There’s still time to write, #NaNoWriMo or not

At the end of the month it’s easy to feel dejected, feel like you aren’t going to reach the goal of 50k, or whatever goal you set for yourself. So I’m here to remind you of something:

No matter how much you write in the next 8 days, if you write any words it’s more than no words.

You can keep writing even if you’re not going to reach the goals you set out for yourself. And that’s still a good thing all-in-all.

Last year a lot of people around me used the hashtag #NotSoWriMo, as a way to indicate that they were writing and joining in, but in a different way than the set goals of #NaNoWriMo.

I set up my own goal this month, which was to write every day if I could. And I’ve not been writing every day, but I’ve had the chance to learn what a good weekly writing schedule would look like for me. I also got the chance to figure out what works for me right now.

In 2010 I wrote a full 50k draft. No editing just writing writing writing. But since then I’ve not even touched that draft, even if it plays at the back of my mind occasionally. Mostly because it’s such a big draft that I didn’t try to write well. I was just trying to write it all.

I don’t necessarily think this was a bad thing for me, but I have started to learn that just trying to write a set amount of words in a set amount of time means I will spiral on meta writing or loop a lot. Instead of like when I’m writing by hand in the journal, contemplating what I’m writing and trying to craft good sentence, after good sentence. I guess it’s similar to the brick laying (Will Smith). I’ve found that for me, a well placed brick now means less work later. Imagine having to tear it all down to adjust it later. Phew.

Sorry, this went a bit off track. What I’m saying here is, there’s no one way of doing this writing thing. And I hope that you can find the encouragement and energy up keep writing.

Give yourself these last 8 days this writing month, and continue writing. Each day you write another sentence is more than you had before.

I believe in you.

Today we’re in mourning

Today we’re in mourning. I don’t know who we’re mourning, but we are. And it’s strange, to not know who or why or how. Not that it’s the first time. And it’s strange that we ended up with this just a day after I published an old poem about grief. A poem I don’t remember when I wrote, just that I wrote it and was going to publish it later, or continue writing on it.

Not every poem has to be complete. Maybe the poem being incomplete adds to the poetry sometimes, especially when it’s about grief. An interruption, to ourselves, to our lives, to someone else’s life. Not just an interruption, but an abrupt ending. A goodbye without saying goodbye. A loss of a friend, and a future of what could’ve been. A future that will not be anymore.

We may grieve for ourselves, our relationship with them. We may grieve for them, their family and their loss. Grieve for the future with their children, family and relations that they don’t get to continue. We may grieve that we never got to tell them how much they meant to us.

There’s a story here, but that story isn’t mine to tell and it never will be unless I am given the honor of write that story.

Today we’re in mourning. I’m feeling it through-out my entire body, and I know that I’m joining this too. So I say we. Even though I don’t know them, and I don’t know their name.

Today we’re in mourning. We sit in solemn silence, and we are distracting ourselves the best we can, from the thoughts and the feelings. I am writing, but the act of writing is a way to refocus, to process, to mediate, on the life that was lost. Because someone died. It wasn’t my person who died, but it was one of his people, and he is my person, so when he grieves I grieve.

Today we’re in mourning, and that’s okay. It’s horrible to say that it’s okay. Because it’s not. It’s not okay that someone lost their life way too early, but we keep losing so many people before their time. When is it ever truly someone’s time?

Today we’re in mourning. And it’s not okay. We’re not okay. But we will be. For now, we grieve a loss of life.

Poem: Grief begets grief

Grieving for one
Brings grief for another
Memories of pain
Hurt
Tears
Rushing back
With hints of
How it felt last
When they passed on

Today it's another
With the reminder
Of grief
Of grieving
Of mourning

Filled with sorrow
For loved ones
For friends
For dearly departed
Bereft of life too soon

89 years old
still too soon
to leave this earth
Even with great-grandchildren
still too soon

Grief begets grief

Finding myself in the darkness

This was written in the end of October, but I was unable to edit for quite a while. I didn’t publish this until today, because I wasn’t sure if it was going to stick, if I was going to find myself crying, wanting to run away, and die again. I think I wanted to future proof, before sharing this text that isn’t advice, especially since so much I talk about comes out as advice.


