Back to Action

Well I survived my first day of the summer semester. It went without a hitch. I didn’t feel like jumping out of my skin. I was able to get my books without any problems and it turns out my meeting with the EIT is scheduled for tomorrow. I was right. The lady had to call and confirm the appointment time and meeting location. So it would’ve made no difference if I made it back early yesterday or not. I continued to feel a sliver of unease after the whole registration process. I almost expected that the teachers weren’t going to call my name during roll call. In my mind that would’ve meant that there was a problem and I would’ve been in bigger trouble.

The only thing that sucked is my worst fears were confirmed today. I’ve been put on academic probation. I saw it coming, but that doesn’t make it suck any less. So I have to deal with that added challenge in my way. But I stand by what I said before. I’m coming back from everything that’s ever gone wrong. I don’t have the time to feel sorry for myself anymore. I have to keep going forward and give it everything that I got. I can’t play the victim to anything anymore. I feel like the victim mentality has cost me so much. Plus I can’t do this using my usual methods.

If I’m to imagine this whole personal journey of mine as one series of battles after another then I can’t just fight harder. I have to fight smarter. If I start thinking of course repeats, probation, or anything else as some sort of defeat then it will make things seem impossible to overcome which would just bury me under another giant mountain of trouble.

I like to think that I’m on the right track. I’m getting out of the Cottages of Boone, a place where I’ve never been happy living, for a new house that might be a thousand times better. I opted to continue with my education when I could have easily given up on everything. My pulse is still beating even though I wanted to die. There are other challenges that I have to deal with. But I’m not gonna let myself back down from any of it.

This is all just another challenge that I have to endure, one more thing to conquer. It’s going to be worth it when I graduate next spring. It’s going to happen.

It hurts knowing that my Mom feels like I’m not doing enough with my life. She says she supports me and believes in me, but I feel like she’s trying to make everything that had happened in the past was nothing or that the goals I’m trying to reach aren’t good enough in her eyes. That almost sounds like I’m trying to play victim again. But it’s a hard truth that I have to face. I have to be ready and willing to accept things as they are, swallow my pride, and say that she’s right.

All right, that’s enough talk. I have to go consume 33 pages of knowledge by tomorrow morning and be ready for that meeting with EIT. There’s no other way to go from here except forward and up.

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New Mindset for the summer term 

This applies to everything that I will set myself out to do. Here I go!

Welcome Back Me….Yay.

So I get back to my little Hellhole. I put away the groceries after making space in the fridge and unpack all my things. I pay the electric bill. I pour myself a much needed cup of wine. (Really I’m using a coffee mug because no one uses glasses in this house. People are more likely to drink from straight out of the bottle.) I missed my meeting with the EIT because I didn’t back into town until it was too late. But in my defense that lady who called me said she was gonna call back and confirm the meeting today before anything was official. At least I think that’s what she said. The only thing that I cared about at the moment was having the hold lifted, re-register from my classes, and pay the damn tuition. Whatever the case, these people have been reasonable with me so far. I will call and meet up with them tomorrow and explain myself from there. I’m not going to bail out of anything anymore.

Oh yeah and remember how I said “Boy it’d be nice to have the place all to myself”? Yeah, no such luck. At least the kitchen was clean, the lights weren’t out, and the place didn’t reek of bong water and bullshit. So slip that in the plus column.

Meeting up with the EIT will mean that I’ll more than likely have to attend counseling. Fine by me, I was planning on it anyway after I spoke to my Mom about everything. Something that’s been on my mind lately. EIT doesn’t get the heads up unless a faculty/staff member contacts them. So the question is….

Who the FUCK ratted me out?

I can rule out my geology professor. That classroom was an auditorium anyway. How would he have kept track with everyone? Let alone pick me out from the crowd. Despite the F-Bomb in all caps I’m really not pissed off. I’m just genuinely curious. Would the EIT even tell me who it was if I asked? Would this bleeding heart be at the meeting?

My academic standing is most likely not all that great. But I can come back from it. I know I can come back from everything. This is not the first time I’ve been down this road and forced to claw my way back to the top. The year before applying and getting accepted I had to seriously hammer down with everything I had. I was put on academic probation at the time too. Right now I’m feeling and thinking similar thoughts to back then. That’s a good sign. That means I’m ready to go at things with everything that I got in me. The time away back home did me good despite my near meltdowns that I’ve blogged about.

