Posts Tagged ‘depression’

I watched a special on HBO while stuck in my house due to an ice storm this weekend. It was called “Every Brilliant Thing”, and it’s definitely worth checking out. But, it inspired me. I want to start making a list of every brilliant thing to me in life. Everything that makes life worth living.

It’s no secret that I struggle with depression. I have for over half of my life, now. Usually, I manage just fine. But some days, it gets to me. It’s like a poison spreading through my system, leaving me weak. I can’t find the light, and that’s my biggest problem in that state of mind: I’m lost in the darkness, and cannot find the good to pull me out of it.

So, I’m giving myself a list of things. Things to read and remember what makes me even slightly happy. I’m giving myself a way out of the darkness.

Let’s start by cheating a bit with my list of things I was thankful for a few posts ago:

1.) Movie nights with someone you love.

2.) My Batman collection. 

3.) My nieces. 

4.) Fur babies. 

5.) Feeling inspired. 

6.) Productive nights of insomnia. 

7.) Feeling accomplished. 

8.) Qdoba nacho dates with my  best friend. 

9.) The hunt for collection things.

10.) Long calls with your favorite person.

11.) Clear nights with the moon and stars shining bright.

12.) Hoodie weather.

13.) Nature walks / Hikes.

14.) Road trips with good company and good music.

15.) The exhilaration on your favorite rides.

16.) Doing something kind for someone else, and knowing they appreciated it. 

17.) Knowing this was the first December in a few years I didn’t have a surgery scheduled.

18.) The catalyst of meeting Kevin Smith a little over one year ago. 

19.) Filling up a box of comics.

20.) The excitement of somewhere new.

21.) Being so happy that I can’t stop the big, dorky grins. 

22.) Painting with music blaring days. 

23.) Adventure. 

24.) Chinese food. 

25.) Supporting the dreams and projects of others.

26.) The Bat Force / Bat Force Radio while working on my collection. 

27.) Naps.

28.) My fandoms.

29. ) People equally passionate about the same things I am.

30.) Good memories.

31.) Cards Against Humanity nights. 

32.) My closest friends.

33.) My BEST friend.

34.) Everything about a certain someone. 

Now, let’s add a few more on, to make it a proper new post:

35.) Meeting your heroes.

36.) Comic Cons

 37.) Finding new movies you absolutely love.

38.) The song that becomes Our Song

39.) Comfy socks.

40.) The first day of feeling better after being sick.

41.) Peanut Butter M&Ms 

42.) Art days after school in high school, working on projects with people that meant the world to me.

43.) Hot apple cider in my Ouija mug when I’m sick.

44.) Good, long conversations.

45.) Dressing up as Harley Quinn

46.) Poetry

47.) The work of Charles Bukowski

48.) Unexpected gifts of things you want, but didn’t ask for.

49.) When the person you fall in love with, falls in love with you.

50.) Happy dances.

There we have it. My first 50 things. I hope to read through them when I’m down, and then add to them, and hopefully use this tool to pull myself back out of the grips of depression.

~Angel

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keepgoing

It’s always a curious thing, letting go of some aspects of your life in order to embrace other things that feel more important. The seed is planted, and you’re ready to watch it bloom. You’ve been watering it and giving it all of your love. Sometimes, something amazing blooms. Other times, nothing happens. You’re left alone in the dirt, waiting for something to come from nothing, and having no idea whether it will become everything you hoped for, or leave you as you are – alone in the dirt.

I started down a path a few months ago, terrified and unsure of myself, with hopes of pushing myself toward something better. I’ve been hard at work on Wandering NerdGirl. I’ve been working on my health. Trying to spend more time with friends. I’ve been working on things I’ve never done before. Spending time with my nieces and going to Six Flags. And all of these things can bring me some temporary comfort, and the occasional feeling of accomplishment.

But you know what I haven’t been doing lately? Writing – working on new stuff, or editing, or finishing Work-in-Progress stuff. I haven’t been taking any pictures. I haven’t been drawing or painting. And not doing these particular things is really waging war on my brain.

