I Will Not Be Silent.

This is going to be a different type of entry. It’s the sort of entry I never thought I’d ever have to write. So something happened yesterday. To save myself the trouble of having to type out all the words, refer to the screenshot below of a Facebook status post I made yesterday.

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There’s the whole story. I feel disgusted, insulted, and pissed off. I can’t believe that I’d ever be on the receiving end of this bullshit. He says he’s sorry but I’m not feeling anything sincere from it. He actually thought that video was going to get a rise out of me? Give me a fucking break…

I’ve sent a report to Facebook help center, I’ve taken a screenshot of my facebook post from yesterday, I’ve told my friends about this, I am not keeping quiet about it.

I tried to be cool. I tried to be classy by not even calling out his name, but fuck all that!! I am not Jesus, I am not perfect, I will not show mercy or forgiveness. I will tell my story. You cannot silence me.

That’s it. I’m done.

 

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Finally There is Hope.

So ever since I made last night’s post I’ve begun to feel a major shift in my mind. I feel like my mind is being rewired. It shows that I was right to accept my depression as part of me when I did. I kinda wish I came to this realization sooner, but this is the way it happened.

Fighting my depression the way that I have has been the wrong way to handle things. Alienating people might have kept me safe from harm, but it’s also built up walls that I now have to break myself. Going at things on my own has only taken me so far. Holding on to this do-all-or-die-trying attitude has made a giant mess of things. It’s all wrong and it all has to go.

I’ve made mistakes along the way, but I accept it all for it is. I’ve grappled with the darkness that festers inside me, but I don’t deny the growth I’ve experienced and that it has helped me to find myself. I have a long road ahead of me, but I’m willing to go forward. Even if it means risking something more painful and frightening than anything else I’ve endured.

My life is a mess. I am a mess. But that’s okay. I’m still rewriting the narrative of my personal story and I’m still willing to do whatever it takes to live a life of better mental health.

I have people in my life that may never fully understand my experiences, my thoughts, my feelings, my journey, or my story. But that doesn’t matter anymore. Because it’s all mine. I’m the one that needs to understand it all. Nobody else.

I don’t feel so scared anymore. I actually feel more hopeful for the future.

Here’s my new plan. I’m going to sign up for the summer semester to make up for my bombed classes. I’m going ahead the with the walking ceremony for graduation and put the experience behind me. Then when I come back I’m going to resume therapy and I’m going to work together with my counselor to ensure that I stay on track with my goals of finishing things off for good. At the same time I’m going to continue with medication and doing my part to live a life where I don’t have to fight monsters living in my head everyday. My brain is getting rewired and it’s going to take me to someplace better. But I have to do my part to ensure that it stays that way. It’ll be bigger than any other challenge I’ve ever had to face. Schoolwork pales in comparison.

I don’t feel like running away back home like I did before. I feel foolish thinking about it now. I’ve got butterflies in my stomach about everything, but I’m letting it process and I’m moving forward anyway. I will live with my depression, but not as curse. But it will be where I will draw power from. Then I will use that power to do amazing things. I will have power over it and not allow it have power over me.

That’s all I got for now. I’m back on the mission. Time for action!

Rewrite the Narrative

So Easter break has finished up. The dreaded G-Day is rapidly approaching. Oh yeah and I just finished a session with a counselor and there’s the doctor’s appointment on Monday to discuss medication.

My head has been in a whirlwind and I feel like I hurt everywhere. But I’m still finding ways to continue going forward.

I suffer from a lot of cognitive distortions. But I also hold on to a lot of misconceived notions of how things are supposed to be.

I came to App State wearing rose-colored glasses. Even though when I got my acceptance letter things weren’t that great. My experience here has been very mixed. To be perfectly honest it feels like the negative has outweighed the positive during my time here. But even until now I held on to this idea of how things are supposed to turn out or what my life is supposed to be like right now.

I should’ve been done with the college experience a long time ago. I should’ve met and married someone by now. I should already be world travelled. I should already be a best-selling author or at least have some cushy job. I should have all my dreams become a reality by now.

I’m only now remembering the first entry that I wrote last year. I started off by saying, “Well…that didn’t go as planned”.

