Blessings and Kindness


I’ve been busy lately and too tired to write when not busy. I just finished my second week of work, and I’m two weeks away from moving into my own apartment. My daughter is loving her new school, and I am enjoying my job. I have been social, I have been mostly sober, and I am feeling good. My life has changed quite dramatically since August 1 when I arrived back in Texas. I am happier and healthier. I am more productive and more content with myself. I do still have days where I can’t stop asking myself, “What am I doing?!?!?!?,” but they are fewer and farther apart. 

The constant sun is helping; being with family is helping; work is helping; getting out of the house is helping; refocusing on my priorities is helping; getting out of my head is helping. Things are going well, although it is a bit strange to be back home living in my old room and working at my old job. But I am not my old self, so it is different. And moving into my own apartment in a couple of weeks will certainly help shake things up.

I am also speaking at the Peace of Mind Tyler conference again this year, which is on October 7. Last year I read a chapter from my book. This year I will be participating in a longer interview segment with my dad where we will discuss what it was like when I was initially diagnosed and what it has been like for me and my parents living with my depression. I am really hopeful that it will be an insightful and helpful talk for families struggling with mental illness. 

I have been so fortunate in my life that my parents believed that my illness was just that—a real illness and not a flaw or sin. Secondly, I have been so blessed with such a supportive family. My parents and sister have repeatedly helped me when I have asked. I have always had a place to go and encouragement and support to get healthy. I have it far better than a large majority of mentally ill people, which I understand has given me a leg up in maintaining my balance. I struggle with taking my medicine at times, like many depressed people, but I also have a strong drive to work on my health through behavioral therapy and mindfulness. Others struggle much more with their motivation to do these things whereas I have always been engaged in these forms of treatment.

I have been so blessed in my life despite my illness, and I would even go so far as to say that I have also been blessed through my illness in certain ways. I understand mental struggle. I understand desperation. I understand hopelessness. And my understanding of these things has allowed me to connect with others who are suffering. My illness, combined with my family’s support and my ability to communicate through writing has given me the ability to help other depressed people find hope, peace, or connection even briefly. And I am so grateful for my opportunity to contribute to others’ healing in some small way. 

I am so pleased with what I am doing in my life at this moment. I am putting my daughter first, and that feels good. I am reconnecting with my family after several years apart. I am working for the first time in 7 years, and I am rediscovering my ability to live independently. I am not numbing myself with drugs, alcohol, or media. I am not sitting in the same spot in my room all day every day. I am not sobbing in my bed at my loneliness and hopelessness. I am meeting new people and keeping up with old friends. And everyone has been so supportive of my journey. I have been so humbled by people’s concern for my wellbeing and my happiness. I only hope that I can return all of the kindness I have received.

I would love to see any and all of you in the east Texas area at the Peace of Mind Tyler conference on Saturday October 7. I will be speaking that morning and will also have a book table set up. If you come, please stop by my table in the morning to say hello. I love seeing old friends and meeting my readers. You all are such an encouragement to me on my journey. Much love to you all.

If you’d like to attend the Peace of Mind Tyler conference, you need to register at this link, but it is free of charge to attend. I hope to see you there!

Advertisements

Grace

I don’t actually know how long it’s been since I have written. Time has been weird lately. Everything has been weird lately. And honestly, I don’t know where to begin. I think I said that last time. I am always saying that, but it’s true—I don’t know where to begin. Things have been changing. I am changing. I am tired of suffering, and yet I know that I cannot completely escape suffering. 

About a month ago I realized that I was tired of suffering where and how I was. I was ready to suffer somewhere else in some other way (ha!). I was numbing myself with drugs, alcohol, music, tv, books, sleep, distractions galore. I was sick and tired of my day to day sitting in the same spot in my room avoiding life. Change is painful, but I realized that I was in more pain where I was than the pain of dramatic change. So I jumped. 