I keep having mental breakdowns. And it’s been getting increasingly harder to come out of them. I’ve felt a need to escape, to use all my remaining energy to just run away. From everyone and everything. All the while knowing that I don’t want to run away. So I stay and I suffer, unable to understand what’s going on with me.

Other than the glaringly obvious, that my meds is doing shit with my brain. I need to figure out what exactly. I know bits and pieces of it, it’s my new meds which are supposed to change things with my brain chemistry, there’s a reason I’m on legal speed. *laughs in ADHD* but also it seems to interact with my hormones and I don’t know how much of that is what. Then I have my anti-depressants on top and I don’t know if I need to adjust them down or up. If I had a choice I’d prefer to adjust them down to find out where I am without them but on the ADHD-meds. But that also feels increasingly dangerous as I’m currently in my worst depressive episode in very many years.

As you can tell, there’s a lot going on, and as you can tell by recent posts of mine, my mental health is not doing too well. But I’m alive, which is an achievement all on its own.

I’m slowly putting all the pieces together. Constantly referring to my life and my experiences as pieces of a puzzle. It’s tricky, and nearly impossible to figure out all of it in one go. On some days I’m living for the challenge and finding joy in pulling the threads—all balled together—apart, while on others it’s driving me mad.

I’ve always been an over-sharer, who a lot of people have looked at and laughed while I’ve been sharing my weird stories and experiences. I’ve been encouraged to get drunk and tell my tall tales, while everyone else in the room was nearly sober. And my friends giggled at me as I was having trouble getting from point A to point B. I would always go from A to D, maybe via F back to H, the C, I , and completely forget about B. This was my ADHD. My brain doesn’t work like everyone elses, and I just didn’t know until three months ago.

So yes, I’m going through the worst depression of my life, but it’s different this time, even if it’s just as painful. I have so many more tools in my tool box, at the ready. Unfortunately, I also have ADHD, so I don’t always remember what’s in that tool box, or where I put the toolbox, or I forgot to put the tools in there at all. Even though this is a metaphorical box, I have created a physical one, where I write down things on little cue cards, and they are neatly organized in a box. It took me 7 years to even start writing them since the idea came to me, a while before I even met my current partner. I have had the box since we started dating, I have had some of the cards since before then.

You see, I’m extremely self-aware, and sometimes I get completely lost, within myself, trying to fix things, trying to fix myself and people around me. If I’m trying to save someone else I don’t have to worry about myself, you see.

But sometimes, I get so lost that I have completely forgotten that I know how to swim, and that I know how to love. I’ve been threading water for so long, for so many years, that when the water is shallow enough for me to stand in, I forget. I don’t know. I’m that screaming child, because the water is too deep, and my parents are letting me go, and then I realize that I am able to stand in the water. That screaming, aches in me when I see it. I identify with it on such a deep level, because I keep getting so lost, unable to see the lighthouse at the shore line because I’m only looking straight up into the sky, and the sky is dark with clouds. And I’m freezing in the water. Ready to let go, and stop threading water.

I’m mixing metaphors, as we do, but I think you can understand how easy it is to just not be able to identify your situation. Over the past few months, I have been quite sure that I was going to die, not because of Covid-19, not directly, but because of my, what feels like a, very broken mind. I did not feel like I could see any way out of the darkness.

I didn’t hear my partner, asking me if I was okay. I’d always just respond with “yeah, whatever” or just not be able to say anything useful. A lot of “I don’t know”. Just saying I don’t know, is… usually an indication that we’re not okay, but we may not possess all the words yet.

I knew I wasn’t able to talk with my partner about how I was feeling inside, but I didn’t know why. I didn’t understand why. I thought this would be the end of me, or at the very least us.

I kept crying, but I didn’t want to cry. Crying is annoying, it bothers others, and I didn’t want to be a burden anymore. I am tired of being sick, and sick of being tired. I struggle to take care of myself on a good day, and I have so so many bad days.

What did I do to find my way back? I… I don’t know how it happened, I just know that it happened. I was cuddling with my partner, talking about my last bout of leaving the house and sitting on a bench, out in the cold night, not the rain this time. We had not been cuddling much in a very long time, for reasons. In the week prior I had began braiding his hair, giving us a few minutes of intimacy before he’d go to work every night. That ounce of intimacy reminded me, how good oxytocin can be. Yet, I had a complete breakdown that very same weekend. Again. So I was seeking comfort, before I could formulate what was going on. Saying that I was not okay.