There was a point where it looked like things were going to turn out exactly to my design. But somewhere along the way everything changed. I have no idea what caused this change. I don’t even know when, but it happened.

“Rewriting the narrative” was the theme of my latest session. It came up when we talked about graduation day and what it’s supposed to be about. Again, I said, “It feels more like survival. Not real success”.

I had a vision in my mind’s eye about the things that I wanted to happen. Things I was willing to work to make happen. But then they didn’t. All the negatives kept outweighing the positive and sapped away all energy that I could’ve poured in for effort.

Success in my mind’s eye meant that I would have plenty of things to brag about just like dumbass jug headed Mike Garrison. It meant being on the honor, being a straight A student, having jobs lined up, having the chance to study abroad, and having accumulated positive memories of college experience complete with adventure, laughter, friendships, and wild rabbit sex on days that end with “Y”.

Success in the real world after college is supposed to mean landing a dream job, paying off student debt and bills with relative ease, home ownership, raising a family, having a 9 to 5 job without any mental meltdowns or wanting to kill yourself, being a normal, productive, tax paying member of society who doesn’t have monsters and cosmic battles in his head on a daily basis. Where evil keeps winning, might I add. My place is a dangerous place to be these days.

I realized today that I have to let go what things are supposed to be like in my mind. I have to really let go. I want to keep believing that I have a fairy tale life ahead of me. I want to believe that I’ll find my “something better than this”. But in the mean time I have to accept the hard reality of some things. And I need change my idea of what success is for me. People that are similar to me are welcome to agree or disagree, but here I go.

-Success is a life of better mental health.
-Success is choosing to live even on days where you feel like dying.
-Success is putting forth effort in everything you do even when you feel like quitting.
-Success is pushing forward when your mind is in a whirlwind and you feel hurt everywhere.
-Success is collecting things and moments of beauty that bring light to a world that is filled with darkness, ugliness, and madness.
-Success is having people in your life that care about you. A lover, family, or close friend, human or animal.
-Success is being comfortable with yourself and having confidence in your skills, whatever they might be.
-Success is surviving your worst nightmares and living to tell the story about it.
-Success is being happy with you are and what you have going for yourself in life.

That’s all I’ve got for now. Maybe I’ll add to the list later. Until then, later days.

Feeling Sparky Again

It’s been a minute since I’ve last updated. This post is merely proof that I’m still alive. Also it’s an excuse to show this beautiful pro wrestler I completed with a new outfit.

Everything that’s happened to me before, everything that’s happening to me now, this is the fate I want so desperately to re-write. It’s why I took on the name “Pen” over my given name “Alex”.

I’m going to get better. I’m going to conquer my worse nightmares. I’m going to finally be happy. I’m going to live. I’m going to make up for all the times I’ve felt sad and made my loved ones worry about me. I’m going to give life everything I got without pulling anymore punches.

I will turn my pain into power and I will create the life I want. And I will get what I want through any means necessary.

Never The End

“Everything turns out all right in the end. And if it hasn’t then it’s not the end.”

I came back home on Friday night. I say my Mom through a talk about where I am mentally. She froze when I told her about my symptoms. She didn’t scream, shout, or do anything that made me feel crazier than I already think I am. She didn’t try to minimize anything. She didn’t call me a crybaby or say that I was dramatic. She listens to me. I broke down and cried. I felt the walls finally begin to crumble down around me.

My anxieties have fueled my depression and have messed me up. It’s the same thing that I went through last year. The biggest difference is that I got the jump on things when the intrusive suicidal thoughts started coming back to me. It’s just like before in the sense that all of it has blindsided me. There’s no reason for me to be sad, afraid, or want to die.

I stand by what I’ve written before. Killing myself would just destroy everybody else. My pain wouldn’t go away. Others would just inherit it in my place. I won’t do that to the people that I love.

Before I said I would rather carry this burden instead. But no. I’m going to do all that is possible to fight back against the Nightmare Syndrome.

One of my biggest fears was that I’d be disappointing my Mom. She has all these hopes for me and I swore that I would become stronger than I was before. I swore that I would not ever give up on things like I’ve done in the past. I’ve had the wrong idea of what “being strong” is supposed to mean.