I just came home a week ago from a last minute trip, mostly just an adventure, with a bit of excitement. I was on top of the world when I was coming home. I felt decent for the first time in a while emotionally. But no sooner than I returned to normal life, did Life decide to step in and remind me that I was coming back to normal, and needed to lose that happy, euphoric feeling. Don’t forget who you really are, it seemed to say this week.

However, I am fighting back. I have full intention to get some writing and hopefully some drawing done this weekend. I will not allow myself to keep feeling like a failure.

More soon.

~Angel

“Are you searching for purpose?
Then write something, yeah it might be worthless
Then paint something then, it might be wordless
Pointless curses, nonsense verses
You’ll see purpose start to surface
No one else is dealing with your demons
Meaning maybe defeating them
Could be the beginning of your meaning, friend.”

I’ve been spending a lot of time trying to figure myself out. I know what I want. I know that if I can work myself hard enough, I can have it.

But it’s been a little easier said than done when your body decides to be twice as tired as it typically is, and hurting in nice fun new ways that make doing pretty much anything impossible. Plus, I got hooked on Marvel’s Jessica Jones on Netflix, and had to get the first season binge watched in less than a week.

 Next week I’m supposed to see my Rheumatologist and it’s stressing me out quite a bit more than I’d like. I’ve had so much happen, so much disease manifestation and progression, that I don’t want to go hear whatever she will say about it all.

Plus there have been loads of other stressful things going on, and all around I sort of feel like I’m unraveling.

comeonkid

But, I’m still going forward with the things I want. I’m still trying to learn new things so I can make new things. I’m trying to get my body to a point it isn’t having a meltdown. I’m trying to keep up with Wandering NerdGirl and make it into everything I wanted it to be.

Mainly, I’ve been needing to write, which comes easier to me on some days than others. I was a writing machine, cranking out posts and chapters and everything for a little while. Then BOOM – I slow waaaay down. I’m trying to get myself back into the swing of things, but it’s been a struggle. I used to, before sickness and stress and life drained me of everything, be able to write write write until the only thing slowing me down was hand cramps. I’d fill notebooks and print hundreds and hundreds of pages. I wrote during and between classes in High School, and when I’d get home from school. When I was in college, I wrote before classes and between them, and even tried to sneak in some writing during classes. I used to write on work lunch breaks. I spent summers at my desk, writing for hours on end.

But then stress took over. And from stress sprung illness, a mighty beast even for me to deal with.

I’m trying, though. I’m trying as hard as I can to find a way to get everything I want from life. I’m trying to get the words to come even when I can’t form a coherent thought because the brain fog is so heavy. I’m trying to give myself things that help put me back into my head correctly. It just takes time.

I finished a chapter of my current WIP the other day, and I’m hoping to finish a chapter or two this weekend if I can push myself enough. We will see.

~Angel

deadbeforethedayisgone

I know it’s been a while since I have posted anything, and there’s a variety of reasons. I’ve been dealing with a lot lately. Changes, for better or worse. A torrent of good news and bad news leaving me overwhelmed. Luckily, I’ve been doing the opposite of what I typically do (which is wallowing in my own self pity while accomplishing nothing in the process.) I’ve been trying to focus on what’s best for me – for my health, for my happiness, for my future. I’ve been keeping a decent writing schedule and working on a new rough draft. I’m trying to nurture my body back into a state that I can properly function and not be quite so frequently sick. I’ve been trying to make sure that I do things to make Angel happy, instead of everyone else coming first 100% of the time.

But you know what sucks about this? I’m not used to it. And since I’m not used to treating myself a little better, it’s resulted in a mental assault on myself. Because I feel like I’m being selfish, and I don’t deserve to want what is best for me. I keep trying to push through, because I know I’m getting close to having my old self back – the version of myself that’s less broken, less corrupted. The Self I need right now. But it’s breaking through that barrier that’s tearing me apart. I know I’m almost there, but I know I’m fighting myself on it. I want to give up. Today was especially rough.