As he was drifting off to sleep on his day off of work that week, with me right next to him I said, that I felt like I was invading his space, if he was falling asleep, and I should probably leave. He said to me, something that helped me find my way back again out of this darkness:

I’m falling asleep because I’m comfortable, I wouldn’t fall asleep with you here if I wasn’t feeling comfortable with you here.

And I realized, that I had locked myself into my head, I had created a distance by withdrawing because I thought that was what he wanted and needed. He had never told me to leave him alone all the time, but I thought that him being in his room meant he wanted space to be alone. So I left him alone, as it was the least I could do given that he works and keeps us safe and alive when I can’t work enough to pay my own bills let alone ours or any food on top of that.

No, I had decided that he was withdrawn, so I kept withdrawing. I didn’t ask to watch something together, I didn’t ask to sit together, I didn’t ask to cuddle anymore.

When he said those words I realized that I wasn’t alone. We’ve been together for 7.5 years now. We’ve been through some of the worst things in my life, but we’re still here. And we’re still building our home together.

I thought I wanted to edit this last bit out, because it was way too private, but as I read it again, I realize that I need to leave it in because it was important. Important in order to understand how easy it is to get obsessively lost within yourself, not seeing a way out.

I think it’s valuable to reach out to your friends. Whether you see them struggling or not, whether you’re struggling or not. Remind them and yourself that you are not alone, and maybe even help direct each other to the shore. The answer isn’t always “you’re not being treated right”, but it’s also not necessarily “you’re crazy”, it can be somewhere in between, or way out of orbit. This post isn’t a recommendation, or a solution for anyone else, this was my solution, for me, and it may not stick, but I did feel like it was a proper breakthrough in the most positive ways.


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To Follow your own advice

I know, it sucks. Like a lot. Coaches don’t play, you may want to yell at me, and that’s a very fair point. Yet, recognizing when you give advice you should follow yourself, it could actually help you do it. Let me explain.

Yesterday, a friend was sharing some of their struggles with their workload with their studies, and having to pretty much just put their head down and keep studying as much as possible to get through it. Which reminded me of when I had my worst crunch periods, but I was also very sick, so I had to balance everything I was doing on a knife’s edge to not completely crash. So I gave him advice based on how I took care of myself during such periods.

When I needed to crunch studies, the most important thing to me was to eat regularly and take a walk every day. At least one walk. This would depend on the level of my health, and at one point I had to just opt for much shorter walks, but more frequently both for mental and physical health reasons. I’ve gotten through the worst times, health wise, of my life while studying full time, and it’s been strange, but you pick up some interesting coping mechanisms, and one was take good care of yourself while studying.

So there I was, yesterday, unable to really go out the house and unable to take very well care of myself, and handle my physical and mental anxiety enough to get writing done as I wanted, and get resting done as I wanted. And it hit me, I wasn’t following my own advice. I knew in theory that I would be better off, if I wanted to write, if I took a walk every day. When I took a walk every day for like 14 days, I wrote two good articles in that time.

I have the proof that putting in this effort makes a difference. I got the experience, to give me the knowledge what I can do to create a better better environment for myself. And since my goal for the coming 2 years is to write, if not daily at least a majority of the week’s days, establishing a pattern and habit of treating my self as well as I’d treat my friends would be a stable foundation to start on.

So here I am, again, sharing my advice, but advice that I want to follow myself. I want to write more, and in order to be able to write, I need to take a walk at least every other day. And to not feel icky, I need to shower, and I need to remember to feed myself because my brain is doing a lot of work. I need to remember to take breaks and go up and just do something else. I need to allow myself restful sleep, even on days I haven’t written anything.

I can work on figuring out what habits work better for me. But still keep treating myself with compassion, and care. Even on high anxiety days, I can help myself through because I know that 30min walk is very likely to make me feel better, and even if it doesn’t, that would’ve been 30minutes where I didn’t have to sit and just tense up, it was 30minutes I moved my body, and 30minutes I got to breathe fresh air, and 30minutes I got to listen to a book as I took my walk. It was 30minutes that I was able to meet cute dogs, or just see the colours of the leaves change in the park. It was 30minutes that I took a little bit better care of myself instead of just wallowing in my anxiety.

