Not A Suicide Note

These are the thoughts of someone close to the edges one summers night.

I thought that this would turn into a suicide note. But it’s not and it won’t be. There’s just no one I want to directly tell. Better off alone. I can’t get hurt, or hurt anyone else if I am alone. Only strangers can get me here. But there are houses behind me, a beach and sea in front of me. Its public enough for me not to be afraid. Quiet enough to feel alone.

This is where I want to stay. Staring at the sea, for a moment things seem peaceful. I can forgot everything here. Quiet places are where I want to be, away from everything, another world. This is how I want to be. I’d be happier, no more anger.

But I can’t stay here forever.

I want to know how to change my mood. How can I flip a switch and go back to being happy. How do I do that when everything scares me? I get nervous just meeting up with friends. How do I calm myself and let go of the fear? All I see is how different I am to everyone else. I’m too independent but too scared to drift too far alone.

I want to run away. I don’t know where I’d go. I only want to get away for a while. I’d come back eventually.  Just need to disappear for a bit. Don’t want to tell anyone but don’t want them to worry. Why would they worry? Who would care?

If it wasn’t so cold the sea would look inviting. Id disappear under its waves.

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I used to write every day. Now I struggle to remember the last time I wrote anything. I never write anymore. I lost my passion, my hobby.

I’m just a wonderer, looking for something more. I want it all, I want to live. Give me a life worth living or let me pass.

Put me in a coma so I don’t have to deal with it. So I forget how dull my life is. Too many tragic moments mixed with brief moments of joy.im tired of my routine.

Escaping is the only way out sometimes. Can’t breathe. Suffocated everywhere I go. The smallest things annoy me.

I am still looking at the sea and all I can think of is how I could jump into it and not come back up again.

Getting rid of my pain won’t work. That pain will only pass on to others. To those who may be hurt by my loss. I cannot be selfish like that. I’d never do it, but I always think about it.

Not happy, not sad. I feel barely anything. I’ll quit before I fail, I’ll fail before I get rejected. Rejections is the worst, I refuse to let myself feel that again.

These were the thoughts of someone close to the edge one summers night.

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What Depression Feels Like

To most people the word depression conjures up just one single word, sadness. They believe that there is always a reason for this sadness. That there must be a reason. How could you feel sad when there’s nothing in particular to upset you?

But it isn’t just sadness, and there is rarely a solid reason for it.

Truthfully I have found that the majority of my depression consists of a serious lack of motivation to do anything and a paralysing numb feeling.  I am so wound up in my own little bubble that the outside world no longer means anything to me. I couldn’t care less, about anything or anyone. I become selfish, wanting only to do things that will benefit myself. Only talking when I deem it worthwhile. I isolate myself so I don’t have to deal with anyone else problems. Because you see I simply cannot deal with my own.

Most of the time I feel nothing. Not sadness, not hurt or pain. Just nothing. I’ll fake smiles and laughter, I’ll put on a show, pretend to be happy. I can’t remember the last time I felt truly happy.

On my worst days it is almost impossible to do anything at all. I am hopeless, lost in myself. I sit and mooch around all day then I feel even worse because I’ve done nothing. But I can’t do anything because what’s the point? I won’t achieve anything I won’t get anything out of it. But I need to do something to distract me from these thoughts. My inner conflict is a constant battle between I can’t do anything and I need to do something. Most of the time cant wins.

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Right now, in the present day, I do not have a solid justifiable reason to be depressed. It’s worse now because I don’t understand why it’s with me. For so long I thought that it was just the way I am. This is my personality. But going through these up and down phases isn’t the way personality works. Weeks of numbness isn’t part of me, it only follows me.

With this depression comes an intense self-loathing. I despise myself. I am disgusting, a horrible insecure mess of a person. No wonder I am so alone, I deserve to be alone. No matter how many compliments I might get, I will never believe any of it. But one negative word about me and im all over it, I’ll amplify it, ponder on it. That is what I will always remember. The negatives stays with me, the positive is seen as lies.

Then after all that I feel guilt. Guilt for ignoring everyone, for isolating myself and refusing help when it’s offered. Pure guilt for just feeling this way.

This is just a small glimpse of what depression is like. Its diffcutl to explain something when I don’t even understand it myself. Its frustrating when I try to tell people and they don’t even try to understand.

People who have never been through it will never understand. They cannot possibly comprehend the way our mind thinks. They think we are just sad.

I just want you to understand.

I need you to try.

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Living with anxiety and depression

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I have lived with anxiety and depression my entire life. For as long as I can remember I have been this way.