Crossing the lines between Charlotte and Boone feels like jumping into different worlds. The difference between the two places is like night and day. The moment I felt my ears pop when coming up the mountain I felt this shift in energy. I’ve always felt it every time I travel back and forth. Every other time there was always this feeling of impending doom hanging over my head. I was always dreading something to deal with as soon as I got up the hill that lead to the Cottages. By the way, fuck that hill. I will so not miss when I leave for the new house. But there’s none of that going on now. There’s no crippling fear or doom and gloom. None of it. Another good sign? I like to think so.

I admit when I got the EIT letter my initial thought was like, “Goddamnit. Why couldn’t whoever-the-fuck just leave well enough alone?”

But before I was always complaining that everyone had some robotic insensitivity going on. About as robotic as the Daleks from Doctor Who. But if someone alerted the EIT about me, that proves that whatever crap I believed (quadrupled with depression/anxiety to support it) was all a lie after all. It means that someone actually took the time to notice that’s somethings up and showed genuine concern. So it proves one thing that I’ve said before. Mental illness lies to you.

Well I’m fully rested now. I know what it is I have to do and I’m willing to go through with it all. I know what I want and I’m ready to go after it. Anything that stands in my way will be shown no mercy.

The Cottages of Boone

I truly hope that when I get back to Boone that I will have the apartment all to myself. If I’m forced to ride out what’s left of my lease then I want to do so in peace. The last thing I want is to deal with anyone over there. I’ve already got my hands full with everything else going on. I don’t want to waste any time and energy on some Mickey Mouse bullshit that comes with roommates.

Since day one at the Cottages it’s been one thing after another. I don’t know if it’s just my place or the entire property. I swear though my place needs a blessing, a cleansing, an exorcism, SOMETHING. But then again there’s probably not enough sage and holy water in the world to help with that. I’ve seen and heard so much ratchetry it’s not even funny.

Of course the original plan was to move in with my ex-best friend Mike after my first semester was up. But then that didn’t happen. My living situation was shit, but the last thing that I needed at the time was to live with someone who I felt no longer cared about me. He had gotten so superficial. He sold out, big time.

When I first got there I was already introduced to my first roommate ever. His name was Val. The whole time I was living with him he was perpetually baked. He constantly reeked of drugs and all types of bullshit. And my parents had to see and smell him too. He rolled up and lit a joint in front of my Mom. Instantly he got put on my shit list. I hated his smell, I hated hearing him speak, I hated the mess he always left behind. I hated hearing him rap too. He was your typical white boy who was riding the coat tails of life on his rich doctor daddy’s money. I felt like the only time I could even breathe in that house was when he wasn’t around. There were times when I wanted nothing more but to take that tall glass bong, smash it across his head, then stab him in the neck with the jagged edges.

Then there’s Matt. I figured he was the typical jock. The day before classes started I went to sleep and I heard talking in the living room. He was there talking with friends. Then I heard something slam against my door. One of his friends had thrown something. They didn’t know that I was in my room, trying to sleep. So I let my presence be known and everyone was like, “Oh shit!! Sorry man!” There was Matt, accept he introduced himself as Aaron. Me, half asleep and visually impaired, bought into that. Matt was nice enough at first. But I didn’t really connect with him on a lot of things until after he had left. When he was living at the Cottages there was beef between him and Val that had been going on long before I ever came into the picture. There’s a lot to their story that I never quite understood. But we both hated Val, that was all I needed to know. Matt might have been a total jock, but at least he tried to be nice to me. We didn’t have that much in common, but at least he was up for cleaning. Albeit, sporadically. Which is more than I can say about anyone else at the time. Val walked out on his lease thanks to Matt. That was one of the few highlights of that semester.

Andre and Sarah. Sarah was nice enough. She at least had the common decency to say, “Hi. How are you doing?” or “Hey! What are you watching?” or “What are you cooking? It smells good!” The only thing I got to say is, what the fuck did she even see in a guy like Andre? I’ve taken shits that have more personality than that guy. Plus he wasn’t very bright. Everything was a mystery to this guy. I just bought a Wii U and he goes, “What’s that…?” I explained to him and then he says, “Is it a Playstation?” I bite my tongue and just say, “Sure…..” Even though I want to say, “What? Were your parents first cousins?” He was always going out and never helped around the house even though at one point he did all the cooking. He would always leave his cooked rice on the stovetop and let it get solid as a rock. He left a lot of other food out to rot too. I remember there was this lasagna in a glass pan that had been on the counter for the longest time. One day I was cleaning in the kitchen and I removed the aluminum covering it. It was pure nasty. It was crusty, moldy, and fuzzy all at the same time. So I threw it out. Of course I had to chisel that shit out of the pan first. Fucking ridiculous. How can someone be so lazy and forgetful to finish off food? I can’t forgive that.

