November 28, 2016 in creation+expression, reflection+studies, storytelling+archetypes · 4 minute read

on writing.

originally drafted september 9th, 2016

writing has been my outlet for as long as i can remember, starting with bare books in elementary school. i loved the entire process of telling stories and illustrating them myself. it didn’t feel like learning— it was creative and fun. there were no rules, at least not at the time, and my love for it continued even as the work shifted to book reports. i was meticulous about creating covers, and tables of contents, and sneaking in an illustration where i could.

eventually, there was less freedom in it. schoolwork shifted to research papers on subjects that didn’t interest me. i’m fickle. i shifted to writing blogs on the internet and collaborative stories with my friends, where i had the freedom to continue writing the way i wanted to, in a way that was fun and cathartic for me. i scribbled ideas for novels and even wrote some passages. my cousins and i created entire worlds and shared them with one another.

depression.

originally drafted september 9th, 2016

i remember my mom driving me to my best friend’s house. it was dark, early autumn, and she was trying to make conversation. i was a surly preteen in response, rolling my eyes, my tone one of annoyance that told her i didn’t have the patience to suffer through talking to her. she might have asked, “what is wrong with you?” or maybe nothing at all— i don’t remember the trigger. but i remember breaking down in tears, and telling her that i didn’t know why or what was wrong, but i felt broken. i begged for help. my friend was expecting me, but we drove in circles as long as it took for me to calm down.

i remember laying in my bed, listening to the angriest i could get my hands on— godsmack, stabbing westward, garbage, system of a down. i remember sobbing. i remember screaming until my throat was raw because it was the only thing that made me feel better. i remember not knowing why i felt the way that i did.

i’m falling out of love with the internet.

originally drafted november 28th, 2016

i tried to write in the days leading up to and following the election, but writing about politics felt like shouting into the void— and writing about the mundane felt empty and hollow. i didn’t want to contribute to the noise, or give voice to my anger and anxieties.

untitled.

originally drafted november 28th, 2016

there’s a hollowness in my chest, sucking the breath from my throat and lungs. it’s a swirling void. each time i inhale, i try to remember what it’s supposed to feel like and do my best to replicate it; the contraction of my diaphragm and expansion of my lungs, the flooding of air. i try to feel the change in my blood as oxygen and carbon dioxide are exchanged, the rush of energy that’s supposed to reinvigorate my muscles.

but i feel nothing but emptiness. for a moment, i think i might cry, and when tears refuse to fall i desperately wish that i would.

next to me, he continues to speak. i can’t look at him because my face will betray me— he’s so eager and happy, and i don’t want to selfishly tear that away from him. i do my best to listen, but his words drown in the onslaught of my own thoughts. i’m barely able to keep myself afloat, and i hold onto his voice like it’s a rope. if i can keep my grip long enough, i’ll return to shore, but the rapids are testing my strength and the fibers of the rope are burning my hands.

he says my name, frustrated and tired. a second time, sharply, when i make no move to face him. i can feel my eyes burning, and now i desperately wish that i won’t cry— that i’ll be able to play this off and let him finish his story.

when i look at him, the curves of his face, i can’t help but—