I need help. Yeah, I’m in counseling. Yes, I have creative methods that help. But I’m at the point where I cannot pull my punches on this. Even with my counseling and my methods I still have anxieties that act up. The biggest difference is that I’m talking to my Mom about this. I’ve never told her the full extent of what I’ve been going through.

Now that I have told her, we are in full agreement about this. Between the choices of doing what’s right for me or worry about everything else, I come first.

I haven’t really taken care of myself in the way that I should. I haven’t put my own needs first. Maybe that’s why my energy keeps draining the way that it does. And I haven’t been entirely honest with myself either. I’ve overestimated my own strength. And I’ve been buying into so many stigmas surrounding my depression and anxiety. Even when I know that stigmas are bullshit. My own pride is setting me up for self-destruction.

I’m at the point where I can’t do things on my own. I can’t keep people in the dark about what I’m going through. I have to admit to my own weakness before I’m capable of digging down deep and finding new strength.

Things are really rocky for me at the moment. Not just mentally, but also academically. This is supposed to be my last semester. I’m supposed to graduate. I have so much anxiety that surrounds this fact alone.

I fear for what’s going to happen in the future. I know what I want to do, but I still have to get over my fears to make it happen. I’m constantly dreading the idea of failing at everything. I keep thinking this thought that if I fail then it’s the end of everything. The end of my journey, my dreams, and the world as I know it.

My world has been destroyed so many times. My mind has been in ruins for so many years. I’ve lost many battles against my demons. And the biggest reason why for all of this is that I’m simply not capable of handling everything on my own. That’s not because of weakness. It’s just a fact. No one person can truly carry the weight of everything. Not everything can be overcome with sheer willpower alone.

I talk about having demons living in my head called the Nightmares. I’m now trying to take the positive and turn it all into heroes and weapons used to fight back against them. That’s in the imaginary sense. That’s for the fantasy world that lives in my mind which will be one of the key factors to beating this. But there are people in my reality that are here to help me when I need it. I matter to them. There’s still beauty in this world. I just need to be willing to go out and look for it. I also need to be able to create my own with my own creativity. I still have the ability to turn my dreams into reality.

As far as school goes I’m going to try to salvage things with school. I don’t need to be some honor roll student. I just need to get the hell out. I’m going to try to finish things for me. And if things don’t go my way, that’s okay. I have a backup plan.

If things don’t turn out well then I’m going to transfer schools. I’ll finish things in Charlotte. The idea is based on this…

Going to school in UNC Charlotte will allow to finish my education, be closer to family, and I’ll be home. I won’t have to give up or run away from anything like before.

In all honesty I was beginning to think that it was huge mistake coming to Appalachian State. Nothing has really gone my way since I’ve arrived there. Nothing’s gone my way since I got my acceptance letter. I could give a list of reason why things feel like they aren’t working out in Boone. Life in Boone has tested me beyond my limits in every possible way. I am stronger for it, yes. But I’m not strong enough to handle everything on my own. In place of what I believe true strength is I’ve inherited new wisdom.

That and an endless supply of writing material. Some people should’ve stayed on their best behavior when I’m around. Just saying…

There is no “end” for me. More importantly there’s no bad ending for me. I have a goal in mind. I have my “weapons”. And I’m ready to dive into action.

These inner demons of mine….THEY ARE FUCKING TOAST!!!!

Casting Intentions

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Cast an intention with all your might, for the winds of change shall blow strong tonight

I’m overwhelmed, stressed out, and scared shitless all of a sudden.

I thought I was okay after the last post, but now I feel like I’m scared for tomorrow to even come.

I’m trying to gather myself now. Make my goals known.

I’m gonna wake up tomorrow. I’m going to be grateful to be alive. I’m going to brave through the entire day like I always do. After that I’m going to keep going forward. I don’t want to give up on anything or run away from everything. Not ever again.

It’s time like this I wish I had someone to come save me. But I have to save myself. Like always.