Then there was Aaron. For a while he seemed like the only decent person there. He seemed normal. But that turned out to be a complete lie. During an incident that involved Matt and Val’s personal drama we were all in the kitchen until like 3:00 AM. Matt was really upset, I saw him crying, he ran up the stairs to go to his room. I was feeling for Matt at that moment and I told Aaron, “Oh man, he’s just racked with guilt right now.” And then Aaron said, “Good! I fucking hate that guy!” My issue with this is that I always saw Aaron go out with Matt and the others for drinks like they were the best of friends and then to hear him say that made me see how two-faced he really was. Aaron was the type of guy who acted nice to your face, but when you’re not around he talked mad shit. And if he did that with Matt than chances are he did that with everyone else too, myself included. Oh but he was still so popular with everyone. The only reason I imagine why is that he had some beer flavored cock that was ten inches long that everyone took turns to suck and ride on when he wasn’t pile driving a chick-of-the-week. Fast forward to Aaron’s last semester, he hooked up with a girl who was living next-door to us, Angie. Those two together….they had no volume control. At all. If Aaron wasn’t already the world’s most pathetic sex addict before he had solidified that status when Angie came into the picture. I could always hear them. They were always having the most obnoxiously loud rabbit sex at all hours of day and night. This bitch was loud no matter what. Whenever she spoke, laughed, cried, fucked, climaxed…get her a muzzle. It didn’t help that she always barged into the house like some spoiled little princess. I never glanced her or said more than two words to her. My instinct was to always look away from her and Aaron as if they were Gorgons or whatever. Her face is a blur in my mind and I’d prefer to keep it that way. Then when their relationship became volatile and toxic the whole house had to hear it. When they finally broke up I took it as a gift from the Universe at that time.

After Aaron came Brandon to take his old room. I liked Brandon. He was cool. He was the first person I could speak with openly in that house. We sat through One Piece and Black Butler together. He helped me a lot when it came to cleaning the kitchen. He was a drug user, but after everything I had seen up to that point, nothing surprised me anymore. It sucked coming back to the house to find out he subleased his room. Last time I saw him he was sporting some porn-stache and wearing some shirt that made him look like a drug lord off Miami Vice.

Trevor was all right. I didn’t like it when he and his friends were doing lines of coke in the house, but at least he was decent to me, gave me a ride to the grocery store when I needed it. He liked my cooking too. I let him have some. And we hated the same people living with us. He’s a marine with PTSD. There were nights when he acted up. Always pounding holes into the walls in his room. It was like having a cyclone ravaging through upstairs.

Jesus was…meh. He wasn’t rude to me or anything. But we just didn’t vibe. We both like anime, but our discussions were always brief. He was a decent cook too. When he moved in I was getting started on cooking. I was making stuff that he wasn’t, but even then our discussions were always brief. Some people have walls built up around them. With Jesus, however, there weren’t walls. No, he had an armed fortress. Getting close to this guy was like trying to push a cadillac up a steep hill….with a rope. I honestly could never get a good reading on that guy. I have no clue if he ever liked me in even the smallest bit. I still see him hanging around the Cottages and campus from time to time. But we don’t talk.

Then there was Javar and his free loading cousin Ky. These fuckers….They were always hovering over me when I was cooking, asking, “What’cha making? What’cha making? Can I have some?! Can I have some?!” You’d think these idiots had never seen anything that didn’t come from a fucking happy meal box. They were always inviting clusters of people to come into the house and throwing these stupid parties. Ky even brought his baby son on weekends to the place. Not to mention he treated his girlfriend like total shit. I had to hear them fight too. They were always making so much noise at the most random hours too. I bought noise canceling ear plugs to drown them out. Thankfully they worked. These two were the ones responsible for thefts going around in the neighborhood. I came back late from classes to find cops sweeping the place. Ky was arrested, Javar was evicted the very next day. It’s been deathly quiet ever since. No one’s come over to take that room since. Watch me score another dud to occupy the space though.

The guys I’ve got now are just so bland on every conceivable level. Now it’s just a bunch of little things that piss me off about them. Always hearing footsteps thundering up and down the stairs, the doors opening and closing every 8 seconds, the dishes piling up in the sink, but are never cleaned. And always being ignored without a second thought. As if they’re so busy. Doing what? Unless they’re all trying to research a cure for cancer or working to get Trump impeached from office I don’t see them doing anything productive with their time or their consumer driven lives.