I started to doubt myself. How will I ever make it? In life? Against illness? How will I ever publish a novel? Why should I think I’ll ever sell another piece of art or get paid for another photo shoot? I’m not strong enough for this. It kept pounding in my head with each heart beat: I can’t do this.

Suddenly, I didn’t know if I could go on, period. Or if I did, if I could keep going with my life. Maybe it was time to give up on my childish dreams and finally grow up and join reality.

Until, I read this quote earlier:

 “Like a dandelion up through the pavement, I persist.” – Wentworth Miller (please see his Facebook post here)

That post, by a man I already admire, really struck me. But that quote? Oh, that quote. That fueled the fires inside me.

So my goal? Stick to my writing schedule. Crank out chapter after chapter. Continue to work hard at the things I want. Because I persist, despite all the things that want to stop me.

This is the year I get to take control back. It hasn’t been easy, and I’m sure it won’t get easier any time soon. But I will persist.

Expect more soon.

~Angel

bowie

“I know I’ll wither, so peel away the bark
Because nothing grows when it is dark
In spite of all my fears, I can see it all so clear”

So within a week, I’ve had some health ups and downs.

Last Monday, I had my follow up for my biopsy. Good news! It showed no cancer! I have other issues to tackle with why I had to have the biopsy, but at least cancer is currently off the table.

This Monday, I found out I have Trigeminal Neuralgia.

I had a very BAD end of last week, and then HORRIBLE weekend, and by Monday I knew I needed to see my doctor. I wasn’t sleeping (and am still not sleeping) because of how intense the pain is. To give you an idea of the pain levels: this disease is nicknamed the Suicide Disease, because people would kill themselves from the pain before anyone figured out what to do to treat this pain. It was hard to describe, but I read where someone described it as a combination of the worst migraine of your life and the worst toothache. I can agree and elaborate on this: The misery of the worst migraine, the insanity you feel with the worst toothache, and the feeling of someone using a hammer to break your jaw. That. That sounds like an adequate description.

I’ve built up a decent pain tolerance over the years, somehow. And this shatters that tolerance and leaves me curled up and miserable.

And, you guessed it – this is a manifestation of my disease. Sjogren’s decided to welcome more unpleasantness into my life.

But here’s the thing… Obviously, it hurts and it sucks. Yet, what seems to be bothering me even more, is that this is disease progression. This is me still not having anything under control. And it’s just a reminder of what my doctors have said:

There is nothing we can do to stop the progression.

You’re a ticking time bomb just waiting to go off.

I’ve had to explain to everyone in my life time and time again that I’ve been wanting to travel and do so much these past few years, because I want to do it while I can. There may come a day that I can’t handle my go-go-go travel style. What’s worse now, though, is that this day may be coming a lot sooner than I anticipated. My last three trips, I’ve had something come up health wise. Obviously, Reno was the worst. This all scares me.

I know my disease is still young and still evolving, but it’s so strong so early on. I can’t imagine what full-force will be like.

It’ll be a fun follow-up with my Rheumatologist, I’m sure.

But, I won’t let this stop me. I have plans, and goals, and dreams. Despite the brain fog, I will write. Despite the pain, I will progress. Despite exhaustion, I will travel. Until it is absolutely impossible, I will continue. Even though it feels like I am withering, I won’t give up. It isn’t in my nature.

Hopefully soon I’ll have more updates that don’t involve my body being stupid.

Hopefully.

~Angel

light

I’m not a single bit surprised that 2016 is off to a rough start. It’s almost a tradition at this point: go into it hopeful, get knocked down so fast my head spins. Because by “rough start”, I mean that it has been made very clear to me that this coming year will make or break me. And I refuse to let it break me, no matter how hard everything is trying to. All good news fades. All steps forward seem like they haven’t mattered. I am no closer to anything than I was before. If anything, I’ve fallen back several steps.

But, I push forward:

+ I’m working hard at my Wandering NerdGirl blog, in hopes that my nerdy adventures can be more productive. Cons, Orlando, other nerd-tastic events… I’m on it.

