Soulful Saturday: Counseling

It’s hard to believe it’s already Saturday, isn’t it? Looks like it’s time for a soulful conversation! I was struggling to decide what to talk about as usual today when I suddenly came upon a youtuber talking about things they won’t promote… and something really resonated with me when they mentioned online counseling.

I’m not against online counseling, mind you. I admit I’d try it- but that’s not what I intend to talk about today. I want to talk about counseling in general, and how counseling and therapy have played a part in my life over the years. I’ve been in and out of therapy and counseling since I was six years old.

I’ve always suffered from notable anxiety, ever since I was small. I think when I went to my first therapist, it was after an incident where my social anxiety made me vomit because it got so bad, but I can’t quite remember for sure what really started me on the journey. The journey only got more confusing and convoluted as time went on though. Here are some anecdotes as to why.

My first therapist was a man- and we often played with dolls and stuff as part of my therapy sessions. It was the good ol’, ‘show me what a typical day is like through these toys’ type of thing. But, one night, I had a bizarre nightmare. The content was something that may be a bit triggering, so be forewarned before you read the next sentence. I had a nightmare that I was raped.

You’re probably wondering, how at such a young age did I know what rape was? I can tell you right now I have no memory of it ever physically happening to me. The thing is, in case you’ve forgotten… I have exceptionally strong hearing. And, it just so happened that around that time, my aunt was telling my dad about a time she was attacked, or so my father recalls. We’re pretty sure it’s from me overhearing her talk about it from across the house, looking back. But, that didn’t change that over the course of a single night I became terrified of men, including my therapist.

So after that, all my therapists were women. You probably don’t see how much more I can talk about this subject- and you’re right, I can’t talk about the nightmares anymore. But therapy has had its ups and downs in my life. I was in a group therapy at school, and one year, I ended up ruining my relationship with one of my cousins through it.

From middle school onward, I was in a special group therapy for kids with divorced parents. It was hosted by my school itself, so we kids in it were taken out of classes for our group sessions. This group continued into high school, when my aunt and uncle were starting divorce proceedings. Our therapist asked us in one group session if we knew anyone that might benefit from the group. Considering I knew how hard it was on my cousin, I mentioned he might.

That was a big mistake.

Someone went up to my cousin at school surprised to hear his parents were divorcing. He got really upset finding out I talked about it, even though he knew my heart was in the right place. For a long period of time, he stopped talking to me. All because I thought he could make use of some therapy like I had. But understand, I knew it was hard on him. He came to my room upset numerous times when visiting our grandma’s house, where I lived, when the proceedings first started. He’d always been there for me during my parents divorce and my father’s illness. He was like a big brother to me. That’s why, when I saw him suffering, I wanted to help him. And I thought I was… But clearly, I wasn’t.

Don’t worry though- we’re on better terms now. I don’t talk to him that much, but when we see each other, we chat. High school’s a stressful time enough as it is, that’s all. As adults, we’ve grown a better understanding of the past.

Therapy isn’t always helpful for everyone. Sometimes, it’s the method the therapist works with that doesn’t work. I’d like to share one anecdote about this as well. You see, I was needing psychiatric and psychological help in 8th grade. Yes, I’m going out of order with these stories, but please be patient with me regarding that.

In 8th grade, I moved across the country to live with my aunt for six months. I’d only just started psychiatric help when it was decided I’d be moving… And my aunt didn’t believe I needed it. She also didn’t think I needed the kind of therapy I was getting, or so I suspect. See, she did get me a psychiatrist- but the psychiatrist wasn’t there to deal with my mental health issues. She took me to him for ‘family counseling’. Also, ‘family counseling’ was just her complaining about the things I didn’t do as she said, and him telling me to do them.

At the time, my aunt truly believed that with structure alone, I’d get fixed up and turn into a perfect mini adult. But what she didn’t count on was the fact I was a teenager… a teenager who needed help. A teenager that would rebel if necessary. And, as I rebelled, the therapy showed it was working less and less. My aunt filled my schedule to the brim with activities she wanted me in, that I had no say over. I admit I enjoyed some of them, but with a packed schedule of school, homework, and extra curricular activities, I didn’t have time for my own thoughts or coping skills that actually worked for me.