And even if it doesn’t work, I can always take a nap after my walk, and try again tomorrow.


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Mom, don’t read this. And if you do don’t cry.

Because there is darkness ahead, this text has the Content Warning: Suicide, Suicidal Ideation, Emotional Dysregulation, Rejection Sensitive Dysphoria.
It is okay to not read this text. If you do venture ahead, know that this text is raw and painful with a glimmer of hope splashed in, and some resources at the very end.

Dark raining clouds over swelling water, at the very horizon there’s a patch of sunshine, and a glimmer of hope.
Photo by Auro Queiroz from FreeImages

I took a walk tonight, in the dark and rainy British evening. I left the house without my phone, because I was not in the mood to be reached. I did however take my keys and locked the door behind me, out of consideration to indicate that I did indeed have my keys with me, as my partner was about to leave for his night shift.

As I began walking I started to wonder how many times had it been, since that first time when I took the cushioned kitchen chair, old and battered with striped corduroy covering the seat, out to the balcony. When I stepped up on it, looking down from the 8th floor, myself being only 12 years old… How many times have I not killed myself?

Can we even consider not doing something an achievement? If this was a game, would it be an achievement equal to a no hit run? Is it the equivalent to a pacifist run? If I didn’t harm myself significantly, am I a better suicidal-person than the people who took a knife to their wrists, jumped in front of a train, drank themselves to death or swallowed a bottle of pills?

Or am I just an invisible suicidal person because I’m not in any statistics because I never actually tried to kill myself? Or was I registered as a possible attempted suicide that time when I ran away from my mom’s car in the dead of winter, threw my backpack out on the ice of the frozen-over river and wrote a throw-away text to my mom that I should throw myself in as well, to which she called the police to come find me? At least there was only so many rivers (one) in town, and there was only so many places I could go from the bus station.

In this particular case, it’s more probable that I’m not a statistic, because my mom worked together with the social worker that showed up at the police station, who said something to the effect of “I wont tell anyone at work about this”, like my mom needed to be ashamed of me running away in the dead of winter.

How many brushes with death had I avoided, since I was old enough to make angry decisions and run away? Me thinking that the first time I wanted to die was at 12 is probably just wishful-thinking. I’ve been trying to throw myself out of cars, since long before 12, because I had to get out of the situation and there’s not many options when you’re in a moving car on a country road, and have you no say in if the car moves or not. If you gotta go you gotta go. I do not remember how old I was the first time I opened the door while the car was going, but I do remember who was in the car with me. And I know for certain that the first time I opened it was not the first time I wanted to. It was only the first time I was prepared for the consequences. At the time I found it most infuriating that as soon as the person driving heard the door open they stopped the car. I can’t end this if you stop the car when I’m trying to throw myself out of it! Have you no manners?

All the while, someone can write and direct a scene with that without having ever done it, and it will hit home with a huge crowd. I really should sit down and watch Lady Bird at some point. I guess we write what we know, even if we don’t. I never threw myself out of a car with any success, so I wouldn’t call it hypocritical, that would make me the hypocrite. I do believe that she took a lot of emotions from her youth and poured it into that script, to great critical success, I might add. Even though she lightheartedly laughs about it in the interview, it’s probably just nerves.

Is it possible that I am coping with my current overflow of emotions by writing instead of killing myself? Yes, but also, not quite. I feel like I’m just at a point in my life where, even though everything inside of me is screaming that I should kill myself, and it’s probably for the best, I mean look at you you can’t live up to this capitalist hellscape’s standards and you never will, so why should you even be alive?, I have so much practice in that I know how to make not killing myself an active choice by now. It’s tonight’s activity, just like game night.

Oh yeah, I should respond to my partners text, to tell him I came back home alright. I came home, but I wasn’t alright, so I didn’t reply. I guess that’s unfair to him. Okay, that’s handled.

And I guess, I should probably check that place on social media where I’ve been spewing dark suicidal jokes for a good while, without any real response or check ins.

Even though it was true in the moment I wrote it, earlier in the evening,

“I’m okay, I’m safe, don’t worry about me I just needed to vent. I will not kill myself, and if the urge is too great I know who to call (not anyone I know, but rather some emergency mental health services)”

moments later it wasn’t true anymore, because everything changed in a mere second.