+ I’m writing again, period. I was so down and depressed Tuesday, reading about the market and what agents and publishers don’t want right now, blah blah. I’m a very critical person on myself, so of course I instantly decide everything I write is garbage and I should give up. But for some reason, one of my favorite story ideas popped into my brain, and I had a lot of interesting new ideas for it. Since it hasn’t actually been written yet, it will be a good exercise in writing again. I’ve spent so long in editing and rewriting hell, I haven’t had much time or opportunity for new creation. I’ve mostly been jotting notes down and what not, or writing a few specific scenes that some to mind. But as soon as I get my thoughts together, I’m running with it. I’ll hammer out my first draft, as intimidating as that feels right now. I won’t lose my dream. I’m going to write this book for me, and see where that takes me.

+ I have been drawing. Well, the last day or two I haven’t been. But I will excuse that because I have started a huge, new painting of Poe Dameron’s helmet from Star Wars: The Force Awakens. It’s all pretty exciting, considering I was very close to just getting rid of a lot of my art stuff to save space.

+ I have my eyes on new projects. Bigger projects. More projects. I have plans to go beyond what I have done and make something new all the time. New shoots, new types of projects, new ideas. It’s all very vague to you guys right now because I’m not jumping in with both feet just yet, so there isn’t much information to share. Just cross your fingers that I make the time to pull it all off.

+ My collection is growing. My collection is a tiny beast, but it is my tiny beast. I know I’ve been slacking on the Collection Haul posts, and if you’d like to see them again, I could start back up this month or in February. There have been quite a few additions. And as stupid or trivial or whatever it sounds, one of my goals for the year is to really build my collection up. I take great pride in my Batman stuff. Someday I’ll have a massive assortment of various Batman items properly displayed.  For now, it steadily grows.

+ I’ve been trying to figure out how to get back to college, and exactly what I want to do when I get back. I was going to start again Fall 2015 but my financial aid decided to be complicated. So maybe Fall 2016 or Spring 2017. Who knows. Going back genuinely frightens me at this point. But I would still like to try.

 

So, you have a basic rundown of my game plan for the year. Obviously, subject to change. But hopefully, this year I rise from the ashes and become closer to where I was before.

 

~Angel

be soft

Yesterday was bad. Yesterday was overwhelming, and scary, and I’m not sure how I made it out with my sanity. But, nothing of real note happened yesterday. No particular thing set off two very bad panic attacks. Instead, a build up of frustration and stress and the immense feeling of being absolutely powerless all melded together to leave me shaken.

I am a strong person, but I cannot always hold my head above the water. Sometimes, it’s all too much. Sometimes, I start drowning.

But I am also determined to survive, despite everything else. I have come too far to let myself fall apart now.

 

Between health, and life, and the world, and trying to find a balance between who I am now, and who I want to be, I am not coping well. Things don’t work out as we plan, and I completely understand this reality. But it doesn’t mean I have to accept that this is it. I’m torn between settling down and chasing my dreams with reckless abandon. It’s hard to do both at the same time unless you’ve already reached some success. And, unfortunately for me, I am not nearly as close to success as I used to be.

I worry for the world. I worry about people being absolute assholes to each other. I try to make a difference, but I can’t do it alone. You can read more on my post Give the World Your Best – because it’s pointless for me to go into the same details all over again for everyone that’s already read it.

I have three weeks until my procedure, and it’s making me a nervous wreck.

Yet, I have so much to make me feel better and distract myself so I don’t have to deal with anymore negative energy. The week after my procedure, I’m going to see Wicked at the Fox, and going to the Fox is one of my faaavorite things. This weekend, I’m going to Reno for a con. Next week is Thanksgiving so I’ll have some much needed down time from work. I’m sure there’s more I’m not thinking of. But I’m still scared and worried. I still feel like time is passing sooooo slowly.

Everything is making me feel like I have no control, and I don’t want to feel that way anymore.

So, I’m devising a plan. I am moving toward changes.

More will be coming soon.

~Angel