It’s Okay to be NOT Okay….


For someone who builds others up, understanding that it’s okay to be down can be a challenge.


It’s all good! Stay positive! Half glass full!

a lemon slice with straws stuck in it, with little lemon wedges in the backgroundAll of the above are phrases I tell myself often, especially when times are tough or when I hit a roadblock in life.  I’m generally a very positive person who can easily roll with the punches and make lemonade out of the sourest of lemons. When the world turned upside down earlier this year, over time, my daily mantras started to fade.  Initially, I tried to see quarantine as an opportunity— difficult without a doubt, but an opportunity to focus on the positive.  We would have more time at home with family, no more rushing around from place to place, we could organize and deep clean the house (haha – how optimistic of me!) and focus on slowing our lives down.  As we all know, the weeks gradually turned to months, and my optimism started to fade. I didn’t feel like myself, like my light from within was slowly dimming.  Fitness and helping others live a healthy life are my absolute passions, and I could no longer train clients in person, doing what I love.

My husband was still going to work full time at the office, but my son’s preschool closed down, so I was trying to keep him entertained without anywhere to go and not seeing any family or friends. As time went on, I was falling apart. My little guy missed his preschool friends, we all missed our families and interaction with the outside world, and we desperately wanted our former crazy, busy, hectic lives back. Being an only child, my little guy grew tired of only seeing mommy every day, and although I completely understood why it broke my heart that I wasn’t enough, and I couldn’t help him understand. After daily occurrences of him throwing fits over the smallest of situations, completely unlike him, I hit a breaking point, and the overwhelm hit me like a ton of bricks. I felt utterly helpless, and all I could think to do was cry. I called my husband at work and broke down, unsure of what to do and how to move forward. My positive, sunny, happy outlook on life was broken, and I didn’t feel like myself, nor did I know how to get her back.

a mom calming her crying son, teaching him that it's okay to be not okay

My husband, being the amazing man he is, assured me that it is OKAY to be not okay. For the first time, I accepted that and allowed myself to feel all the negative, sad, angry, disappointed, uncertain feelings that I had pushed deep down for so long to stay positive for my family. After I let it all sink in, I just allowed myself to sit in those feelings. It was okay to not be happy.  It was okay to not be positive.  It was okay to be NOT okay. Soon after, I felt a sense of release with a fresh perspective on how we could best move forward. We worked together as a family to come up with a plan moving forward and scheduled some time away on our property just to relax and escape what was going on in the world.

Do you know what happened? Being okay with not being okay allowed me to be at peace with how I really felt rather than pushing forward and suppressing.  I could finally take a deep breath, relax, and recharge. So for anyone like me who likes to be on the go constantly, always finds the best in every situation and has the see the world through rosy colored glasses mentality, just let it all go. I know that parents, especially us moms, try so hard to make life happy and perfect for our kiddos, but the reality is that sometimes it just isn’t, and that’s okay.  Allow yourself to truly accept how you feel and don’t push it away because you are trying to be strong for everyone else. We need to let go and sometimes break to move forward. Letting go put me in a fresh perspective to start over and regroup. Life still isn’t easy or back to normal, but I can tell you that I’ve found the silver lining in our new normal. I hope you can, too.

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Courtney and her husband Matt were born and raised in St. Louis. Courtney stays home with their little boy, Noah and is a certified run coach and trainer. She found her passion in health and fitness through her own journey to better health, losing 50 pounds with good old fashioned diet and exercise. She has ten years of experience coaching run groups with Fleet Feet, Fit4Mom and she now coaches her own local Run Club here in St. Louis. A former 'couch potato’ to marathoner, she even ran a half marathon during each trimester of her pregnancy. Besides running, she loves early morning workouts at Burn Bootcamp, traveling, running around town in her workout clothes and baseball cap, spending time with her family and relaxing with a glass of wine! She’s all about having fun, laughing, spreading positivity, meeting new people and motivating others to live their happiest, healthiest life. She is thrilled to be a part of the STL Moms Blog team and can’t wait to share her health and fitness tips with you!