I am sad or numb for days, weeks, months at a time. I have no reason to be upset. No one has died, no one is sick; I have friends and family that care. But when that darkness grips me I cannot release it.

No motivations for anything, can’t read, can’t write, can’t watch anything. It’s over sleeping and never wanting to wake up because sleeping is like being dead but without the commitment.

I’ll become quiet among friends. I’ll make excuses not to see them, won’t contact the outside word. Remain in a persona bubble.

If I am alone, no one can hurt me. There will be no bad news, no arguments, no drama.

That feeling comes in phases. I’ll be content for ages, happy almost, but it always returns.

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The anxious panicking is present almost every day.

The most common way to describe it is this: that feeling when you miss a step walking down the stairs, for a moment you think you’re going to fall and break a leg. Now remember that that feeling, intensify it and make it a constant feeling. That my friend is what anxiety feels like.

It’s over planning so you don’t do something wrong.  It’s holding on to your rubbish in class so you don’t have to walk over to the bin in front of everyone in case you trip. It’s not inviting friends round because you don’t think they like your house or you. It’s never messaging first because you feel like you’re bothering them.  Never answering the phone in case its bad news.  Avoiding one on one situations and busy places. The constant worry that something bad will happen if you leave the house. The inability to do things last minute because your busy doing nothing. Nothing is safe. Nothing will go wrong; it won’t be my fault if it’s nothing.

So why am I diagnosed with this? Surely if this is how I’ve always been than this is just the way I am. It’s part of my personality. This is who I am.

Wrong.

It is not ‘normal’ to be afraid to answer the phone. It is not ‘normal’ to feel uncomfortable in the company of others who are not like minded as myself. It is not ‘normal’ to feel that the people laughing across the street are in fact laughing at me.

Because answering the phone doesn’t mean it’s going to be bad news, I’m not going to get hurt by talking on it. There is no need to feel as if I am being judged by others or that I do not fit in. I do not need to fit in everywhere; I do not need another’s approval. The people laughing are doing so because they said something funny, not because they were looking at me.

The thing is I fully know that my anxious and insecure ways are totally irrational. My fears should not control me. But they do.

I have no reason, no logic, no traumatic childhood experience to trigger these fears.

It’s all chemical reactions, an imbalance in hormones combined with a negative outlook on life.

Change the way you think. Stop being in denial. This is not normal. This is not a healthy way of life.

happiness is a state of mind

Your happiness is a state of mind. It’s your thoughts, your choices, your words that put you into situations. You can’t expect everything to just magically fix itself, it doesn’t work that way. When you truly hate yourself, hate the way you look, the person you are. Then you’re the only one that can change that, do something about it. because nothing good will ever happen if you just sit around dwelling on those demon thoughts. I’ve been there. I’ve wanted to hurt myself so many times. I thought about killing myself. Admittedly I still do sometimes. But that’s in my head. No one else can get it. They can’t fix me, I’m not broken. But if I let myself continue to dwell on those demon ideas, then there’s no one around to stop me from doing something stupid.

You have to make yourself stop. Be positive. Distract yourself and keep busy. Do the things you love. Surround yourself with friends. Good friends who can listen to your rants and distract you from the dark things in life. But pile all your problems onto them and expect them to come up with words of wisdom every time you send a long depressive Facebook rant. There’s only so much they can do.

Why am I writing all this? Why am I sharing shit on the internet that not many people know? Because I know too many people who won’t talk about it. Too many people who hide everything away until it all comes out at once. They end up hurting everyone else. Been there too. If you let it build up too much you end up with this mental house of anger in your head, and one day someone will say something that triggers the door of that house to fling open. And BAM you’re a spontaneous emotional wreck lashing out on everything around you.

So this may sound odd but I feel that throughout my almost 21 years of life I have had several different versions of ‘me’. So from birth up until the start of secondary school is the childhood phase, where I don’t remember much but hell do I miss it. Then there’s the awkward preteen phase with the whole ‘I don’t fit in where do I belong?’. But then I started fixated on staying connected with my childhood and dreading growing up. Like seriously I used to think about it every day then I’d put on a Disney film and cry myself to sleep. Every. Single. Night. Then in 2007 I lost a dog and both grandmothers. Then I went into what seemed like an endless spiral in the dark abyss. Nothing felt right, there was nothing that could make me happy. I have eczema and used to continuously scratch my legs till they bled, I had it on my eye lids and the inner joints of my elbows. I couldn’t stop it. I just thought about all the negativity and I couldn’t help myself. I deserved to bleed. I deserved the pain.