And since making that change—the change from my life in Tacoma to life (back) in Tyler—I have felt like a failure. I have felt worthless. I have felt like all I am is a mistake and all I have done is suffer and cause suffering. I have felt lousy. I still feel lousy. And I have continued to distract myself from feeling lousy. This time I have used errands, family time, music (still), and newness to distract myself from how shitty I feel. I have made so many mistakes trying to fill the emptiness I feel—an emptiness that can only be filled, I figure now, by my acceptance of God’s grace. 

It’s funny that my middle name—a name I adamantly go by (as opposed to just my first name)—is Grace because I have a hell of a time accepting it. I can accept my unworthiness; that’s easy, but accepting love despite it? That is the seemingly impossible part. I can see myself as undeserving of love and forgiveness. What I can’t accept is that I am loved and forgiven anyway. Maybe it is the nature of my illness. Maybe it is just who I am. Maybe it is a lesson I need to learn the hard way (and, man, is it hard), but I can’t accept that God or any number of people could love, like, and accept me as I am, or that people and God could forgive the myriad mistakes I have made and will certainly continue to make. 

So what is really going on with me? Who the hell knows? I don’t. All I knew and know is that I could no longer be where I was. My main responsibility in life, outside of myself, is as a mother, and I was being a shitty mother in my own opinion. I was unhappy, and I was unable to find enough happiness and contentment to be the kind of parent I knew that my daughter needed. I was living under the weight of guilt about my parenting. I wasn’t honestly a terrible parent, but I wasn’t living up to my own expectations as a parent because I hated everything. I still feel like I hate everything at times. I feel like I have completely lost my understanding of what love is, if I ever knew what it is. I feel like I have distracted and numbed myself for so long that I have forgotten what love is. 

This makes me a terrible role model, a negligent parent, and an isolated and friendless hermit. You have no reason now (or ever really) to listen to a word I say because I know nothing. I am just trying to find my way through the suffering to some kind of joy. I am trying to find my way from hate to an acceptance of the grace available to me. And it is incredibly difficult. My illness makes it difficult, the circumstances of my life make it difficult. Maybe it is difficult for everyone. Maybe I am just telling you your own story. I don’t know because I feel like I know nothing. 

And I haven’t really said much about it all because I honestly don’t know what to say, and I am afraid to commit myself to anything. I am afraid that if I try to put a name or label on what I am going through, then I will be held to that statement by someone. If I say anything about what I am doing or what I think then I will not be free to change my mind later. And what I really want is to feel free. I want to feel free to move and change. I want to feel free to be the fluid, ever-changing person I am. I don’t know who I am becoming or where I am headed, but I know that I was at a dead end. So I turned around and went back the way I came, I guess. 

And none of you should read too much into this. There isn’t anything being intimated here. I say what I say and mean it. I don’t know what I want or how to get it. I don’t know where to go or what to do. All I know is that I had to make a change. I have to find myself again. I have to relearn what love is. I have to face the world with a clear head and open heart. I can’t hide in my bedroom any longer. I cannot blame everything on my illness nor can I pretend that I am not chronically ill. I have depression, and for some reason I seemingly cannot get rid of it, but I am also still responsible for my decisions. Some things I do because my depression is in control, somethings I do to alleviate my emptiness and blame them on depression. It’s why I keep coming back to grace. I cannot escape that I feel like I am totally unworthy of life and love. I cannot get away from the gnawing self-loathing that tells me that I do not deserve love, friendship, help, or even my next breath. I deserve death and I feel it. I feel it deeply. I am evil. I am broken. I am nothing. And yet here I am anyway, loved, with friends, and breathing.

Two nights ago I was suffering deeply. I sobbed alone in my room (my teenage bedroom in my parents’ house) for 45 minutes solid. My head was reeling, my heart was aching, my gut was churning, my arms and legs were twitching. I was completely consumed by struggle and suffering. And I begged God for respite. I begged him for relief. I begged for it immediately. I wanted escape from my intense pain. And no relief came. I continued to suffer. So I began writing. I wrote a letter to my parents and my sister—the people who are helping me and providing me with the support necessary to make this dramatic life change. I was apologizing to them for my failings. I was apologizing for my existence. It was in many ways like a suicide letter except I was apologizing for not giving in and giving them release from having to constantly rescue me.

