Overhaul Day

Today has been a long time coming: Overhaul Day, also known as Deleting-All-My-Extraneous-Files-and-Updating-All-My-Software-After-Pretending-I-Didn’t-Need-To-For-Three-Months Day.

My iPhone now has over 2.15 GB free (after deleting 1,052 photos!), I’m updating it to iOS 8.3, and I’m trying to decide whether or not to update my MacBook to OS X El Capitan. I texted my techie dad to see what he thinks. No response yet, but we’ll see!

I’m uploading all 1,052 of those photos to Google Drive, then probably logging off the computer for a while to read some of the books I checked out at the library last night. It’s hard to believe I’ve gotten this much done before 10 a.m.; I should probably go to bed at 11 p.m. every night!

Signing off,
-Rhys

Me, as I currently am

A little over a year ago, I was in a mental health crisis center in Kissimmee, Florida, crying over the phone to my girlfriend about how I missed her. I was writing letters to her in a composition notebook about how I didn’t know what I was going to do when I got out. I felt that I had no future, nothing to work towards or to offer, no way out of the pit I had fallen into. I was eighteen and jobless, carless, still living at home with my parents in the summer, paralyzed with depression.

And now? Well, for starters, I’m single, medicated, and out of the hospital. So that’s good. On the downside, I am still jobless, carless, and living at home, although now it’s with my mother, as my father’s girlfriend decided she didn’t want me living in their house after she found out that I had been self-harming. (Being kicked out didn’t exactly do wonders for that, in case you’re curious.)

In a year, my mother has gotten divorced again, changed jobs, and moved into an apartment along with me and my eleven-year-old sister. I’m finally seeing a therapist again, and she’s actually competent – a nice change from my previous two therapists, one of whom induced traumatic flashbacks for “healing purposes,” while the other suggested that my attraction to women was a direct result of being sexually coerced in middle school.

It hasn’t been the easiest of years.

Now, I feel that I’m currently on a threshold. I’m learning to drive, applying to every job in walking distance, and signing up for classes at the local community college. My new therapist is compassionate and easy to talk to, even about the hard things.

So, what now?

I decided to start a blog, in part because I need a place to vent this stuff and also because my old blog was full of self-pity, bad poetry, angry rants at the ex who coerced me, and – even worse – love notes to my most recent ex. (Reading those after a breakup is quite possibly the worst decision you can make, short of checking their blog to see if they’re dating again yet.)

Ever since I was young, I have been a writer. Rather than use the chaos and sadness of my daily life to fuel my stories, however, I have always been something of an escapist, writing novels about talking manatees, dimension-jumping princes, and people in love. However, I’ve started to realize that even though writing escapism is 100% okay, I need a writing outlet for the stress and wild emotions that have been wreaking havoc on my head for the last few years, because I’ve been staring down an absolute rhinoceros of a writer’s block since late high school.

And you know what? I’m going to kick its ass.

This November, I’m taking part in NaNoWriMo, which is short for National Novel Writing Month. Every November, participants write at least 50,000 words of a novel in 30 days. It’s been somewhat of an annual tradition for me, but the last time I made it to 50k was 2010. 2015 is going to be different. I have a never-ending supply of caffeine, about twenty blank composition notebooks, and a huge chip on my shoulder.

So! This blog is going to serve a few purposes:

  1. I’m going to use it to rant whatever bullshit happens in my daily life.
  2. I’ll be chronicling my daily life as a writer. This means character sketches, plot ideas, and the occasional fit of brainstorming.
  3. During NaNoWriMo (and probably the months beyond), I’m going to stick my current word count at the top of each post, as well as a brief assessment of how it’s going; e.g. “frustrating,” “awesome,” or “fucking terrible.”

With all that being said, I’ll probably post once per week at the very least, possibly more if something happens. If you’re reading this, awesome! It’s wicked personal, though, so I understand if it’s not your cup of tea. And if no one is reading this and I’m shouting into the abyss – well, that’s cool, too.

It’s going to take a while for my life to resemble my dreams. But my dreams are fairly simple – a car, a job, college, creativity – so here’s hoping that every step I take, including this blog, leads me closer to those dreams.

-Rhys