I guess the point I’m trying to make is that I wouldn’t allow myself to be positive. The shit feeling just consumed everything. In the end I saw a councillor. But I don’t think she was the reason I got better. Sometimes you have to do things by yourself. I felt like I bored people with the same problems every day. I said the same things over and over, but what could they do about it?

I think that’s when I turned to reading. For me reading a book is an escape from reality. It’s how I run away from everything, it’s my distraction. But I still hated how I was, who I was. I hated that feeling inside me telling me that nobody wants you, they’ll reject you if you don’t get happy. I wanted to tear my flesh off, turn back time, say goodbye. Everything was my fault. I had dug myself down into the dirt. But sometimes you have to reach your lowest point before you can find the light again. You have to fight, you have to realise what it’s doing to you. Battle your demons. The bad thoughts were in my head so I had to use my head to put them down.

Start accepting that this is the way things are now. No one can change it. It’s happened, man up and deal with it. Yes everyone needs time to grieve about stuff. But you can’t do that forever.

But how do you deal with a death? How do you cope when someone’s been there your entire life but suddenly they’re just gone? Yes everything falls apart and the tiniest thing will remind you of them. You’ll reach for the phone to tell them about your promotion at work, only to realise they won’t pick up. You’ll be lost for a while, but it will get better once you allow yourself to go on. The honest truth is that it will never heal 100% it’s been eight years and I still cry when a memory decides to show itself. I can’t remember the sound of their voices or Holly’s bark. But I still remember picking bluebells and playing cards in the caravan. I’ll always cling to those. But we have to let go a little. Otherwise we’d be trapped in remorse and sorrow. Accept that they’ve moved on.

With every knock down, you have to build yourself back up. Every time you rise again you become stronger. So the next problem that tries to bulldoze you in the face will only scratch the surface. You’re not going into the coma of sadness again. You’re a fighter, battle your way to happiness.

SMILE 😀

How To Rewrite

The rewriting process can be difficult once you’ve attached your heart to the novel you’ve created. But every writer needs to edit their work. Better to do it yourself then have an editor change your work. So here’s my helpful tips I’ve learnt since being at Uni

1. Write up a full complete first draft.

Once you have finished, save it and then close it. Do not look at it for a day or two. If you have enough time leave it for a week or even a month. This will open up your mind to think about other things and return to your piece with a fresh new approach.
When reading through your first draft try not to focus too much on spelling grammar and typos. You can concentrate more with this later on.

2. The main focus should be ‘how is my piece working? And how can I make it better?’

For example: If your piece is written in third person, consider how it would be different if it were written in first person. It may help you a great deal to write two versions, one in first and one in third person. This will allow you to play about with your main character. Do you want the reader to be in their head? Knowing only what they know? Or would you prefer them to be slightly distant, only knowing certain thoughts and feelings but always following them throughout the story?

3. How your story is driven?

Is it character or plot driven and how does this affect the way the story is working? When a story is plot driven it can be common to reveal too much too soon to the reader. Think about what can be kept secret and what needs to be revealed.

4. Clichés are bad.

They’ve been overdone so much that sometimes we can’t help but write them down in our own pieces. Try to avoid these, find a different way to describe something, think of a new metaphor. It might help to make a list of words and phrases that have the same meaning as the clichés but are more obscure. Using a thesaurus is always helpful.

5. Does your dialogue sound real?

Do the characters sound different from each other? If you struggle with dialogue try writing a paragraph in the perspective of each character. Choose a scene where they have importance or feel strongly about something and write as that character. By doing this you’ll find their ‘voice’ and personality easier.

Another tip for dialogue is to write a conversation between two characters as a script. That way you’ll find what words and phrases suit your character and give them a strong personality through what they say.

6. Less is more.

Cutting is better than adding words. Nobody wants to read three pages worth of a description, cut it down and get to the point. It is always best to overwrite your first draft, get it all out, word vomit over that document. This makes it easier for you to picture the description and then cut it down to the precise details that matter.

7. Show don’t tell.

The one rule to rule them all. If you take creative writing as a degree this rule will be engraved into your brain by the end of first year. Show your reader how a problem affects a character. Show how the character develops as a person. Don’t tell them how they have evolved. Examples of this are too much telling of a characters backstory. Let it gradually come into play as the story progresses. The reader doesn’t need to know their entire life story in the first chapter.

8. The physical copy

It’s easier to rewrite when you have a physical copy in your hands. Read through it first and highlight and cross out anything that doesn’t sound right. Then start a new blank document and retype everything. You’ll find that you change and edit a lot more if you start again rather than going through the document itself again. It evens helps with writers block.

Hope this helps, and thanks for reading.