There is always something special with music. It has been a common coping mechanism.
      Thank you Luna for reading and sharing!

  2. I like the idea
    Especially now! very clever
    This is like the fruit of our 2 years of staying at home
    I totally agree about the fact that everyone has a unique method of facing problems especially during these hard times!
    it’s true it’s okay not to be okay!

  3. You’re absolutely right! Each and everyone of us is experiencing tough times, sobre todo en esas situaciones tan dificiles, so it is OKAY NOT to be okay. I personally find my comfort in writing down my thoughts, listening to motivational speakers and doing yoga. Yet, accepting the fact that This Too Shall Pass makes it easier for me, I mean, to cope with not being okay.

    1. We have something in common then! (writing)
      Would you like to share with us the names of motivational speakers you have found to be helpful? Making it can help us too!

      1. Sure. These, and Elon Musk, are the best:
        – Oprah Winfrey
        – Bear Grylls
        – Nick Vujicic
        – Steve Harvey
        – Tony Robbins
        – Simon Sinek

  4. Wonderful article!! This article is a must read for everyone going through tough times!! I feel much better after reading your article Sami!!

    1. I am happy to hear that Charbel! This makes writing blog posts worthwhile. Thank you for your comment and for taking the time to read the post!

  5. Thank you Sami for sharing with us your thoughts! I totally agree with what you said and I believe that there’s nothing wrong with not being okay during and after the pandemic. Music and talking to my friends everyday online were my ways to forget a little bit what I went through during those horrible times.

    1. Music has been a vey common « healer »!
      Having friends is also a very important thing. And despite the fact that we were apart for the most part, technology allowed us to stay in contact with our loved ones – friends and families. So thankfully we had that! Hopefully these bad days will end soon. Thank you Batoul for sharing your thoughts!

  6. Thank you Sami-Joe for being what you are and for uncovering out loud the bare truth about feelings, emotions and toughts we sadly care to suppress!

        1. I am happy to hear that! This is what I aim for in my writings. Thank you for taking the time to read and for commenting!

  7. Je crois que c’est totalement normale de ne pas se sentir bien après une pandemie qui dure depuis des années. En étant une Italo-Libanaise vivante au Liban, je comprends bien que pour les libanais il soit difficile de réagir, à cause de la situation economique aussi. Il y a une chose que je ne comprends pas trop pourtant… pourquoi quand on l’on demande à mes ami.e.s libanais.e.s si « ça va » ils se sentent obligées de repondre « OUI, ça va ». Non, vous avez le droit de parler des vos problèmes et des difficultés, des angoisses et de la peur du future.

    Merci Sami pour cet article qui dévoile un peu commence se sent la majorité des jeunes libanais.

    1. Tu as complètement raison surtout en ce qui concerne le fait de dire tout va bien alors qu’en réalité ça ne va pas du tout ! J’ai essayé de répondre avec “ça ne va pas” et la plupart des fois les réponses que je recevais n’étaient pas très encourageantes. Puis je me suis rendue compte que je ne peux pas être toujours « okay » et j’ai le droit de le dire! Merci Natalie d’avoir pris le temps de lire mon billet et d’avoir partagé tes pensées aussi!

  8. A wonderful thing to share your feelings about how we are allowed to feel. Yet thank you for your very decent blog that i have followed since day one.

    You’re a talented writer and can’t wait to see more

    You go girl ✌️

  9. Sadly, the world taught us that the only feeling we can feel is anger, angry men hit, angry women break, because the world thinks this is the only feeling valid. Sadness is dramatic, happiness is foolish and fear is cowardly. So we learned to hide it all with anger, instead of feeling every feeling by its own, every emotion. Thanks for sharing Sami, it is time to celebrate feelings unmasked!

    1. « Time to celebrate feelings unmasked. »
      Wonderfully said! It really is time to allow ourselves to feel everything instead of holding things in. This requires a lot of work, one that we as a society should put in. Hopefully we can spread the message of « feel free to feel » even more! Thank you for your input Fatima!