Nope, no interactions on the algorithm-free social media network. Probably, because I properly CWd (added Content Warnings) and labeled everything so no one had to see that absolute pile of shit on their feed, unless they wanted to. A feature I’m simultaneously thankful for, but also kind of saddened by. That said, if I had posted the same thing on Facebook, wait Facebook was down so no one would’ve seen it either way. Let’s get back on track, where were we? Oh yes, suicidal “game” nights.

During my walk in the rain, I began thinking about GNU/Natalie Nguyen, a young Vietnamese/American trans girl, and about the night almost exactly 4 years ago (minus 1 month) when she killed herself. She was at a party with friends, and had what seemed to everyone a great night. A loving night with people who loved, cherished and supported her. She told them that she went out for a walk, and then she posted to let us know in our online community that she was sorry and that she couldn’t do it anymore.

That was the last any of us heard from her. This was traumatic for so many reasons, and it wasn’t going to be the first suicide among us, but it was the first that stirred up a huge part of the place we called home. A place we felt safe in. A place where we thought we were able to protect each other from the outside world. Many among us tried to reach out and let her know that we were there, even the people who had just moments earlier been with her in the same physical space. They could not reach her anymore. We all watched their tearful pleas for her to come back, for her to just let them know where she was.

Just like I walked out the door tonight, she had just walked out the door. Our reasons weren’t the same, and our lives weren’t the same, I’m not even going to pretend that our lives were anything alike, but that feeling inside of us to just get out… I think that deep need to escape was the same, and if not it was at least similar.

When I left the house tonight, it wasn’t unprompted, and I wasn’t just going for an evening walk, but I also knew that I wasn’t going out to kill myself. Even though the walk itself, while trying to make sure I did not fall for any of the urges to throw myself in front of a moving vehicle or just keep walking until my feet bled, most definite felt like playing life on hardmode. Like Dude, have you even played Life on HardMode if you haven’t actively tried to NOT kill yourself while out walking on a dark rainy evening? No, my evening had, all things considered been great. I had just been to a fantastic (online) party for a friend who just launched their new book.

I had however arrived late to this party, because instead of getting dinner ready in time, I had to sit down to write a letter to rein in my emotions, emotions that I can only explain as a severe case of Rejection Sensitive Dysphoria (RSD) to things I will not get into here. The letter had started as one thing, I’m not sure what, and I wrote it in a compose window in my email, so I must have intended to send it to someone. It soon warped into something else, something much more painful: A letter to my partner. Saying goodbye.

In what I can only call a cruel twist of irony, I realized that I had just written a suicide letter. To be more precise, I had written a suicide letter in order to not kill myself. Tonight I had used my years of experiences, and the countless number of practice opportunities which had honed my skill at not killing myself. So, I proceeded to pour everything I was feeling into this letter, because I did not want to kill myself, because I did not want to just run away and never come back. Even though my insides were screaming at me, at the top of their lungs, that I should do just that. Screaming at me that no one cares about me, and several horrible things about my relationship with my partner (I’m sure we all know how these internal monologues go), I kept writing until I felt ready to get started with dinner, and join my friend’s party!

I quipped about it online, and no one responded to it. To be fair, I did post it only to my little corner of this particular sphere of the internet, and also only to people who follow me, which is an even smaller subset of people. It was hidden behind proper content/trigger warnings, so if no one wanted to see it they didn’t have to. I’m sure it was filtered by some people too for mentioning suicide. So, let me be vulnerable for a moment:

“That awkward moment when you write a suicide letter to stop spiraling and talk yourself out of any suicidal ideation… At least I got my coping strategies 👍. I’ll be calling the GP tomorrow, or emergency psych. One of those things. I’ll be okay, and I’m going to take better care of myself. I’m safe, just hurting a lot inside.”; “just putting on a brave face. as always.”; “or I wont, because I’ll be pretending that I’m perfectly fine.” “always the fucking masks”
When I wrote this I knew I was being too vulnerable, so naturally I hid it with as many layers as possible. The CW tag, the Local Only, and then Private Post. This meant fever people would see it, and I could get more upset that no one checked in with me. Even though I clearly said “I’m okay, I’m safe”.