I started to do worse in school, I started sneaking snacks (she was very against snacks and sweets, which while understandable, isn’t always the best thing to just stop eating cold turkey as a kid). I felt like I had no say in my own life, and the therapist we were seeing wasn’t making me feel any better about it. It all ended up leading to me returning home to New Jersey after just six months, with me feeling quite aggravated with my aunt. We’ve started to fix our issues together since then- she realizes she could have done things differently, and that I did really need the help she was told I needed. She even started admitting some of her own problems, which I’m very proud of her for.

The truth of the current situation is this: I do still need therapy. I see a psychiatrist, but he can only do so much. I’m working on finding a therapist that takes my insurance with my case manager’s help. I found out, also, about a specific kind of therapy that would help me most likely more than other forms, thanks to a friend. I need to talk to my case manager about that still… But the end of the story is this: everyone’s needs are different, and so everyone’s counseling should be different as well. If you need help, make sure not to give up just because your first therapist isn’t helping you enough. Try another one, who has a different method. Therapy and counseling isn’t one size fits all. It’s a lot of trial and error, and actually trying.

Are you in counseling or therapy? What kind of counseling do you find helps you the most? Share what you’re willing in the comments- I want to learn more about you, and you never know how your story might help someone else!

Topical Tuesday: The Winner Train

Oh hey there! As you all know, I am a winner from NaNoWriMo this year! That means a lot of things to me: it means discounts to get new writing programs to try, and gives me the right to pat my own back for finishing when I thought I never would. I’ve always liked competition, but especially competing against myself, you see. Sure, some people make rivalries even in the writing community, and yes, I did team sports and such in middle school… But I didn’t like that form of competition. There were insanely loud cheers and it felt more aggressive half the time. It was stressful because people were relying on me, too. That’s why, for the most part, I’ve spent my life focusing on competing with my own self, rather than joining something more interlaced with aggression.

The reason I’m bringing up competition is two-fold. First off, a friend recommended it while I was struggling to think of a topic for today’s blog. Second, though, is I’m spending the end of the year finding and joining writing contests that have some form of meaning or interest to me. I joined my first ever short story contest (and my god, writing such a short story is hard!). I also found a poetry contest I plan to enter this year as well. I’m going to be getting 3 entries, so I need to decide on two more, or write them. My first poem for it is already secure.

What’s funny is when you compete with yourself over time. The poem I have set for the poetry contest is actually one I wrote a long time ago when I had a murderous migraine. I reread it since I planned to enter it, and just… my god. Why was this my favorite poem I ever wrote? I don’t get it. And yet, it still served its purpose, and I still plan to send it in.

I do miss some other forms of competition. I really liked discus when I wasn’t getting hit in the knee by a moving disc of six pound rubber. Basketball wasn’t bad either. In fact, I get jealous when I walk to the park and there are kids playing basketball because I want to join… But asking them would be far too scary. So, I just watch.

Also, competition can be great for things like household chores! I sometimes treat the dishes as a competition. They’re no longer my job, but I inspect how my dad did them and always feel eerily pleased when there’s a mistake he couldn’t see but I can. It’s pathetic, I know- but it makes me feel a little better about myself in some weird way.

I’ve watched videos about motivation lately, and a lot talk about a ‘ten minute tidy’, which is a competition with yourself to clean more in ten minutes than the last time. I was really into them for a while, but I kind of just stopped. I hope to start doing them again, maybe during word sprints other people do. I have plenty of tidying to do- so focusing on just a bit for ten minutes would probably make it easier on me.

Do you consider yourself a competitive person? What kinds of things do you like to compete with, and with who? I’d love to hear your own stories of triumph over rivals, whether that rival be your friend on another basketball team or yourself in getting a task done. How do you find competition helpful in life? Comment below to tell me all this stuff and more- I love hearing about you guys, and learning from you too!

Take care!

Soulful Saturday: Friendship, Online and Off

Hey there everyone! Today, I want to talk about a very important topic to me: Friendship. Friendship isn’t something that occurs in a day to me- it takes time, it takes conversing, and- okay actually, cut that. That’s how it should be, not how it is. For those of you that don’t know already, I have borderline personality disorder. My views of people can change at the drop of a hat. So that makes me wonder… Why do I feel loyal to my friends, and not feel that light switch go on and off?

