I’m okay. And so are you. (a pep talk)

Without the dark there isn’t light. Without the pain there is no relief.

I have a confession to make: I routinely email my favorite authors detailing all the dramas of my personal life.

Let me explain.

Continue reading “I’m okay. And so are you. (a pep talk)”

How to Stay Sane in Freshman Year: a Q&A with the Girl Who Didn’t

In the spring semester of 2017, when I was 16, I wrote an article of tips for how to get through your first year of college sane. In the spring semester of 2018, I was admitted into 72-hour-suicide-watch in a locked hospital for wanting to die too much. I figure that pretty much makes me an authority on college students and mental health.

In the article, I had written that suicide is the third leading cause of death among college students. That is still true, and it’s a fact I can now relate to personally. If you’re entering college soon, mental illness is probably something you or someone you know will be able to relate to as well.

Let’s talk.

Continue reading “How to Stay Sane in Freshman Year: a Q&A with the Girl Who Didn’t”

Gap year update #1: Dancing to Smells Like Teen Spirit. Or, August.

I get to start the day at 8am by kissing my mom on the forehead. I can proceed to open all the windows and light all the candles: Not Your Mama’s Fudge. Lavender. Sherlock’s Study.

If I feel particularly inspired, I sit down at my desk to pen this story. And why not? I have all the time in the world.

Continue reading “Gap year update #1: Dancing to Smells Like Teen Spirit. Or, August.”

I’m turning 18 and that’s scary.

I am addicted to the ocean and though Grammy said to come back from my walk before dark, after the sun sets right before our eyes and the only lights left are those twinkling condos in the west and iphone flashlights, I will my ankles to move but they remain grounded in the sand. You can see the whole sky out here, almost the entire earth in all directions. This is how it was supposed to be, I think. I stand in the ocean and let its moody waters cleanse me. Walk Between Worlds by Simple Minds and Forward by K. Michelle massage my heart. I want to believe that God is here in the vastness. Something created this, all of it, and put me here to witness the great becoming and unbecoming of the blue, how the waves claim their individuality for a second before dissolving into their universe. I want to believe that the ocean is a part of me too. I want to bottle up this security, this eternity, this faith that there is a reason why I am exactly where I am right now, and take it with me to the city.

Continue reading “I’m turning 18 and that’s scary.”

Dear first-year, me too.

Dear first-year.

I’m a little bit— okay, a lot— in love with Glennon Doyle these days. (Sorry, Abby Wambach). In search of some soul soup, I started listening to the Super Soul Sunday podcast. Every Sunday or so, Oprah Winfrey invites all these spiritual leaders and visionaries to her house under the oak trees and asks them scary questions like, “What does God mean to you?” and “Walk me through the most traumatic thing that’s ever happened to you so we can all learn how to be this Hulk strong,” etc. There’s researchers, comedians, priests, nuns, old presidents, TV anchors, the Office stars, and pretty much anyone who ever struck Oprah a certain way because when you’re rich and famous you can sap wisdom from anyone you want.

Continue reading “Dear first-year, me too.”

50 Things to Remember When You Feel Like Giving Up

The week that the news scrambled to memorialize Kate Spade and Anthony Bourdain and hotline numbers began to populate my social media feed, I took my dog Daisy for a walk, carrying the YA Queer Romance book We Are the Ants by Shaun David Hutchinson.

How do I begin to describe how I was feeling that day, sitting at the edge of the rock with my ankles dipped in the lake as Daisy waded a foot in to cool down, trying not to fall? How can I explain the indescribable fury I felt toward a journalist I barely knew for giving up? Why did it feel like personal betrayal when I heard that Kate Spade, someone whose name had never passed under my radar before, did not seek professional help because she felt it would be bad for her brand?

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Prologue: To my readers, with love

I started writing posts for Dear Future Daughter a little over two months ago through an anonymous blog titled And She Will Recover. At the end of a rough and fast year, I knew if I wanted to heal, I would have to return— as I always have— to writing. I needed to process, build up my community, and for myself and others to know that we were not alone.

As many of you know, I’m introverted and deeply feeling [read: reserved and dark], which generally means that small talk makes me want to throttle people. Since I would hate for someone to meet their untimely end simply for trying to talk to me about the weather, I need to find some ways to communicate with people on a deeper, darker level.

But Dear Future Daughter isn’t meant to be a website filled with pages and pages of my own rants about Shonda Rhimes murdering my best friends and people who irritate me. This is a community and a platform for you. Tell me what it is that turns you into a shaken-up ziploc bag of vinegar and baking soda. Tell me what turns you into a pitiful puddle of raw feel. Tell me what you think about politics, about mental heath, about religion. This is the space to shout it out loud. Carve out a piece of your messy, bloody heart and hand it to me on an aluminum pan, for heaven’s sake! It’s why I’ve made a pitch form here. Continue reading “Prologue: To my readers, with love”

We Hold Each Other. Tightly.

The other day, I was hiking with my dog and we stopped at a lake. It was perfect. Cicadas were chirping. A duck even landed right in front of us. I was thinking about Kate Spade and Anthony Bourdain, how Kate once said to someone that she wouldn’t get help because it did not go along with her brand. And I was reading We Are the Ants by Shaun Hutchinson. It’s a YA/Romance/Science Fiction mash-up about this kid Henry who is given the choice to save the world from ending but doesn’t want to because he’s bullied and his boyfriend killed himself months ago and everything sucks.

But there’s this boy he’s slowly falling in love with. He asks him, if you knew the world was ending and you could stop it, would you? He looks at Henry strangely, and Henry says, “‘What if I don’t give a shit about the world?’

“That would be fucking sad.’

“‘Why?’

“‘Because the world is beautiful.'” Continue reading “We Hold Each Other. Tightly.”

Anthem, or Thirteen Reasons Why Not, or Things I Tell Myself on Dark Nights

1

According to a report by the Department of Agriculture, it costs approximately $233,610 to raise a child, which was enough for my mother to buy 4 porsches or pay off all her student loan debt, but instead she decided to almost give her life and all the blood in her body for me to live a little,

To see the stars and make them my own

And she must have believed that there is goodness enough in this world for these verses to grow that there is strength enough in these verses for these verses to grow.

2

Will she still believe in goodness when I’m gone? Continue reading “Anthem, or Thirteen Reasons Why Not, or Things I Tell Myself on Dark Nights”