I put on my mask, and continued to enjoy my evening with my friends and I had a great time. I guess it’s a dichotomy, something we don’t talk about. We can have a sincere, genuine and fantastical evening with friends where we’re happy, and feel safe, while also dealing with a lot of inner turmoil. While I was masking, I was also being there for my friend on their big night, which was as important to myself as it was to them. I do fear that when they read this, they’ll be horrified. I couldn’t title this with all the people who shouldn’t read it, so I’m sorry if you are reading this. I need you to know this: That hour I spent with you and the others wasn’t about me, it was about you and your fantastic book, and the incredible world you have crafted. And it was a pleasure to be there.

After that hour with friends, old and new, I felt okay. I felt much better and calmer. Not as serene as I do today (this part is being written the following day). I thought I had everything reined in, and under control. All I had managed to do was to calm myself down enough to cook dinner, and distract myself with a fantastical game with fantastic friends, and just watch everyone happily interact with each other. Distractions are good and healthy. They can be helpful, and they can keep us alive.

Before long, another thing hit me, and it hit me hard. It was like a truck of emotions came out of nowhere, and just slammed into me. My RSD interpreted the trigger as the most horrific betrayal, disregard and just plain neglect. I was mad. I wanted payback. I wanted to scream. I wanted to smash my plates, the plates that I treasure so much because to me they are a symbol of my first true independence. I wanted to destroy them. I felt trapped, and I felt, I guess knew, that I had to keep calm and carry on. Like I always do.

Except, as I have just described, I didn’t want to keep calm. I wanted to scream, but I couldn’t. I couldn’t let myself get any of these emotions out. That’s when I just put on my hoodie and walked out the house, without my phone. Because at least this way I could walk off some of it. And maybe scream into the dark void which is the outdoors in the early fall evening, in England.

We are back to where we began, the beginning of this story, but not the end of my story. I think it could have been an end. There has been many times in my life that could have been my last, both intentional and unintentional. And that’s okay.

I can’t tell you how to learn to “manage” these feelings of overwhelm. The feelings that will rush over you, like a wave, as if with the intent to crush you against the cliff-face. I can’t tell you how to get there, how to survive the next wave. I only want to remind you that you can. Even after the darkest night, the sun will rise again. It may rise to orange ominous clouds, or it may just rise to another overcast day, especially here in England, that will be just as boring as the days before it.

I think, the greatest lesson I ever learnt was to see tears as a release valve, of pressure building up inside. A release of stress. Stress can be caused by a lot of things, and if we do not flush it out of our system (metaphor, please don’t try to cleanse yourself of toxins) it can cause severe damage. I was tempted to say irreparable damage, but I shall refrain. Because while it may seem irreparable, that may just be because we need to build something completely new. If you are in a position where you are unable to cry, remember that that’s okay too. There are other ways to find release, that aren’t the ones everyone else around you will wish you hadn’t done.

In your hour of need, remember that you have survived everything thrown at you up until today, and you can, heck, you will survive again. Know your outs, your emergency exit, your emergency contacts. Be it a friend who has promised that you can call them whenever, be it your National Suicide Hotline, the Samaritans (thank you, Erik), for you to walk into the ER/A&E, or whatever is available to you where you live.

Even when all else fails, just allow yourself to keep crying, and cry yourself to exhaustion, watch your favorite movie on repeat, and either fall asleep or have something to eat. And remember, maybe tomorrow will be better.


This post was originally published on Medium, if you liked it it would help me out if you also clap over there.

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Keep trying to get my life back together

I have been struggling, and I’ve gone from struggling to doing great and it’s been a mess.

@kinkymal

##ADHD meds update. Day 3 on a higher dose.

♬ original sound – maloki

I’ve over the past few months been doing a lot of my updates on TikTok instead of in written form, and about a month ago I got diagnosed with ADHD finally, and put on medication. Unfortunately when going up in dose after 2 weeks on it, I encountered a lot of issues, and I had to deal with that for past week and a half. Today I finally got back on the right level again and will hopefully start feeling better and be able to do things again.

It’s unfortunate because I’d just started to edit video, and giving myself permission to edit and enjoyed it, then the meds happened and my focus went elsewhere. So the RimWorld series isn’t live yet, but I can start again this coming week.

