Three Months Graduated. Two Months in Reality.

The last time I posted on here was September 12 (besides my European AJ post). So here’s what’s going on.

I tried to write a hundred other posts (maybe slightly hyperbolic, you get the gravity) but I’ve been paralyzed.

When I first started college I was struggling with some hardcore anxiety and depression. I was on the highest dosage of medication you can ask for and still struggling to see the light at the end of the unremitting tunnel. Come my last semester I was putting the finishing touches on my Honors Thesis which was, for lack of better terminology, an expose on the darkest moments of my life, and the nauseating wave of darkness wrapped me up in its tendrils like a wet blanket. I sat on the fringes of my life, muttering the mantra: “this is not forever, its not going to feel like this forever” until I made it to the finish line. And I clawed my way over the final mark, scraping my knees every inch of the way.

IMG_0530The past four months have been dark. For the first time since high school I was battling suicidal thoughts so deep they tainted my mornings with the stench of death. I dressed myself in routine, painted a smile onto my face, disguised the pain with mascara and nobody knew. I asked for help along the way, but once I had asked it was easier for others to overlook. Shame had convinced me that my mental prison wasn’t worthy of being brought up more than the initial plea.

So I went home one weekend to tell my mom to put me in an institution. My brain was feeding me lies quicker than the capacity I had to digest them. I was reckless with my life. I couldn’t stop imagining what the world would be like without me in it. I couldn’t imagine that there was a purpose for the pain.

I decided that if I hated the core of my being with such a longing to destroy it, then I wasn’t a fan of the one who created it either. I wasn’t sure if I even believed God was real, but I was a leader in my church. I tried to pray but the airwaves were silent. I stood in service, desperately wanting to raise my hands in worship, but paralyzed by the fear of silence. The things that used to define me — joy, passion, laughter — were foreign.

I dreaded writing anything — whether it was a blog post, a spoken word, or a paper –because I hated that I always felt like I had to write with hope when I didn’t possess any. And thats why I have disappeared from the internet for so long. It’s pretty hard to keep exposing yourself when the thought of operating at a basic human level feels too painful to bear.

**Side note: its at this part in the writing process every time that I begin to question if I am oversharing. I spent the past year and a half researching vulnerability in writing, and with that I’ve developed a stance that says there is no oversharing within the poetic bent to unify the human experience; but in practice, it is here that I begin to wonder who is reading these words and if it is too much. I struggle with the weight of simultaneously being too much and never enough, and when I consider that the whole world has these words at their fingertips, it becomes slightly overwhelming. But, less overwhelming than never sharing my heart. We live in a world that doesn’t do that enough. So with that thought, I will proceed; I just wanted all you friends to know that I am fully aware of how brutal these ponderings can be.**

If you read my last post, then you know that my recent trip to Europe was a reset button for my life. I’ve been re-learning what it means to be human. I went from being a hard-headed undergraduate to a woman with the whole world shifting under her feet.

I have become utterly uprooted.

I feel like I sprinted myself into the ground these past three and a half years. And now I am refiguring what it looks like to bloom from where I’ve buried myself.

A week after my graduation I lay on my friends couch weeping at how small I felt in the aftermath of my accomplishments, It’s a phenomenal thing that life’s victories often follow so closely on the tail of mental failure, and poured out my heart. I remember how she looked at me and told me that in the whirlwind of emotion, I had to just pick one thing. So I did. I am rebuilding as I am relearning. I don’t know what adulting is supposed to look like; but the farther along I get, the more I realize that no one else does either.

I know now that this life is not a year by year or even a day by day game, it is a literal second by second surrender of your life.I used to think I knew intuitively what righteousness looks like, but the truth is that I am so broken I barely know what the light looks like without trusting that something greater than myself will reveal it to me. So with that I say this: I have hope that my life is worthy of being lived because at the end of the race I believe that my narrative never belonged with me to begin with.

Why am I telling you all this?

The simple answer: catharsis.

Until next time. Wonder on.

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