  10. I love what you wrote, it’s so relatable. I don’t really know how I am coping because I feel like we reached a level of numbness we never reached before due to what we’ve been through in the past 3 years.

    1. I totally agree. This feeling of numbness has also affected me, and my personal blog. This is one of the reasons I felt unable to write for a while. But hey, perhaps this could be an idea for my next blog post!

  11. Thank you for sharing your baby with us!
    Personally, spending time with my family and our pandemic baby (our dog) helped me get through these 2- 3 years. I wouldn’t have made it without them.

    1. Animals can be a huge support system when having bad days! Personally I don’t own a dog, but I’m sure he would’ve been a great companion! Thank you for telling us about your pandemic baby.

  12. By surrounding myself with a close entourage containing my dearest friends and family, was my way of coping with everything. This helped me feel a lot more joyful and hopeful in a world where such valuable resources are silently becoming more and more scarce. Not a lot of people have the opportunity to be in an environment of caring hearts. Adding to that, a lot of physical exercise (running worked for me) that helped me cope with every strain faced during each day. That’s also a luxury that not everyone can possess, and I’m grateful for it.

    1. It’s so true. Appreciating the caring environment that surrounds us is something we sometimes forget to do. We shouldn’t take what we have for granted. And although running is not my cup of tea, I can imagine how liberating running (or exercising) might be. Thank you for sharing your thoughts!

  13. Thank you for sharing your thoughts and feelings with us! What makes me not go crazy during these times is the sense of community that comes along with us all going through the same hardships. By keeping in mind that we’re not alone and by helping each other out, we will surely get through this with the least amount of emotional damage <3

    1. Thank YOU for taking the time to read and comment!
      High School Musical said it best: « We’re all in this together ». And the only way out of it is by standing together and helping each other. If we show up for one another, we can get through so much!

  14. It is true, we all go through difficult moments.
    Personally I went through this recently, but I think that this is life. We have to live the happy days and sad days, and the support of our beloved ones will helps us to keep up.

    1. You are right! We cannot be selective as to which days we live through and which days we don’t. We have to make it somehow. And having a support system – friends, family members, significant others – definitely keeps us going. I hope your days are going better, and if not well then stay strong! I am sure you can do it!

  15. It really is okay not to be okay. But when I feel anxious and down, I share my feelings and thoughts with my mom. She’s a really good listener and helps me to get through whatever is happening

    1. Moms are the best! I am glad to hear that you have a shoulder to lean on and someone who has your back. Thank you Ghia for sharing!

  16. This is a very simple blog post yet an eye opener!
    I mean we’ve a been there and specifically ever since the 17th of October.
    We tend to burry ourselves in work to ignore our emotions and how we’re really feeling when in fact it’s more than okay not to feel okay and to embrace this feeling.

    1. So true. Ignoring our feelings for so long could end up backfiring. Which is why we should feel them. We can both be positive and not feel okay at the same time. It shouldn’t be one or the other! The important thing is to know that not being okay is only temporary and good things will come, that is for sure!

  17. May I say, that was a delightful read!
    Now, onto your question: I tend to deal with feeling down in a few ways, but one that stands out for me is as simple as listening to music. It’s always a positive experience, being serenaded with the music you love! I sometimes enjoy my music with my cat, too, if she’s feeling playful.
    Life is an open road, sometimes you’re driving smoothly and hit a couple odd potholes, sometimes you’re on that one road you hate that feels like it’s popping your tires. But at the end, it’s a road, and it’s one that’ll lead to your destination if you keep on pushing through.

    1. Music is really the remedy for our souls. Music can be magical in times of hardship.
      You’re absolutely right. We need to keep going otherwise we won’t be able to see what’s at the end of our journey. I hope your roads always lead to beautiful destinations, no matter the bumps you may encounter!