I don’t know when I’ll have another appointment with the ADHD services, so I can get my meds regularly prescribed, but I probably need to call them next week.

I keep finding myself here, where I think I’m getting my life back, and myself back together, and then something happens and it’s a lot harder to deal with it again. And it’s a bit of a pain. It’s hurting me on the inside, because I want to have a life, I want to reclaim the life I’ve lost over the past 15 years, and I want to start living better. Better as in, being able to do things, not as in “I must.be.good.healthy.and.pure”.

I have some grief I need to process, of the life I lost. Of my childhood and everything around that. And I need to allow myself to take that time to process it. It’s gonna be a pain, but I think we can do it.

I want to put things into written word as well as the video shorts. We’ll see if I can balance it, I’m hoping to start using my project Bullet Journal notebook now, which will be specifically focusing on any projects I work on, and allowing myself a better over view of things I want to get done.

This post is a mess, but I’m a mess.

Also, you can head by my other blog to see the posts I’ve been sharing about my first experience with Minecraft.


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Health & Diet culture

Within the first two months of mine and my partner’s relationship, I ended up with some severe stomach issues. I was nauseous and just feeling completely drained most of the time, especially after I ate. And if it wasn’t that it was severe bouts with IBS. It took me a while to understand that it had to do with my stomach as such, and I did see a doctor about it after another few months.

By the time I got to see the doctor, I’d already started to figure out things to help me feel less horrible, and I remember this question quite vividly: “Have you lost a lot of weight recently?”, and my response was “Yes, but it was intentional, so I don’t think it’s a big deal”, and my doctor took this answer as “there’s no underlying cause that’s making it hard for you to eat, so you’re losing a lot of weight”. When in truth, wasn’t me limiting myself in what I ate, so I wouldn’t feel sick all the time, my health causing me to lose weight?

When I think back on it now it seems more than clear, obvious even, that that was the case. I was clearly not healthy, my stomach problems were causing me to lose weight, but I was proud of losing weight at the time. I was like “omg, finally I’m able to lose weight, and look it’s so easy, you just eat less”. When in reality, I couldn’t eat more. If I ate more I couldn’t do anything, I couldn’t study, and being at university at the time meant that I needed to be able to study. I couldn’t do chores, living in student housing and sharing a kitchen with people meant I needed to be able to do chores. So the best option was to cut out all the things I couldn’t eat, that made my stomach issues worse.

Long term I also didn’t continue taking the stomach meds from my doctor, because they were exasperating the underlying problems, by unbalancing my stomach acids even more. Can I prove this? No, but it seems to be fairly common knowledge, these days, that omeprazole and lansoprazole has that effect. There is a long-term negative to being treated.

Would a doctor tell me to drink a glass of apple cider vinegar (diluted appropriately ofc) in the morning every day? Would a doctor be able tell me that an apple a day, or as an inbetween snack, not even a whole one, but just cut in tiny pieces and eating them when you can/need to, will actually help you feel better long term? One doctor was able to tell me that bananas could help with my stomach issues, specifically green ones, before i take my meds in the morning. And you know what, it did help. And the apples and apple cider vinegar did too. They are still my go to. And overcooked rice with overcooked vegetables.

Yet, I find myself today, thinking about that other doctor, who took me at my word that me losing weight was intentional. And therefore there didn’t seem to be anything clearly wrong with me, so we didn’t continue investigating my issues, and I still have them today, 7 years later. I never got any diagnosis.

The issues come and go, and if I get back on my “bad food” for too long, or too many times in a week, often I’ll think “Huh, I have been drinking a lot of coffee lately, and I feel fine, odd. let’s take another cup of coffee”, instead of not taking that next cup.

Yes, I’m sharing this because I’m struggling with my stomach again, and being reminded about me eating less. Back then, with me not having money to cover food, eating less was a blessing in so many ways, and the fact that I also lost weight at the same time. I mean that’s the trifecta right?

I have a fucked up relationship with food, disordered eating is a daily thing. Battling the world of diet culture is fucking heck. Being body positive while also wanting to lose weight, or needing to eat less, is hard. How do I reconcile those things together? In ways they seem like antonyms.

