I am blocked. I am afraid of writing. I dread it but I want to do it. Do I? I don’t know. I don’t know what to do if I’m not writing. I want to write stories again but I am scared, and blocked, and I don’t know what to do.
I don’t know if anyone will ever read this blog. If you’re here – cool! Welcome! If not, and I’m just shouting my recipes into the void… well, that’s good enough for me.
So, without further ado: my awesome salad recipe!
1/3 cup fat-free Greek yogurt
1 tbsp red wine vinegar
1 tbsp honey
1 tbsp hemp seeds
1 tsp black pepper
1/2 tsp salt (I used truffle salt!)
Various herbs and spices (basil and oregano especially!)
A drizzle of olive oil
1 head of romaine lettuce, chopped
1 hard-boiled egg, chopped
1 tbsp raw pumpkin seeds, chopped (sensing a pattern here?)
As much Awesome Sauce as you want
2 tbsp flax meal, sprinkled over the dressing
Garnish with chia and hemp seeds
Mix your Awesome Sauce in a measuring cup. The honey is an emulsifier, and the red wine vinegar helps to thin out the dressing and make it tangy and delicious. I like to add hemp seeds to give it a nice crunch, but you can skip that step if you’d like. Whisk it all together and reserve.
Chop your romaine and dump it in a wide, flat bowl. Then chop your eggs and pumpkin seeds and mix it into the salad (or leave it all on top and mix later!). Pour your Awesome Sauce onto the salad, then sprinkle flax meal and whatever other yummies you want on top. Eat up!
Today’s a great day. Unusually great, because usually my days are coloured by a grey malaise, an oily sheen of hopelessness that doesn’t lift for weeks on end. Even months.
Today? Today I slept in, got up, took a walk in the early noon sun, came back home, did yoga, listened to music, did the dishes, made a delicious smoothie, took a cold shower, and thought, “If this isn’t nice, I don’t know what is.”
For me, happy moments are always tinged with foreboding – “When is this going to end?” Today, I’m not letting that happen. I’m going to ride this happy moment until it comes to its natural end.
Not every moment can be happy. In a healthy life, happiness and sadness are balanced, flowing in a constant cycle. And this is a good thing. Otherwise, how would we grow? What would be the point?
Today, I will quietly thank the universe for this moment of contentment, and use the peaceful afternoon to write well, eat well, and grow.
Whoops! I forgot that I was going to write down a brief account of my very successful therapy appointment on Friday.
On my first appointment, Sara had just had a meeting with a teen and their very angry, transphobic mom. (Sara is a gender therapist, but she also does regular therapy – I’m there for both reasons.) She had to recharge a little bit before letting me in.
This time, her last client was apparently doing very well (I saw them on their way out; they were so pretty!), so Sara was very high on energy and let me right in. We yammered on like we usually do since both of us just love to talk. Then we got down to business.
She commented that I looked happy, but I think she’s starting to realize that the “bubbliness” is kind of my default face. The one I show to the world – the mask, if you want a melodramatic term.
I had been having dreams about my ex and waking up missing her and feeling horribly depressed, despite being on a regular medication schedule again (finally!). In the appointment, I decided to talk about it, but I couldn’t get out three words before breaking down crying. So much for positive energy, I guess?
We worked through a lot of stuff, though, including my past abuse. She confirmed that it was indeed abuse – something none of my therapists have ever agreed on. I remember that washed-up old psychiatrist at the mental health center telling me that it wasn’t a big deal and my past therapist telling me that since it wasn’t rape or “real” molestation, it didn’t count. Apparently when an older teenager coerces a younger teenager into having sex with them by whining and making them feel guilty, that’s not a bad thing at all.
Anyway. I bawled my eyes out about my ex, recounted my abuse (which she validated), talked about the way my dad has been pressuring me into getting a job – something I have no control over beyond applying, which I’ve been doing in spades! – and tried to explain the anxiety I have over texting friends back or answering/making phone calls.
I also discussed my borderline symptoms, which she thought was perceptive of me and didn’t deny like others have. She’s really good about affirming and validating my thoughts without coddling me or telling me I’m perfect – something I respect massively.
I just really love her and I’m so incredibly excited to be working with her. I’m also excited and nervous for when we start talking about transition. To use my little sister’s terminology, I’m “nervoucited”!
NaNoWriMo word count so far: 2637
Good morning, me! That’s how I used to begin my daily pages, although I don’t do those anymore – they never really led to any sort of noticeable breakthrough in my writing. Some things just work better for some people than they do for others, I guess.
This morning I ate the healthiest breakfast EVER. I made a big bowl of oatmeal with flax meal, coconut oil, honey, hemp seeds, cardamom, cinnamon, and a big dollop of almond butter in the middle. The last few bites when the flax-induced “slippery” feeling to the oatmeal sort of overwhelmed me, but aside from that, it was delicious.
I’m also in the process of drinking a whole pot of green tea. Well, it’s green tea blended with yerba mate and lemongrass. The blend was discontinued without me noticing, so my next Guayakí purchase will have to be either plain yerba mate or the chai blend (which looks delicious!).
My “whole pot of green tea” routine has been going on for a few weeks now. Today I felt especially groggy upon waking up, so I decided I’d need something stronger than the Earl Grey green tea I’d been brewing. Hence the yerba mate (which is not tea, per se, but it’s blended with tea so it counts).
On NaNoWriMo: I didn’t mean to skip journaling those first two days, but here I am! I went above and my goal on Sunday, then tanked a little yesterday (only wrote 600 words at 11 p.m.), but I should be able to get back on track today.
Even though my workout clothes haven’t come in yet, I think I’ll take a walk today in my new athletic shoes. I’m definitely not ready to begin jogging! A good walk will be good for my brain, even in the ridiculous heat. I’d heard there would be a Halloween heat wave and didn’t believe it. You’d think a Floridian would know better.
Sweating it out,
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!
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:
- I’m going to use it to rant whatever bullshit happens in my daily life.
- I’ll be chronicling my daily life as a writer. This means character sketches, plot ideas, and the occasional fit of brainstorming.
- 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.