I think to start this conversation with you, it’s best if I make something clear: I’m not talking about online or offline separately. I’m talking about friends of all forms. For me, a friend is a person I feel safe with. I feel they’re honest people, and not people I have to fear losing as easily. This feeling is strongest when I first meet people, online or offline. However, the closer I get to people, the more I usually pull away…

So why is it I have certain friends that I’ve had for years now? I certainly feel unusually close with them as time’s passed. Have I improved my ability to trust people?

The answer to that is probably a yes. Or rather, I hope it is. See, just last week I met up with an online friend for the first time (as in first time meeting this particular friend, mind you! I’ve met others before this.) I was offered a free ticket to join her at Comicon, which was my first time going to a convention by the way. Trusting someone so much that I’d want to meet up with them and even go to a big event that’s sure to bring me anxiety and such isn’t exactly my norm.

Another thing outside my norm that I did recently: I texted my offline friends just to check on them. I’m not a big phone person, but texting is something I feel comfortable with. However, I don’t normally text friends that much. The last time I’d texted these friends was in April! I had nothing really to talk about with them, but I wanted to see their names, and to see how they were doing. I’m never good about keeping in touch. It’s just part of my internal algorithm, if you will.

This just brings me more questions and, surprisingly, more anxiety than I can shake a stick at. What led to these changes? Is it actually a good thing I’m doing these things? Sure, I’d talked to my friend from the Comicon adventure plenty of times- we’ve been friends for years through a common interest, and we’ve even video chatted many times, alongside our mutual friend circle.

And that’s another thing I’d like to mention- I never even wanted to video or voice chat with people only a year ago. When did I start wanting to hear the voices and put faces to the names I’d used for them so long? It feels as if I’ve changed drastically in just a couple years. I just don’t know what lead to it!

I think it’s a good change- I hope it is, at the very least. Still, I can’t quite put my finger on the trigger for these changes… and that bothers me a lot. I’m thankful to have the friends I have, whether it’s my friends from middle school I texted just the other day or online friends like the one I went to the city to meet.

I just feel a little rattled by the fact that, for the longest time I’d been the type to pull away the closer I felt to people. To suddenly realize I’m not doing that… It makes me feel vulnerable and scared, even if it also makes me feel a sense of relief and accomplishment. I must be lucky I’ve met so many kind, honest and patient people!

What do you consider the most important thing in a friendship? How often do you communicate with friends, and how do you personally prefer these communications work? As someone new to keeping in touch with friends and trying to keep them, I could really use the feedback from your own experiences. Let me learn from you- and maybe, if I’m lucky, you’ve in some way learned from me what not to do based on my past.

As always, I appreciate you taking the time to read my ramblings about the deeper parts of my life. I hope you’ll share your own experiences with me someday- and I hope mine can do something for you, too!

Throwback Thursday: The Characters Who Raised Me

Hey there everyone! How are you doing today? The week’s almost over, can you believe it? I got a request from one of my loyal readers recently: a post about fictional characters, whether mine or someone elses, and how they’ve helped me grow into who I am now. Honestly, I find this topic super interesting, and the fact I can use any number of characters is pretty awesome. So, shall we jump right in?

When I was young, Cardcaptor Sakura was a big part of my life. It inspired me to let my imagination go wild, sure, but that’s not why I’m noting it here. No, I’m here to note a specific line I always heard Syaoran Li say: Expect the Unexpected.

This quote has lived in my heart for over a decade. I try my best to prepare for all situations, and am never as shocked when something goes awry as others might be. I’m certainly not patient, but I did learn to take a look at the bigger picture to see what things are unlikely, but could happen. To Syaoran, I send my thanks. This was a really good life lesson.

Another character that really inspired me was a game character- namely Linear Cannon from Evolution Worlds. Her gentility and gentle mannerisms intrigued me greatly, but what it really boosted was my love for music. See, Linear’s got two primary skill sets- one with a frying pan she can hit you with, the other being her ocarina. The music from her ocarina was always beautiful, and it even made me want my own. I do have one, but I can’t play. Still, Linear warmed my heart- and she opened me up to just how music can affect the world in different ways.