Health at every size. Maybe health looks different for different people. Maybe in some cases health means eating less, and in some cases it means eating more. Maybe re-balancing yourself, and finding what works for you and your body is what we need to think about.

And as a thank you, while writing this post my stomach sent me to the bathroom with IBS (I realize it’s not the stomach, with Irritable Bowel Syndrome, but it always feels like it just as well could’ve been). Probably because one of the things I just had for dinner set me off. Thanks body.


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Alternatively, check out my support page for more info.

Took a break

It wasn’t an extensive break and most people probably didn’t notice, considering how the past year has been overall. Nonetheless I took a break in April. Mostly from planning, and especially from the bullet journal.

There are parts of it that doesn’t jell well with me, but most of it is fine. This means I get a chance to refine my own experience.

You may have read my previous post about starting to use bullet journaling. So today I wanted to talk about another reason why it’s so good for me:

I could take this break, and it wouldn’t matter, I wouldn’t waste pages. I wouldn’t lose a whole month in pages, because I didn’t use it. And I can just pick back up where I left off.

Considering that I needed a break, to just breathe and take care of myself for a month, I’m so happy I had started this journey. And I could let myself do it without worrying, and I knew that come May I was going to start again, and it wasn’t a chore to. I just started immediately on May 1.

That’s really it. If for nothing else, you can use a bullet journal to be allowed to take breaks when needed. And it will still be there, ready for you when you need it.

I also felt like I had internalized a lot of the process, so I did still get a lot of stuff done that I wanted to get done in April. Which is just bonus points tbh.

Grief: A love letter

I still love you. And I miss you. I dreamt about you last night, and in the dream we found our way back to each other, even though my awake self know that will never happen. So naturally when I woke up I was incredibly sad about it, and writing this I’m crying about it.

I cherish the time we spent together, the lessons you taught me about people, life, and the treatment I deserved. You taught me that I deserved good people.

We weren’t supposed to love each other, it wasn’t in the agreement. But so quickly we both did.

We comforted each other in our bubble. Albeit temporary, it felt like it would last forever. Why would something so good ever end?

Back then it didn’t really end in a clear way, maybe that’s why you’re still so close to my heart. Why I still miss you when I think about you.

The definite end happened 1.5 years ago, and I don’t think I processed it. My life was so busy, so renewed full of energy, and I was reaching out to a lot of people I’d not been able to talk with in many years. You were one of them.

I could speculate on my own faults, but you asked me not to. I never took the time to grieve losing you, simply because my life was so busy then.

So this dream, this specific one, where we recognized that we’d not been able to reconnect for a while hit me hard. My dreams are often very vivid, and you were with me, we were together again, and when I woke up I lost you all over again.

Would it have been different if I hadn’t moved away 10 years ago? Or would it just have ended earlier in a much more painful way?

On our first and only anniversary, you said something wonderful to me. And that was that you wanted us to be able to keep our anniversary as a celebration of our friendship, years down the line.

Today I don’t even remember what date it was. Was it January? February? March? I know it was early in the year.

I know our relationship developed into more than it was supposed to, and it was hidden from most people. Some people even tried to protect you from me at gatherings, because they didn’t know we were together. They didn’t know how good we were together. Something I can both laugh and cry about today.

I still love you, and I miss you. And today I grieve.

I didn’t understand until a day later, as I’m finishing writing this and as I was online reading other things about grief. Grief is love, and I love you, so I grieve that I’ll probably never see you again.

Yesterday I kept fearing that something happened, this immense overwhelming feeling that you weren’t okay. But knowing that I shouldn’t reach out to you, it just became so intense. I couldn’t stop crying, and I didn’t know why. I didn’t understand yesterday, but today I know.

I’m grieving. Because I loved you, because you’ll always be in my heart. I’m grieving because I know we both think of our time together with love and cherish it. Cherish the lessons we both learnt about ourselves at that time. I grieve because seeing you again, reaching out to you, would risk tarnishing those memories.

I don’t think about you all the time, it’s not that kind of love. But I think about you, and hope you’re well and all the people around you are well too.

Our paths crossed for a few years, and it brought something we both needed to our lives, and I will always remember that.

Thank you. For everything.

Love, Marie.


Header image: “Sjö” by Magnus MWW is licensed under CC BY-SA 2.0