The Cottages of Boone sold me some bullshit about how they’re so great at matching people up for comfortable living situations and have affordable units. They make it sound like such a nice place to live. It’s a prison. Anyone here watch Golden Girls? Remember Sophia Petrello? The Cottages of Boone are my Shady Pines. There’s always something going on at the Cottages. There’s drug deals all around, parties that get out of control, cops always patrolling the place, and does the management do anything? No, the management sucks. They’re about as useful as a windshield wiper is to a goat’s ass.

I gave this place almost three years of my life. You can’t say that I didn’t give it a shot. I had to endure living there while going through some of the darkest times of my life. I’ve had enough. I shouldn’t have to feel uncomfortable with anything or anyone in a place where I’m sleeping. I will be so happy when I say good-bye to it. My lease runs out in late July. I’m not gonna try to make the time I have there be positive, all sugar and rainbows. I just want to be able to sleep and cook in peace. Maybe actually get some studying and writing done while I’m there. I’ll make the most of it that I possibly can. Though I’m sure that place will fall completely to Hell without me to clean the kitchen or pay the electricity. When I move to the new house I don’t want to be there with the same cynicism, malice, or mistrust that I have for the Cottages. In the meantime, it is what it is. This is the hand that’s been dealt to me so now I have to play it.

Within my Minds Eye

A good friend of mine recently spoke to me about the Laws of Attraction. I do believe that thoughts become things and that the things we put out we attract to ourselves. I’m trying to go back to actively putting creative visualization back into my life which includes believing in the Laws of Attraction.

Remember I mentioned that at one point I was living a depression free life for close to two years? During that time I was deep into it. It was part of my Dreamcatcher Project. There weren’t any intense battles with inner demons going on at the time. Not that I remember anyway. But even if there were I wasn’t fighting anything like the Babadook, that’s for sure.

My friend was wondering if sharing dreams with others and talking about them somehow jinxed things. I answered, “No, not necessarily. I think it’s important to let your intentions be known. Not just to friends, but also to the Universe. I used to believe that so fervently. But I think I’m on my way back to it. When I realized to myself that I’m standing in my own way it made me realize that I never lost that part of myself. I never lost the better version of myself. I never lost my strength. I never “lost my powers”. It’s always been in me and I think I can feel it all coming back.

I especially felt this the other day during my little scare with the EIT and the registration hold placed on me. I’m not as nervous as I normally get before a new semester starts up. I think it’s a sign that I’m ready for whatever challenges are ahead.

Which is why I’m taking the moment to focus on what things I want to happen; dreams to realize and goals to accomplish, big or small. These are my immediate goals. Bigger, long term goals will be shared at a later time.

1. I’m going to meet up with the EIT and set things straight with them. Whatever resources they’ve got to offer me I will make use of it. Especially if it means that it will keep me out of the Cottages. Because the last thing I need is to spend anymore time in that Hellhole than I have to.
2. I’m going to pick myself back up from my failures and kick ass. The way things ended last semester was bad. It’s put me in a tight spot. I take responsibility for my own actions. I won’t place the blame on anyone or anything else, depression or no depression.
3. I’m going to go back to studying Japanese and continuing practicing Spanish. Learning and practicing different languages is always a good thing. I was registered to keep studying Japanese but due to the strict scheduling (oral lab included) I had no choice but to drop it. It hurt leaving it behind. I’m almost certain that dropping that class was an omen. I don’t want to forget what I learned in that class so I’m going to study it all on my own.
4. I’m going to keep learning how to cook. I’m going to get better at it. I’m going to master new recipes from the following Youtube channels; Cooking with Dog, Ochikeron, and Maangchi.
5. I’m getting that house. I’ve done everything that I’m supposed to do. The manager clearly knows how persistent I am. I’m getting along with the people who responded to my roommate ad and they’re on board with me.
6. I’m going to keep losing weight. I never want to put on depression weight again. Cooking helped me lose close to 40 pounds, but I’m going to do more. I want to get into shape.
7. I will engage in other interests that will allow me to enjoy myself outdoors.
8. I will sit and get to work on my novel whenever I’m not tied down with anything else. If I have to I’ll give up on video games and cancel streaming services if it means I’ll be able to get it all done.
9. I’m going to stick to my guns and keep fighting back against my depression. I won’t allow it to have any control over my life anymore than it already has. I will attend counseling at App State. If I have to exhaust all 10 free sessions and then go to a paid professional I will do it. I’m not going to fight alone anymore.
10. I’m going to go back to enjoy movies like I used to. There are so many great films that I’ve missed out on over the past three years.
11. I’m going back to enjoying anime like I used to. I’m not much a vintage nerd without it. It’s a big part of who I am. I don’t want to walk away from it. The same goes for all aspects of myself.
12. I will put myself out there more. I won’t hide from the world anymore. No matter how ugly it gets. I’m done being a lone wolf. I should be allowed to have friends and someone to love like anyone else.
13. I will laugh more than I have cried.
14. I will smile more than I have frowned.
15. I will celebrate more than I have despaired.
16. I will continue to live. I still have unfinished business. Lots of it.
17. Anything that tries to bring me down, I will destroy it. I’m done losing battles and having to die and come back from it all. I’m done torturing myself for having weaknesses.