Those are just characters that affected me early in my life, however. There’s some that in recent years have helped teach me a variety of lessons and inspired me in a variety of ways. I’d like to give them some time in the spotlight too!

First, Natsume Yuujinchou’s title character, Natsume Takashi. To me, Natsume’s usually soft tone and gentle demeanor are quite nice- but what I really like about him is that he’s learned to balance life dealing with yokai and dealing with people. It takes time for him to adjust to this lifestyle- but that he’s always trying to help people and yokai alike is really moving, and the fact that he can balance those two worlds he lives in is remarkable. It makes me want to work hard to balance my life too. God knows I need it!

Another character that inspired me is Uru from Shiawase Kissa Sanchoume. Uru, the heroine, is a very strong girl- physically and mentally. She causes a lot of ruckus in life, but she tries hard to be helpful to anyone she can. I consider Uru a great role model- she’s creative, she sees the best in people (which I try to, and try harder now that I’ve seen Uru in action)… And she always makes up for her blunders, which I still need to learn to do more.

The fifth character from other fiction that’s helped me grow as a person is Hades-sensei from Hokenshitsu no Shinigami. What lesson did I learn from someone named after a death god, you might be asking. The answer is quite simple: Hades-sensei is an amazingly hard worker, and will do his best to take care of people even if they’ve harmed him, physically or mentally, or just in general are rude. He’s patient and hard working, things I most certainly am not. He knows his face is a bit scary, but he tries his best to ignore that factor, because it’s all just superficial anyway. To me, this is all a great lesson in personal growth. His determination is truly admirable.

I’ve talked about five characters from fiction of others- but now, I think it’d be fun to tell you about the lessons my own characters have given me over time. So who’s going to be first? To my surprise, it’s Alien Irony’s Lily Hawkins!

Lily has taught me more about the beauty of being honest than anything or anyone else in the world. She’s a lesbian, and she doesn’t hide it, nor does she try to hide who she likes. No matter how many times Sakura rejects her, Lily continues to cling on and believe in a future together. I find her determination and ability to be as bold as she is quite admirable, and want to better learn how to be a bit bolder.

Another character of mine from Alien Irony that really speaks to me and teaches me things is none-other than the head of covert operations, Walter Graile. Walter is an interesting person. He goes with the flow and acts as if he doesn’t think things through, when really he’s calculating any information remotely related to what he’s working on at a given time. In a way, he reminds me of that old line to ‘expect the unexpected’, but the way he does it and the way it’s worked out for him is remarkable. He found a place to belong even if he didn’t get into acting quite the way he wanted. He reminds me to be less laser-focused, and to accept alternatives.

Next up is Kana Carina, an old roleplay character I had for a while that turned into the heroine of one of my WIPs, Luna Blue. Kana is a strong-willed girl wit her priorities pretty straight in her head. She’s not weak against change, and in fact thrives in it- something I am still learning to do. She may have a few bad habits, but what shines through the most when I write her is her devotion to those around her, as well as her need to keep promises even if they were made only to herself. I think it’s really admirable, and I think I’d like to be half the woman she is considering those traits. Maybe not her tendency to work until she collapses, though.

Speaking of Luna Blue, I can’t help thinking Kieran fits the topic of characters that teach me. Kieran is from a species similar but not akin to humans- and, for the most part, his kind hate humans! Kieran, however, tries to find the good in them, and lives among them to make an educated decision about how he thinks of them. His optimism and idealism rival my own in a way I can’t explain- but the fact that he works so hard to come up with his own decisions is quite nice. It’s a skill I have a lot of work to do with!