  18. We can’t ignore the fact that life is full of ups and downs. It’s very normal to have bad days and not feel okay all the time. Recognizing that these emotions are part of the human experience and accepting them will help us lift a weight off our shoulders. All we have to do is always be patient, do what we have to do and enjoy the little things because the best is yet to come! It’s okay not to be okay… because after all we are so much more than the emotions we feel and experience!!

    1. We all have « ups and downs » moments. The way I deal with it is I take time and think about what happened, I look at it from different points of views and try to learn from what happened, find out a way to try and fix those down moments with myself because the fact is that it’s okay not to be okay

      1. Looking at things from different perspectives is really something important. It’s like saying: yes, it’s raining but after the rain comes the rainbow.
        We should live each moment, be sad but make sure we don’t stay sad, because rain isn’t going to last forever! Thank you for sharing!

  19. Very relatable and very reassuring! I’m sure a lot of people in Lebanon today need to hear that it’s okay to struggle and it’s okay to feel your negative feelings.

    1. Definitely! We should never feel bad for feeling.
      All our emotions are valid and we should say that more often. Feel free to feel!

  20. Sometimes it’s so easy to forget that it’s okay not to be okay! I cope by doing things that give me peace, like reading. It’s great for escapism!

    1. Wow Kinda, reading is such a gem; rare to find these days!
      Do you prefer reading paper books and hard copies? Or are you more of an e-book reader? It would be interesting to know your take on this subject!

  21. So relatable!
    Your flow of words led me to the end of the post yearning for more!

    My way of coping is accepting not feeling okay all the time and always reminding myself of all the good things I’m grateful for. Reaching out for help whether it is professional or from a friend/relative also provides a huge relief!

    1. Thank you for your kind words. I am happy that you enjoyed reading my post!

      You are absolutely right! Having a support system to help us through everything is extremely important. And reaching out for help is never a sign of weakness, but rather a sign of strength!

  22. What makes things survivable for me is spending hours on my piano just letting my emotions flow, or taking a short walk in nature. There’s just something about being alone surrounded by nothing but trees, it makes you feel safe and peaceful.

    1. I couldn’t relate more. Nature has been a dear friend of mine. It’s the only place that can make you feel at ease. There is nothing more peaceful than feeling that calming breeze all around you.

  23. What makes me feel alive and okay after a tough time is listening to music and taking pictures of sunsets. I find there is something calming about nature that allows me to feel at peace.

    1. I find sunsets to be calming as well. You’re right, there is something magical about nature and especially sunsets. It’s like they’re telling you that even endings can be beautiful, and it’s only paving the way for a new, beautiful beginning. Thank you for sharing!

  24. Great read!
    Loved how you wrote your thoughts in such a simple but expressive way. It felt relatable from start to finish.
    As for me I cope when I am with someone whom I can talk to, basically a shoulder to cry on.

    1. Having a shoulder to cry on is indeed an important factor in getting through difficult times. Thank you for reading my post!

    2. At first, i just want to tell you how proud I am of you.
      I really relate to what you’re saying.
      Every human needs some kind of support, keeping it to oneself never helped and it will never help. Life is hard we shouldn’t make it harder on ourselves. Music always was and will always be my companion in the darkest of days and in the happiest of days.
      Thank you for sharing and I’m super proud of you.

      1. Your words mean a lot to me, really. Thank YOU for taking the time to read my post.
        I can say the same about music, it has been with me through thick and thin! It’s a loyal companion!

  25. “Alive has been my only right way of answering”… Cette phrase résonne énormément et pas que pour moi… Personnellement, ce qui me permet de me sentir mieux c’est de m’occuper le plus possible et de toujours avoir quelque chose à faire pour ne pas penser au négatif.

    1. Les moments difficiles ne sont pas évidents à vivre. Mais il faut apprendre comment les gérer, traverser et surmonter. Et surtout, il faut croire qu’on peut les éviter en faisant une activité qu’on aime! Merci Sabine d’avoir partagé avec nous ton expérience!

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