I hope that from now on I’ll be able to write something positive to share with everyone. Within my minds eye I no longer see these things as something impossible to have anymore.

Being Real.

These last few days have had on me on edge in a serious way. Yesterday I dodged what would have been serious bullet to me. My “Cold Feet” and anxieties were spiking up. It made it difficult to do stuff that needed attention like paying my tuition.

I admit that I’m a bad procrastinator. I own up to that. But I had neglected my student email for I don’t know how long. And I didn’t want to log in and check on anything. It’s not that I didn’t want to, but I was afraid of what I might see. As if I was afraid that some Babadook-looking monstrosity was going to leap out from the computer screen and eat my face off. The same is also true for paying up the tuition online. That same fear was just crushing and consuming me. My insides were tied in painful knots, my head felt like it was being smashed against a rock, and my joints were aching like I had been beaten to the floor by my so-called Babadook.

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I didn’t understand the logic behind any of it. I had to coach myself into logging online to get the stuff done. I had to psych myself up as if I was getting ready for a WWE title match inside a steel cage. With extreme rules and no disqualification rules. And in my mind I already felt and thought I was looking like this….

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So I finally said, “Fuck this noise! Let’s do the damn thing already! Get it over with!” And then I find out that I’m too late. I missed the payment deadline by just one day. At that point I went to my student email. I had like 80 something unopened messages. No monsters except for the ones occupying my mind came leaping out the screen, so put that in the plus column. I see the email that says my schedule was cancelled. But in that message it read, “If you want to re-register you can at 12:01 AM.”

I looked up the classes and I saw that there were still seats available. Which meant that I still had a shot. It was 9:00 PM. So I set up a timer for midnight. I put on a little Netflix binge to kill the time and relax. I scolded myself for taking so long to pay up and for being a neurotic mess.

“Dude, get your shit together man!”
“Stop being such a giant panty waist!”
“You can fix this! You can handle this! It’s not a monster, it’s not a failure, it’s just a hiccup.”
“I will not lose my shit. I will not lose my shit. IwillnotlosemyshitIwillnotlosemyshitIwillnotlosemyshit….”

The alarm goes off. I take a few deep breaths because again, I’m psyching myself up. I even did stretches. But THEN…..it turns out I’ve got a hold placed on me. Then came out my new catchphrase, “Motherfucker, WHAT?!!”

The hold was placed on me by the EIT (Early Intervention Team). I go back to my email. Turns out they sent me two letters. That hold had been put into effect since early this month and I didn’t know anything. So even if I payed before the deadline I still would’ve been blocked off. My Babadook is clawing right at me. I feel the wounds, my blood pouring out, the battlefield is a mess. I opened up the letter and the way it read went something like this;

“Hi. A caring faculty/staff member alerted us about you. We want you to know that we’re here to help you. Please get in contact with us. Until you do a hold has been placed on your grades and registration. Please call us during our business hours between 9:00 AM to 5:00 PM.”

At this point I’m really fighting in my mind and I do my best calm myself down in reality. Deep breaths in, deep breaths out. I make a new battle plan.

“I’m gonna get some sleep now. When I wake up I’m gonna fix myself some breakfast and coffee. I call these guys the minute that office opens up. Explain to them what’s happened. Get that hold removed.”

So I do get some sleep. But of course it wasn’t a pleasant sleep. My parents always wake up early. And of course I wake up when they do…..at 5:00 AM. And then I can’t go back to sleep. I don’t leave my room. Nobody knows the situation, I don’t want to tell anyone about this. I want to handle this on my own and I was already having a hard enough time maintaining a decent poker face. Both my parents aren’t gone until 7:30 or so. I get up and I do what I say I was going to do. I set up a timer on my phone so I don’t wuss out.