And finally, the fifth of my own characters that raised me sends us back to Alien Irony. Should I be worried only two series of mine got included in this post? Anyway, the fifth character to inspire me, raise me, and motivate me is Sayaku. Sayaku is an alien that’s come to my version of Earth to be near his sister, who moved there due to health reasons. Sayaku has been hurt many times by women he loved (and by hurt I mean beaten up)… But he never once blamed them for his wounds, and he still tried to be there for them even if the love went stale from the pain. Sayaku teaches me the importance of family, but his biggest lesson for me is to move on from painful things. To be honest, I never really realized until now that Sayaku did this for me. I always say it’s my dad’s phrase, “this too shall pass”… But I think Sayaku growing past the blame game and trying to show empathy to the people who’ve hurt him… It’s amazingly beautiful, and I want to be able to do that someday.

Well, that’s a wrap for today, guys! I really hope you enjoyed reading this, because I enjoyed writing it quite a bit! Tell me, though: what characters have been role models for you throughout your life. Are any ones you made yourself? This topic is of peak interest to me- I might have to write more on this subject another time. I’m sure I’m missing a thousand characters or two! I already know some of them, but that’s not until next time. Take care, guys!

Topical Tuesday: Bullet Journal

Hi everyone! Welcome to a new week here on my blog! Today’s Topical Tuesday, I’m going to return to a recent topic I covered. I’m returning to the concept of journaling, because I ended up caving in to the pressure I gave myself watching all those videos about bullet journals.

That’s right, everyone. I now have a bullet journal. I walked to the dollar store on Friday of last week and ended up buying a tiny, cute journal to work with. “Why did you write about this now and not on Saturday?” I hear you asking. Well, to be honest… I did start on Friday, but I like to write my blog posts a day early, and I wrote Saturday’s post before my walk that afternoon. Thus, I hadn’t started it until I already had a post written- one that’s very important to me, no less.

I’ve noticed that my blog has been less and less related to my writing, and that made Saturday’s post extra important to me to write about: because my life is writing, yet all I’ve been writing is my life. And I write way more than that! That’s why, that day, I wanted a change of pace. A return to my roots, so to speak.

And that may also explain why I decided to try bullet journaling. It works as a reminder that I’m a creative spirit, one that needs a lot of help keeping track of things. I’m very unorganized as a person- the fact that someone showed admiration for the fact I can keep a general schedule on two blogs made me remember why I decided to take on the challenge: because I was amazed at how organized those people were.

So far, I’m still learning the ropes. I haven’t done a ‘daily’ page as of writing this post- but I found a lot of interesting pages to work on, and it’s also been a great help in trying to make my handwriting better (though it’s still pretty bad, if I’m being honest!). I even found inspiration to make pages listing my coping skills for my mental health, a page with ideas for future topics with you guys in mind, and plenty more. I don’t have much artistic flair in it yet- my gel pens refuse to work efficiently, so I could only draw on one or two pages with color… But I did doodle on a spread that’s meant to remind you who you are and what makes you you!

Here, have a couple pictures of my journal so far:

Do any of you guys journal in any sense of the word? Are there any bullet journalers in the house? I’d love to hear all of your experiences and advice on the matter- because while it’s meant to be personal, isn’t it good to share personal things sometimes?

Topical Tuesday: Friendship

Good morning, guys! It’s hard to believe Tuesday came so quickly. I’m still not adjusted to days of the week yet, or so it seems by my extreme fatigue. Fatigue aside, I have a great topic to talk about today, and it just so happens to start with an F: Friendship.

Friendship is a very special thing- but it’s even more special if you’re like me and struggle to trust people even 10%. My fear of being abandoned has made it common for me to try pushing people away the more they become close to me. That’s right folks, if I was pushing you away, either I really didn’t like you or I just liked you too much. And yes, I know that’s confusing.

I’d like to put an emphasis on one word there, though: was. I’ve come to a point where I don’t always assume someone is going to leave me because of how close we are. I still occasionally react as if I do think that, but I’m learning a way to separate my real friends, such as you guys, from my friends that I can’t seem to see staying by my side. That difference? Family.

To me, my true friends, my good friends- they’re family to me. It doesn’t mean I’m guaranteed not to push them away at a certain point, but I’m far less likely to than if I don’t see them that way. I hate my extended family much of the time, but my friend family is very dear to me. I try hard to fight the urge to avoid them far more than I’d avoided keeping away from friends before. I do have friends that may feel I’ve pushed away from them still. Friends that are extremely dear to me, the closest to family I have offline. But that’s not intended, and I hope someday they see this: I love you all, I just kind of lose track of time.

