Monday, June 9, 2014

Slacker Slacker SLACKER

So instead of working on my WIP, I'm here, blogging. Woohoo new productive procrastination method!

My bedroom (that I share with my two sisters) is currently being painted. We're *almost* finished, then my mom is going to build up some loft beds with desks underneath. I am, of course, very excited (because hello, I WILL HAVE A DESK TO MYSELF! :D)

But until then, my room is filled with boxes of clothes and books and there's paint supplies everywhere. The mess is driving me nuts. Yet that's not my biggest problem (tee hee that's what she said ;)), my biggest problem is that the only space I have in my room to write at is on my bed. Which means lots of "oh I'll just lie my head down for five minutes....oops it's been two hours". It's not conducive to the writing process at all (as shown in the below screenshot of my spreadsheet.)

(I actually have less than 50,500 words to write. I just haven't updated the spreadsheet with today's total yet.)

Other than my having no desk at the moment (and the usual day-to-day stress I've been going through since April), there is no excuse for this.

But despite all of that, I need you people to come and yell at me on Twitter to write. Harass me constantly. Seriously. I need a good kick in the rear.

Sunday, June 8, 2014

How writing helped with my depression

***Trigger warning: Mentions of depression, self-harm, and suicide. Please don't read this post if these things are going to trigger you. Here's a link to cat pictures instead: Cute Cat Pictures*

Often times as a 14 year old, I went through periods of hopelessness and anger. This was due to my struggles with depression, which came from situations in my life that I had no way of resolving and was stuck in. They weren't pleasant situations, obviously.

I've never had many friends in "real life". Many people have chose to ostracize or ignore me for any number of reasons (they're in a clique, I'm homeschooled, etc). But even with the two close friends that have stuck with me for a few years now, I didn't feel comfortable really telling them what exactly I was going through. All of this meant that I was left alone to dwell in my pit of depression and had no way of properly dealing with it. There were many times that I was tempted to cut my wrists because I thought it would help (I never cut, thankfully. I turned to clenching ice cubes or soaking my hands in cold water.)

The one thing that kept me from cutting or taking other drastic measures was writing. I would spend hours glued to my laptop writing stories that I cringe reading back on now, but at the time it was therapeutic for me. Writing gave me a purpose. It distracted me from the crap in my life. It made me feel like I was worth something.

Today I was thinking some particularly morbid thoughts about death (and no, I'm not suicidal or depressed), and it made me remember how bad I used to have depression. While I have no wishes to die right now (I've got goals and stuff for my life and people I love who love me in return), I wonder if 14 year old me would've ever gotten depressed enough to want to die. If my situations had not improved, would I have gotten desperate enough to want to end it all by killing myself?

It's a scary thought to consider, especially since I'm such a happier person now. I hate to think about the drastic measures 14 year old Kelley had at her disposal, and I'm really glad she didn't take any of them. Now that I'm here in a better place, I wish I could go back in time and show 14 year old Kelley that it did get better, that we weren't going to be stuck forever.

But I know that everything in life, good or bad, can have a lesson in it. The lesson I learned was probably this: Behind my storm clouds are rainbows. Even though it can take awhile for the storm clouds to clear, it's worth seeing it through.

And I am worth something. It's not just my writing that gives me a purpose. I'm a living, breathing human being and I deserve to be happy.

Wednesday, June 4, 2014

How am I supposed to handle reality?

It's been one of those days. The ones where I'm melancholy and a single thought about my dad's cancer can make me burst into tears.

He told me today that he's had cancer for two months now. They didn't catch it at first, but now they know for sure. He also said that he hadn't planned on telling us, but now that his hair had started falling out, he went ahead and let my 12 year old sister and I know what was happening.

Right now I'm on the vicious roller-coaster of "Oh it's going to be fine I can get through this" to "Dear God what the hell am I supposed to do?". He's had health problems since I was a small child and I was always able to handle that. Even when he had surgery to put an implant in his heart, I wasn't this emotional. Even during all of his heart problems, I was able to manage. But now that I know he has lung cancer, I'm prone to bursting into tears at any given time (I'm fighting back tears as I write this......well screw that, now I am crying).

I don't know how I'm supposed to handle this. I don't know how I'm supposed to live my day-to-day life without getting depressed and overwhelmed by the reality of this situation. My dad, the man who's already had at least two heart attacks, has congestive heart failure, skin cancer, and a physical disability now has lung cancer. How am I supposed to handle that? I don't know what the outcome of this is going to be, and that really, really scares me.

I'm trying not to let the stress of this affect my writing. When I was younger (14 and 15), I used writing as an escape to keep from getting overwhelmed with depression and SH urges. Now I'm trying to use it to temporarily forget what is happening to my family and I.

I don't know how the next few months are going to play out. I'd like to hope that I somehow figure out how to get a grip on my emotions and continue to function like a normal human being instead of giving in completely and becoming dysfunctional. But I'm the oldest of my siblings and I have certain responsibilities. I don't know how to handle everything that happens in my "normal" life and still accept the painful reality that my dad has lung cancer. I don't know how I'm going to be able to focus on dance when it starts again in August, not knowing if my dad will make it to all of my performances.

What am I supposed to do?

Monday, June 2, 2014

I'm going to accomplish stuff because life is short

Seriously, life is short. We're not guaranteed tomorrow.

I've always known that my dad's condition is fragile. He's been through a lot these past 9 years. But I want him to see me get published. He's always been quite supportive of my writing and has this idea of me getting published. And I want that to happen. I want him to see me get published, whether it be a short story or novel. I REALLY want him to see me get a novel published, but I know that getting a novel published is a long ways away from now.

After discovering he's got another cancer, I was stunned and feeling hopeless at first. But here I am...what, an hour later? Here I am feeling a new sense of motivation to hurry up and finish a story. I slacked a lot during May, but now I need to get back into writing a lot so I can go out there and get something published. I'm not saying that I need to pound out ten thousand words in a day then ship that story off. There is editing and revising (and maybe rewriting), but before any of that happens, I have to kick my butt into gear and finish something.

So I have deadline for myself: Whether it be a short story, poem, novella, or novel, I want to have something ready by the end of August. Ready as in finished, beta-read, and edited (or revised/rewritten). I want to have sent something out by September, because even if I don't get published this year, at least I can tell my parents that I've tried.

I'm not going to be such a slacker anymore.


*** This is a rambly post because I'm still very emotional right now. I'm sorry if it comes off as whiny, but I'm not in the mood for politeness and coherency. ***

Since April, my dad's been "sick". It's not unusual for him to get sick considering how weak his immune system is, but this time he didn't get better. He only got worse throughout the month and through May.

Tonight (well, this morning since it's 3 AM) my mom told my 12 year old sister and I that my dad has lung cancer and is currently going through chemo.

It didn't "shock" me at first. He's already suffered through two heart attacks, has congestive heart failure, and skin cancer. But as she got to talking about it, it finally started to settle in. My dad has another cancer, and this time it's more "severe" (he's had the skin cancer since I was little but it's never been too big of a deal for us).

Darn if it isn't already enough with what he's currently suffering from. As if these last two months haven't already been physically and mentally stressful enough on me.

I don't know what to do right now. I knew something was wrong more so than usual, but I didn't think he had cancer. I mean, what do you do when you're told your parent has another cancer? How does one even process that?

Part of me has a feeling that this knowledge of his cancer is only going to stress me out more. I don't want to slip back into a depressive funk. Been there, done that, it isn't fun. I don't want to be depressed to the point where I cannot function and write. I don't want to be depressed to the point where I'm snapping at everyone and withdrawn.

But how am I supposed to process this and keep my normal routine?