Unstuck Yourself

Goddamnit I miss cooking my own meals. I’ve been living off take out for almost two weeks now. My defense is that check I waited for was taking too damn long to process and I was starving myself for days. So maybe I got a little carried away. But to have sushi and ramen noodles delivered to your front door? That’s beautiful.

But I miss the rush I’d get from cooking. What have I made in the last two weeks? That ginger tea and some coffee. I want to make curry rice, ninjin shiri shiri, fried chicken, hamburger steak, bibimbap, and goddamnit I want to make a fucking bento box!!!!! But nooooo….

I have midterms and projects that require my full attention. Between waiting for the meat to defrost, the food prep, and the cleaning up it’s going to eat up a lot of time.

I find myself dealing with a lot of indecision lately. Something that was covered in my session yesterday is triggering this. It’s making me more self-aware of how indecisive I’ve been. Feeling stuck in between everything. I’m pretty sure I wrote about something like that pretty recently.

I’m sick of it. How do I know that I’m sick of it? Because my brain just keeps screaming, “FUCK IT!!”

I’ve reached Wade Wilson status! I say FUCK IT!!

Cook > Order In
Pull My Punches < Raise Hell on my Enemies.
Compare Myself to Others < DIY Shit My Way
Hate Myself < Love Myself
Be a Victim < Be a Warrior
Rot like Bad Meat < Fight with everything I have.

Oh yeah…what to cook for dinner?

Something easy! Cooked at turbo speed!! Will upload a photo later!

Yesterday during my session I gave the counselor a recap of what’s been happening over the last week.

I don’t know if I ever mentioned that I make monsters out of the negativity in my mind or not (That was sarcasm). But based on what we discussed yesterday it looks like if I’m going to fight smarter and not just harder.

I will illuminate.

The monsters in my head, the Nightmares, come in different shapes and sizes. Their appearances always vary. And they have different “power levels”. Some are bigger and meaner than others.

Best way to point it out is to draw an example from Ghostbusters. The original film, for all you people that love to hate on the 2016 version….

There’s small fry like Slimer. These Nightmares are annoying more than anything else, but they’re easier to deal with. They’re easier to manage. It’s about as difficult as powering through a small wave.

Then there’s more moderate sized threats like those demon dogs, Zuul and Vinz Clortho. These pose a bigger problem for me. It’s when I have to deal with bigger worries that go beyond general anxieties. Dealing with them requires more effort. This is when I have to use tools learned from therapy and all the other things that can counter cognitive distortions, anxieties, negative feelings, and the like.

Finally there’s the big fish of them all, Gozer and Stay Pufft Marshmallow Man. When Nightmares like these come along that’s when it feels like the world has turned into nothing, but rot and pitch black. That’s when I reach my breaking point. That’s when I start feeling completely overwhelmed and beaten down by everything which then makes it easier for me get triggered by the smallest things. This is when I’m at my darkest place. And usually this is where I know I can’t handle things on my own.

My depression is the great big bad in my life. I want to confront it head on and take it down permanently. But there’s all these other battles that need to be fought against the Nightmares that rank below it.

Up until now I’ve been putting all my eggs in one basket with basic strategies. Making use of CBT, writing, keeping myself busy with cooking and schoolwork. But now I have to do more to fight effectively. That’s why I’m going to counseling, trying to meditate, make use of tactile sensory therapy, be willing to undergo medication, and share the things that go on in my head here on WordPress. Even though it means having to share something as crazy as how I just described my Nightmare Syndrome, go into painful details of every meltdown I’ve had, and risk being labeled some attention seeking drama queen.

Writing helps. Being creative helps. Knowing that there are things that only I’m capable of doing helps. But there’s still so much more that I need to do. If devoting myself to writing or creating anything was all it took then my battles would’ve ended long ago.

I have to get over my trust issues. I have to talk to my parents about what I go through mentally. I have to stop detaching myself from reality. I have to be more decisive. I have to stop white knuckling everything. I have to more willing to ask for help when I really need it. I have to do things differently because repeating the same behavior and action while expecting something new to happen is what truly defines insanity.

I’ve already declared war against my inner demons. So I’m pulling all out the stops and I’m going to fight until the end.

And I’ll do it all with…

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