Time isn’t something I’m good at keeping an eye on. As my schedule is barely existent, days blend together and so I can’t keep track of when I last spoke to someone. Was it just a day, a week, a month? I also still have one worry that comes up often: I don’t want to be too clingy like I tend to be. What if they’re busy or something? It’d make me feel bad if I interrupt them while they’re working hard on things in their own lives.

That said, I want you all to know- if you’re my friend, you’re my family. And to me, all of you reading this are somewhere in that family tree- and I can’t be more thankful to have you, despite my insecurities.

Throwback Thursday: My Heart (Part 2)

Hello everyone! Welcome to part two of my memories related to my heart. This time, though, I won’t be talking about my WPW. That’s done and over with! What isn’t over with is my emotional progress, and today, I really want to delve into that. I know delving deep is for Saturdays though, so we’ll keep it light. Let’s talk about my dating history- not too much, but enough to show my growth.

A precursor to understanding my mental state in regards to dating is I’ve always dated online. Yes, even when I was a teen, I never seemed to fall hard for my classmates (at least none that liked me back)… But I found it easy to find partners online. My first boyfriend- who I’m still friendly with online a decade or so later- was when I was a preteen. We did live in the same state, not far from each other… but we were both very young, and meeting just wasn’t feasible. What’s funny is we still haven’t met, but we’re still good friends! Interesting how the world works, isn’t it?

I’ve dated many people since then- some I was working to save up to visit, others I didn’t like quite enough to want to meet. But last year, something big happened. I actually met my special someone in person. We’ve been together over a year now- when we met up, it was already more than half a year. (Wait, doesn’t that mean it’s going to be two years soon!?) In fact, it was just last June that I got to see him for the first time.

See, this relationship has changed a lot of my mind. Unlike with others, I was desperate to be able to be near him. More-so than any relationship before. When he offered to bring me over to where he lives, I was honestly in shock… But also the happiest I’d ever been, probably.

That trip, however, set off a couple of my anxiety triggers. For starters, we couldn’t stop pushing that we’d take the couch so the other could take his bed. We ended up just both sleeping in his bed, side by side. As someone who’s been a quasi-androphobe most of her life, that was a big deal all by itself. But it wasn’t just him in the house, either. I was staying in the family home. Yep, you guessed it, it was basically a mix of ‘meeting my boyfriend offline for the first time’ and ‘meeting the parents for the first time’ all in one.

The fact that I even trusted him that strongly was a clue for my fickle self that I was growing. He’d lied to me about his life in the past, mostly because he was trying to seem more attractive for me than he felt he was. However, when he came out with the truth months before that trip, I wasn’t angry in the way I’d usually be. If anything, I was happy the things he said turned out to be lies. I was happy he was opening up to me! I wasn’t feeling betrayed like any other lie I’d heard in my life!

And then we met, and slowly my fears faded. My androphobia didn’t act up, because I felt safe. I haven’t felt safe with someone other than my father in a long time. Even now, he’s changing me: I get urges to hear his voice to feel closer to him than I am. I crave to be near him once more- even if it’s just to watch him playing a game or something.

Okay, now that I fully embarrassed myself, tell me: How has a relationship helped you grow? I’d love to hear more stories about growing stronger with the help of others!

P.S.: I have plans to visit him again in the coming months. When I know when it is exactly, I’ll make sure to forewarn you since I probably won’t be able to write posts that week more likely than not. I really need to find a way to get my laptop on my plane this time…

Well, take care! I look forward to seeing you all again on Saturday, where I’ll delve deeper into my psyche and the reason I feel this growth is so important!

Topical Tuesday: Travel

Hey there guys! Welcome back, or if you’re new, just a great big welcome! It’s Topical Tuesday, meaning we’re going to talk about something mild and easy. And, thanks to lurking some sites for writing prompts, I’ve got a pretty good idea of what to talk about today.

Today’s topic? Travel.