I told them that I constantly asked God why he would let me live if I was so shitty at living and didn’t want to anyway. And I told them that God had never answered me. And living with suicidal ideation and no rhyme or reason from my creator was increasingly unbearable. I hand-wrote the letter, and as I was typing it up something happened. I was writing the part about not having received an answer, and as I was typing the word answer (literally after the “an-“) the thought burst into my mind loud enough to make me stop typing: “because I am not done with you yet.” I didn’t literally hear anything, but the thought was loud and clear just like my suicidal thoughts can be. As you can imagine, I began sobbing even harder, and I stopped typing up my apology letter. I just let it all go. 

Honestly, it isn’t that satisfactory of an answer. It might as well be a “just because” answer. But it was an answer, at least it seems like an answer to me. It was something other than the empty silence I had been feeling. I am alive because God wills it. I am alive because God has a plan for my life apparently. I have little faith in my ability to fulfill his purpose for me, honestly. I still feel lousy. I still feel like a complete failure. But I am still alive, and that has to mean something, right? I mean for someone like me who finds herself wanting to be dead more regularly than the average person, my survival must mean something. Right? It has to or else I should just die. If I am not supposed to be alive for a purpose then who cares if I live or die? There is a purpose for my life. There is a meaning to my continual survival despite my inability to fully escape suicidal thinking.

And there is grace. There is grace for all my unworthiness. I don’t deserve it, but if I did then it wouldn’t be grace. I just have to learn how to embrace the grace given to me. I have to accept it from people and from God. I have to learn to love myself again. I have to learn that I am worthy of love. I have to learn that I am forgiven. I have to learn that I don’t have to do anything to be loved—I am already loved despite my failings. I have to learn that I was named Grace for a reason. 

What is next for me? Who the hell knows? How do I end this rambling on my transitional state? How do I begin the next chapter and what will it look like? I don’t know and I am not looking any farther ahead than my next word. I don’t even know what my next sentence will be, but I know that I am moving toward something greater than where I have been. I know that I am on my way to being a better parent. I am on my way to learning what love is. I am on my way to learning to accept the grace that has already been given to me. I am learning to forgive myself for my very real mistakes and I am learning to let go of the guilt I feel for things that are not really my fault. I am learning who I am, and I am going to learn what my purpose is. I am going to not just change, but I am going to grow. And none of this would be possible without grace. And maybe that is why the name Grace follows me everywhere I go. Because I need to remember than despite the lies my depression tells me, despite the mistakes I make in an attempt to escape my emptiness, grace is available to me. I just have to reach out and accept it.

Backwards

Where do I begin? The beginning? Which is what? This has been a strange week for me. I just picked up and left my home and my life with my daughter to see if I could do better without drugs and alcohol. I was not deeply into either, but I was most definitely numbing myself with them. I was ignoring things with them. I was distracting myself from things with them. I was using drugs and alcohol for a purpose other than fun. I felt like a crap mom. I was loving but that is about it. I was negligent, I was careless, I was uninterested. I was a crap mom other than love and hugs. Those are important but so are baths and healthy meals and clean clothes. I was getting more and more depressed as I saw what I was doing. My world was getting smaller and smaller. I had no friends. None. I had no life. None. I sat in my room all day every day just waiting for the next day. I hardly went anywhere or did anything. I listened to music, read books, watched tv while I drank or smoked or both. I was meditating, doing diabetes care and paying bills, but that is about it. I had no life of my own. I was unhappy. I was discontent. I was aimless. I was just existing without purpose. 