Babadook wants to go a couple more rounds in my head. I’m somewhat more rested. He’s going low and I’m going high with everything I got. We exchange dialogue…

You’re going to fail….everything has already fallen into ruin…you have no more hope….

I’m hollering back, “Says you ugly!! These people want to help me!@ It proves that not everyone is some heartless robot like you’ve always told me! They want me to continue my journey!!”

The alarm goes off. I brace myself. I say, “Give it five more minutes. Let the guys in the office get settled in. You might get a machine anyway…”

It’s 9:05 AM. I talk myself out of giving them ten more minutes and I make the call while I still have some nerve. One ring…two rings….three rings….

“Hello you’ve reached the Appalachian State’s EIT office. This is Belinda how may I help you?”

I bite my tongue to keep myself from saying, “Holy shit!! She’s a live human!”

I then explain to Belinda my situation. She was nice, she was calm, she wasn’t being a hatchet faced bitch about anything. I’m still on edge though. I’m nervous. I even fumbled when she asked me what my phone number was so she could get back to me again. I said, “Hang on!” Five seconds pass and I remember. I felt like I had to dig out the info from a shallow grave in my mind.

Belinda elaborates that EIT is there to give me help. I tell her I’m not in Boone but I can be there Monday to meet with them, but I needed that hold taken off first.

I let her know, “I’m in a tight enough spot as is and this is not helping me at all. I’m not placing blame on you or anything, I’m just voicing my frustrations.”

Belinda is understanding, she says she’s going to discuss this with her people, we’ve got a schedule down for Monday and Tuesday in the afternoon. I’m told to expect them to reach me back soon either by phone call or e-mail. I say, “Thank you”. She says, “Happy to help. Please have a nice day.”

So now I had to play the waiting game. I’m doing my best to keep calm and not focus on the negative and convincing myself, “They just want to help out. Let them help. They are not going to meet up with me to expel me or execute me.”

I’m listening to music, I’m watching Netflix, I make a post called “The Happy List” trying to accentuate the positive so that the negative can stop having power over me. It did help, but the hours are flying by. There’s no new messages in my inbox. Oh but I’m getting news about the new house and the manager is preparing the lease. So if I wasn’t sure about getting the house before it’s looking like I am now.

The clock reads 4:00 PM. One hour until the EIT closes the down. Phone goes off and its another lady from App State, not Belinda, but she was nice and cool to me. She’s confirming the appointment time and she’s lifting the hold temporarily so I can go ahead and re-register and pay. The hold would be lifted for 24 hours. I can finally breathe, the knots in my stomach are being untied, and I’m pretty sure that I just beat the shit out of my Babadook.

I didn’t need 24 hours. All I needed was five minutes. I jumped right on it. I punched in the CRNS for a quick registration. I got them. My spot in those classes weren’t taken. I rush to the checkout. I put in all that information and confirmed payment. The deed was done.

But then I still felt a little bit of unease. Normally I get a receipt emailed to me. I read the net balance, it’s say zero. But that wasn’t enough proof for me. Something in my mind was just not processing and registering the information. I even sent an email to the student accounts office to double check if that payment went though without any problems. And they got back to me. I even got a PDF that showed off everything.

Finally I calm down. I drink a nice glass of wine to relax and I start playing The Legend of Dragoon on my Playstation 3. I feel like I just won a serious battle. But now that the smoke has cleared up in my mind I’m just now realizing how ridiculous my reaction to all of this really was.

I thought I understood everything there was to my depression. I thought I understood all my main cognitive distortions and all the things that trigger them. I thought I had good strategies to countering those triggers.

Finally I just said out loud to myself, “What the actual and existing fuck is up with me? I’m getting triggered by the silliest tiny shit ever!!”

It’s not easy for me to share the exact details about stuff like this. But this is what I deal with. That Babadook analogy I made isn’t a joke. It’s bad enough when I interpret things as a failure, but more often I turn things into a monster. Then I battle them tooth and nail with whatever is handy. I don’t share this part with anybody. Anytime I say I’m fighting my demons I make sure everyone knows I’m speaking figuratively. But there are times when the figurative feels literal.