There are many reasons a person travels, and traveling can vary in national and international ways. I personally have never been out of the United States- I don’t even have a passport, quite honestly. But even if I’ve never left this country, I’ve had my fair share of travels. I’ve lived in two states on opposite sides of the continent, I’ve been to almost every time zone at least twice in my life. The only one I don’t recall ever being in is Central.

I’ve traveled for many reasons in my life. Sometimes it was a relative having a conference and bringing me along. Others, it was because of an extracurricular activity. My most memorable travels, however, are usually the ones I choose to go on to see loved ones. Today, I’m going to give you a quick idea of some of the trips I remember most.

  1. Model UN Pasadena Trip
    I mentioned earlier that I lived on both sides of the continent. When I said that, I was inferring that I lived, for a short time, in northern California. It was an iffy time in my life as I was going through puberty and had a somewhat over-controlled life set up for me. However, I did grow to enjoy the extracurriculars I was pushed into. Model UN, in particular, brings memories I’ll never forget- including finding out two years after it my crush, who I said nothing to about it, always knew and was waiting for me to tell him about liking him. Oops?
  2. A Maternal Disaster
    My second memory of traveling actually happened earlier than the Model UN trip by about a year or two. I was taken by my aunt to visit my estranged mother- and well, there was a disaster at first, but it wasn’t all bad. Still, this is a painful memory more than a pleasant one. My mother hadn’t changed at all, I came to realize- and maybe the real reason I went there was to get closure and accept that fact. I certainly grew some closure… As much as you can when you’re already living in an insane household.
  3. My Beloved
    This trip actually happened in the past year. I’ve dated online most of my life, but I’ve never met up with the people I dated… Until last June, when I went to see my boyfriend and his family for the first time in my life. Needless to say, meeting your boyfriend offline for the first time coinciding with meeting his family is a bit intimidating, but it was a wonderful trip I look forward to making again sometime this summer. To my surprise, Arizona heat isn’t as painful for me as the current heat in our tristate area. I had been to Arizona once before as a child, and remembered it very differently.

    Unlike the child I was, I’ve grown to see charm in Arizona and similar states with arid deserts. I’ve started thinking that if I move out of state, Arizona would be a good destination- and not just because my favorite person is there! No, I want to go because it’s cheaper, and it’s easier on my health problems than this muggy sauna of a state I’m stuck in.

That’s it for today. Those are some of the many travels I’ve taken in my life within our country- and I hope to travel much more in the years to come! If you’d be willing to, I’d love to see a travel story of yours in the comments. Until Thursday- take care!

Throwback Thursday: Artsy Nostalgia

Good afternoon, and welcome to my second Throwback Thursday post! I’ve been thinking a lot about nostalgia lately, to be honest. In recent months, I joined a discord group for people who used my favorite site from when I was young- .hack//chat. They’re a varied group of people, but I knew a lot of them when I was only ten, eleven years old. When I first joined I was skeptical, but now… The nostalgia brings a smile to my face as we talk occasionally about the old days and try to plan to recreate the site that was like home to me once again.

Now mind you, that’s not what this post is about. I just wanted to point out when I started thinking so hard about nostalgia in the first place. While exploring my past in memories and kindred spirits, I started thinking of other things I did back then. One such thing? That was around the same time I started using deviantART for my drawings and poems.

Just yesterday, I started lurking my first DA account (yes, I have two- I was too lazy to delete the old account, and I like looking at it from time to time). I found things that I couldn’t help but ridicule, like my art style- but I also found some poems that made me smile. In fact, I found one that brought me some nostalgia all it’s own, because it was a remake of a poem I’d written the year before at sleep away camp!

So, today, I’d like to share with you my nostalgia from my youth. I have chosen a poem and some of my albeit bad drawings to share with you. I hope you’ll appreciate their childish charm as I do- because really, that’s the main value they have.

First off, the poem: An Ode to Oranges

The lucious color
Bright, pure
The tangy taste
One knows for sure
T'is the orange, ripe
Ready to peel
What underneath the skin
Will we reveal?
I open the skin
Ready to show
The bright color
Under hazy glow.
The orange is peeled
And ready to eat
Let us enjoy
Our tiny,
But delectable feast.

Now, some really sad pictures:

What’s something that makes you nostalgic? I’d love to know!