And it had to change. I had to change. So I left. I didn’t feel strong enough to change where I was, so I figured that I would change somewhere else. And the only place I had to go was home. So here I am in my parents house—in my teenage bedroom—writing about change when it sort of feels like I am in the exact same spot I was at 20. Living at home, sitting in the alcove of my bedroom, trying to figure out where I belong and what I want in life. It is a drag to be honest. This isn’t fun, even if it is comforting. I want to just be more than I am. I want to be driven and successful. I want to be normal and independent. I am none of those things. I don’t know what I am at all. I feel like a failure. I have failed at adulthood. I have failed at life. I don’t feel suicidal but I do feel like non existence would at least be less painful than this. 

I don’t know where to go or what to do, so I am focusing on what I have to do, which is take care of my kid as best I know how. Be a good parent. Get her into school, get her with a doctor, give her baths and brush her teeth, make her read books, and play games with her. I don’t have to do anything immediately but be a good parent. A better parent than I have ever been. And once I get that going I can figure out what is next. 

Going backwards to move forward is difficult. No one wants to go backwards ever. But here I am back in my room at my parents’ house. Sitting in the same alcove where I sat as a teenager. Looking out the same window with the same existential questions: Who am I? Why am I here? And I don’t know the answers. I don’t know who I am or why I am alive. But I am someone and I do have a purpose, I hope. And I guess that I had better keep looking for the answers unless I want to keep having to go backwards.

Always Wanting More

“My life is great, but I’m so bored with this life. If only I could move on to another.”

I began keeping a journal in earnest at the age of 13. And I wrote the phrase above at that age. It really stands out to me as a feeling that I still feel at times. It stands out to me as the spark of my vulnerability. This feeling–this discontent–seems to be a place where depression sunk its claws into me at a young age. I remember always being a daydreamer. I rarely created stories for others; I always imagined myself in other places or situations. I was always wondering where I would eventually fit in and feel content. I was happy. I was talkative. I was engaged. I wasn’t popular but I was mostly known. I wasn’t isolated specifically, but I was never satisfied. I wanted more. I wanted to feel full. And I didn’t. I felt lonely or I distracted myself from my loneliness.

As I got older I spent less time distracted from my angst. I had terrible luck with boys. Maybe it was the pastor’s daughter thing. That’s the easiest explanation to give and the hardest to accept. Because, to me, it means I wasn’t enough. I didn’t fit. A minor detail derailed me from getting to just be me. I was always something else–a daughter–first. And I was bored. I was tired. I was over it.

So why didn’t I leave? Why didn’t I go far off to college? I was scared. And I felt like I shouldn’t. And that I wasn’t allowed to. I would be alone. I would be more isolated. What if I never found anything better? I was young. I was naive. I was already crumbling under the strain of my illness. I was already beyond saving it seems.

When I met someone when I was in college who neither knew or cared whose daughter I was, it was enlightening. For the first time in 5 years I didn’t doubt the motivations of a friend. I trusted my closest girlfriends, but even they only knew me in the context where I had grown up. And as I longed to distance myself from that context, I pulled away even from them. I had plenty of “friends” who I spent time with but performed for.

And I had this one friend who didn’t know or care about my context. He seemed to like me and what I chose to share about myself rather than what ran down the gossip pipeline. I could be weird. I could be sad. I could be dramatic. I could be dumb. It was all okay.

But with my college and sorority friends things were different. I began performing all the time. I could no longer distract myself from my feelings of isolation. I was always pretending to be more palatable than I was. As I lost full control though, I began to see rejection everywhere. I became paranoid. My college friends were disgusted by me. My roommate hated me. My parents didn’t understand me. My sorority wanted to humiliate me. My one friend didn’t really care. No one cared. Not enough. And I couldn’t escape.

There was nowhere to go. I would always be a daughter first and a person second. I would never find love because I wasn’t lovable. I would never be accepted because people were cruel. I would always be bored to madness with the life I had been born into. I would never feel full and I would always be left wanting more.

In truth, there was no escape at that point. But there was rescue. For me, there was rescue.