I’m sharing this because I need to be real about everything. I need to put it all out there. Because it helps me take a good honest look at myself and gives me a good idea on what I have to do. It was a horrible mistake to keep quiet about anything. The last time I showed this much candor my so-called friends I had at the time kept calling me an “attention whore” or “drama queen” or “playing the victim” or whatever. And those are the g-rated labels I’ve had slapped on me. They think that they’re being helpful, that they’re showing tough love, but it’s not. Even if they thought they’re intentions were good all it did was stigmatize things which pretty much just placed a gag order on me when all I was doing at the time was something that was helping me. It was therapeutic for me, but it was just too much for them. And it was annoying for them. Which is ironic because they’re into a lot of shit that is several times more annoying, stupid, and tacky like fucking CakeFart videos (I shit you not, that’s an actual thing).

I never wanted to be “that guy” who talks about mental health problems and everything that comes with it from the lows of bad days to the highs of recovering from failures and trying to live a better life. But if being real with my shit, doing what I believe is helpful for me, and blogging about it here or sharing it on a Facebook post or whatever makes me in “that guy” then FUCK IT. I am “that guy”.

I know I’m not always right about things, but at least I’m always real. If I’m going to have any shot at leading a life with better mental health and reaching my goals I need to be real about my shit. I need to own up to it. I need to face myself. I have to play the hand that’s being dealt to me.

I’d rather be real then be fake as all Hell.

My Happy List

I’ve been “that guy” who talks nonstop about depression and anxiety and the things that trigger it to put me on edge. I need to take the time to get out of the darkness. I’m playing out some music that I haven’t listened to in a long time. It’s gotten me feeling all nostalgic and shit. Then I re-watched this video on HartBeat’s YouTube channel (I highly suggest subscribing) where she lists all things that make her happy. So I thought it a good idea to do the same thing. This really needs no further explanation so here I go!

There will be a crap ton of photos. Not sorry for that.

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This is Jewels. She was my best friend and hands down the coolest dog in the world ever. She wasn’t my dog. I took care of her when her owners were traveling. My Mom got me the gig. I was like “What are you, nuts?! I don’t know anything about dogs! Let alone taking care of them!” My Mom said she’d help out and that the dog sitting money would go straight to me. Then I met her and it was love at first sight. She was the sweetest thing ever. And she was so well behaved too. She didn’t bark or jump up on any furniture and she listened to me as if I were her owner. I took care of her for a huge part of the summer in 2012. It was one of the best times I ever had. Taking care of her was always a joy. Especially during Christmas time. She wasn’t mine, but I loved her like she were my own and she loved me back in return. She was a better friend than anyone I had ever known. Jewels died from cancer back in February. But I have nothing but the most beautiful memories of her. Sometimes I can still smell her on me. I look back on all the times she followed me around, kept me company in the kitchen, and always rolling over the floor and asking for belly rubs. I miss her dearly. But it’s thanks to her that I realize that I am capable of loving someone other than myself and can be loved in return unconditionally.

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Coffee! Because without it I’d have no reason to get up in the morning. Wired is better than tired, twitching is better than bitching, death before decaf!

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This fucking beautiful frozen delight!! It’s like an organism that goes off in your mouth in every spoonful. Not lying!

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I love anime! Especially Miyazaki films. They’re some of the best things I’ve ever seen. Other anime titles that I love include, but are not limited to; Sailor Moon, Akame Ga Kill, Inuyasha, and The Slayers. There’s a lot more, but I want to keep this part short and sweet.

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My video game collection! I’m an avid gamer and I’m proud of it! Most people I knew from childhood were always into Harry Potter or Lord of the Rings. Nothing wrong with those titles, I like them but I didn’t get into them until later. While everyone was into Tolkienn or Rawling’s works I lost myself in games like Final Fantasy 8, Legend of Dragoon, Chrono Cross, Valkyrie Profile. These titles, for me, weren’t just fun games to play at the time, but I fell in love with the presentation of everything they had. Interesting characters, compelling plots (I was 14 when I played these games, shut up), beautiful music, and a worlds that I loved escaping into when reality sucked. I collect titles like they’re Pokemon and I collect game consoles like they’re the Dragon Balls! Except for Xbox One. I’m not into the Microsoft franchise and plus they don’t offer up a lot of titles that I’m interested in. And even when there is a good game coming out on XboxOne that I’d like to play it’s also available for PS4. I am a Sony boy!

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Pokemon and pocky! Because reasons….

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The WWE! I love pro-wrestling! I watched it every week as another way of escaping reality and getting out of my head. My top favorite superstars are Sasha Banks, Bayley, Becky Lynch, Sami Zayn, Tyler Bate, TMDK, The Revival, and Finn Balor (who by the way is my future husband. He just doesn’t know it yet). I especially love the WWE games because there is an entire community dedicated to creating their own wrestling promotions, superstars, championship belts, etc. This is a photo of one of my own creations that I’m particularly proud of. I want to make my own promotion and put it on YouTube, but time management is an issue. One of these days it’s going to happen. Probably with the release of WWE 2k18.