I still have a wandering heart. I’m still a daydreamer. I’m a romantic. I’m a sap. I still get bored. And it is surprising to see those things in myself 22 years ago. It is strange to see how young I was when my vulnerability—although not my depression—showed up on paper. Depression is like a vine. It begins in one spot and grows and entangles itself, latching onto any vulnerability that it can use to strengthen itself.

I haven’t changed dramatically from my 13 year old or 19 year old selves, I have just adjusted my life to accommodate my personality and how it makes me vulnerable to my illness. I try to call depression out for what it is. I’m not unloveable. Sometimes depression just makes it hard for me to see or feel love. I’m not unacceptable, I’m just stubbornly myself. I’m not only something in relation to some other person, I am singular. I’m just smarter and better equipped. I know the difference between me and my depression, or at least I try my best to tell the difference. It’s a constant game to parse through my thoughts and feelings and label them as real or imagined. But the work is worth it. I get to walk the fine line of being myself—a person who lives with and is influenced by depression—and being the depressed woman. Depression is always there, it’s just a constant battle for control.

Don’t keep your struggles secret like I did. Don’t keep your feelings of isolation hidden. Depression will use those feelings but they are easier to twist and distort if they are secret. If you don’t tell anyone then depression will manipulate you into something else. Much love and strength to you as you parse though your own feelings to discover truth.

(No) Mistakes


The other day I went through the first photo album I ever made—like an actual album with the glue and plastic covers. I made it sometime in the early 2000s and it is filled with pictures from my freshman year of high school through the first half of my senior year. They are fun and cute generally—lots of plays and dances. But that was high school for me. That and church choir. 

One picture stood out to me though. I was at my friend’s house sometime in the fall or winter of my senior year, so 1999. She took a picture of me sitting at her computer (a dinosaur). You can’t see what I am working on, but I remember very clearly. I was filling out an application to Baylor University. I hadn’t told anyone I was going to do it.

It had been in my mind that I might because the friend whose house I was at was planning to go there, although I’m not sure that she had made that public knowledge either, and my best friend was going to go there. Everyone thought that I was going to go to The University of Oklahoma. I had already been accepted, but I didn’t have any friends going to OU. I was afraid to go off on my own. I was already depressed. I didn’t think that I had it in me to strike out on my own. I felt too weak.

My parents were quite surprised when I said that I was going to attend Baylor, but they let me make my own decision. I thought that I would be happy because I was going to room with my best friend. At OU, where my sister had gone, I could never do and be all that she was, and I didn’t really want to anyway. But I felt that I would be expected to be like her. I would join her sorority and everyone would expect me to be her all over again. And if there is one thing I am not it is my wonderful sister. So I went to Baylor. 

If I thought of myself as having made mistakes in life, this would probably be at the top of the list. I felt like I was suffocating there. Everyone felt fake. I remember people from my hometown talking to me that had completely ignored me my entire life. It felt weird. It felt unreal. I was already losing touch with reality, so rushing to join a sorority was practically surreal. It was a bad trip. It felt fun at times, but it always had the worst come down. 

I remember being in physics class and a boy who had never talked to me turned to me the first day I had on my sorority shirt and started chatting me up. I wanted to punch him. I hadn’t existed without those greek letters. And it made my life seem so meaningless. I felt so alone. I would sneak out behind my dorm and smoke cigarettes, which I wasn’t supposed to do (sorority rules) along with chewing gum, walking on grass, forgetting to say hello to people I didn’t know. It was ridiculous. It was a game that made me want to kill myself. Literally. I chose death over that life. 

Some people love that stuff. I don’t. But I was born into it and too young and unsure to step away. I thought that that life was my only option. I hated all the rules. I hated being required to be friends with people because of a social organization. 

After my suicide attempt—which happened the week of our initiation, I received one message from my “sisters.” It was a small card with some generic flower or pleasant phrase mailed to my parents’ house. Inside were 2 sentences. 1. They hoped that I felt better soon. 2. Could I please return all of my sorority stuff so it could be given to someone else?