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Anything that came out of Dorothy Zbornak’s mouth on Golden Girls. Golden Girls in general. Shameless binging of Golden Girls via HULU….need I go on?

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Seeing random shit like this that always has my sides hurting from laughing so hard.

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Everyone has childhood superheroes. Almost everyone will say Batman, Green Lantern, or the X-Men. Yeah they’re great heroes, but for me it’s always been the Power Rangers. I’ve been with them from the very beginning (which should be a huge hint as to how old I really am). I’ve kept it a secret from a lot of people to avoid ridicule while growing up. My closest friends know about this because we’d always play as Power Rangers ourselves. We’d create our own villains, monsters, zords, and act out our own Ranger characters. This played a huge impact on my creativity when I was younger. The Power Rangers were always one of the few constant things I’ve had that brought me much needed comfort whenever I had to move away and transfer to a new school and just couldn’t connect with people. Plus getting up on Saturday mornings to catch a new episode was always something to look forward to. And yes, I’ve seen the new Power Rangers movie and I FUCKING LOVED IT!! Rotten Tomatoes and all the haters can just SUCK IT!! I walked out of that theater as a very happy vintage nerd! While I’m at it I also watched and enjoyed the OTHER Power Rangers movies from the 1990’s. YES, even Turbo! I also enjoyed the rebooted Ghostbusters movie and enjoyed it for what it was! Gonna stop here before this rant eats up the rest of the post!!

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Hand written drafts! It feels so good to work that pen across the paper and fill up the page space! I’m actually preferring that than staring at a blank Word document for hours and wanting to beat the shit out of that blinking cursor which I always feels is mocking me!!

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My cooking apron! Anytime I put it on I’m like, “Yeah baby!! Let’s chef things up tonight!”

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Good pizza! Because reasons…

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Snow. I know I like to piss and moan about all the things that are wrong with Boone and Appalachian State. But they do get beautiful snow. It reminds me of life in Ohio where I was born. I love playing in the snow. I love wearing my winter’s best clothing. All the best looking clothes are meant for cold weather, let’s be real. I love being snowed in and drinking good coffee and being with people I care about. I love watching the snow fall. I especially love all the summer people suffer because they can’t show off their muscle guns or bikini bods. I’m like, “Uh oh!! Time to get a personality, STAT!”

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These little guys! These are my cousin’s kids. The one on the far left is Sammy, Charlie in the center, and the girl is Katarina. I never thought I’d be good with kids. I have a hard enough time dealing with people closer to my own age. But these kids like Jewels have helped me learn and grow so much. They love me and I love them to death. One day when I was having a really bad day and the suicidal thoughts kept creeping in I got a surprise FaceTime call from my cousin and it was Katarina who wanted to call. Not to say “Hi”, but to say “Please come back! Please come over!” It made me come back to my senses. She’s a little saint for making that call. I’ll never forget the timing. It makes me want to work harder to make myself better and be there for those kids.

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Last but certainly not least is my Mom. Here she is with Jewels, spoiling her. My Mom is the sweetest person alive, but she’s also one of the strongest people that I know. If she says that I’m the strong one it’s only because I got my strength from her. She’s my biggest reason for wanting to work harder and get better. I’ve disappointed her in the past and always had a hard time forgiving myself for it. I want to stop being such a huge screw up. I want to be successful in life. I want a family of my own that she’d love to welcome into her life. I know I always have her support, no matter what. Which is why I want to keep going forward and keep fighting. I came clean to my Mom about my depression and told her that I wanted to hurt myself and die. It made her cry hearing that. It was another huge wake up call. Even if I went ahead and ended things so I wouldn’t have to feel pain my Mom, my cousins, and those kids would be destroyed. I don’t want to be the reason that they cry or hurt. I’m going to turn things around for me and them. I’m gonna fight my nightmares like a real warrior and I’m going to come out on top.

That’s all I got for now. I’m probably going to do a continuation of this list at some point because when it comes down to it there is a lot of things that make me happy. I’ve kept myself closed off from it all because I became so addicted to my own misery. I want to be happy, I deserve to be happy, there are reasons to be happy all around me just like there is for everyone else. Only major difference is that those things don’t come from the end of a beer bottle, a bong, or anyone that’s lives by “hooking up” with the first person that they see.

Until then, later days!