I doubt I need to analyze or explicate that for you. People are strange. Priorities get skewed and reputations become more important that people. But some people love that stuff. 

So when I look at the picture of me applying to Baylor, I wish so desperately that I could scream at myself, “Stop! Don’t do it! It’s the beginning of the end! Run away! Stop!” But I can’t. I can’t do anything about the past. 

But I have to remind myself that I might have missed some good things if I hadn’t been in that situation. I met a couple of people then who have made very happy at different times in my life, and I don’t know if I would have met them if I hadn’t been so miserable where I was. I also wrote quite a bit during that time as a way to escape how miserable I was. I read a lot, and I listened to a lot of music. I found ways to escape until I felt I wanted to escape forever.

I’m not quite sure what this post is about. It’s about me. And what should you take from it? Maybe that high pressure social constructs can drive a depressed person over the edge. Maybe that sometimes we get so caught up in the game that we miss an opportunity to see people who are in need. And maybe some people just don’t care. And that’s okay, I guess. I had enough who did care, and I certainly learned a lot about friendship and truth. 

I look at this picture of me willingly asking to walk into the darkness without knowing that it would be so dark. I didn’t know that this was a mistake. I didn’t know that things would get so terrible that I would lose my mind. And so I don’t think of it as a mistake. I think of it as a turning point. The moment where I took a steep path down into a shrouded valley. A valley that I came back out of. A valley I try my best to stay away from but I don’t always succeed. And this picture is when I took the quickest path there. 

No regrets. No mistakes. Just choices and consequences. Just life. Good and bad, keep moving forward. 

Just a passing thought…

 

There’s this Cure lyric that I laugh at, which goes “the way the rain comes down hard/that’s how I feel inside.” It’s from the song “Open.” I laugh because it is so dramatic, but at the same time I get it, too. Today has been beautiful outside, but I have felt rainy inside. And I’m working and doing the things I’m supposed to do, but I don’t want to do anything. Because I’m more concerned with the existential matters of love and purpose. Dishes and dinner seem unnecessary, but the joke is that they aren’t. I have to do them anyway or deal with the undone consequences. So I go and I do, but inside is not only a creative deluge but also an emotional downpour.

“Madame Bovary c’est moi”


I’m in the process of transcribing old (16+ years old) poetry I have handwritten in a journal to my computer so that I have digital copies of everything I have written. I started at the beginning; the first poem is about a heartbreaking encounter with my crush at 18. The second and third are about 2 other crushes (is one love ever enough?). Finally, though, something interesting comes out in the fourth poem titled “Roses and Shoelaces.” The poem is as terrible as the title mostly, and I remember writing it. I began by just writing about what I could see in my room, but it developed into something more introspective. In the fifth short stanza I write, “Oh, Emma—how adamant I was out of fear/ and truth made me silent with realization/and who is more miserable/the person who makes mistakes or/the person who never has the opportunity to?/…/sometimes I wonder if my/blood still pulses/only my unsatisfied and unacknowledged/passion proves my existence.” 

This was after my Madame Bovary epiphany (which you can read about in my post “Art at 18: Three Vignettes here). It was a big moment for me–my first adult epiphany. Maybe it was depression; my epiphanies often feel ephiphantic only because of depression. This one took place in my senior English classroom in highschool. And I can still see the room in my mind, but only set up in the specific Socratic circle we were working in that day. If my teacher was sitting at 12 o’clock, then I was at 4. And it hit me so hard. I wanted to cry. I was Emma Bovary, too. 

In the poem above I cover it all–I was adamantly, vocally opposed to everything that she represented until I felt like I was slapped in the face by the truth that I was everything I hated about her. And then I shut up. I was stunned into silence. 

But then I get to the real meat of the poem: “and who is more miserable/the person who makes mistakes or/the person who never has the opportunity to?”

I felt like I was Emma Bovary–I had so much that I felt that I could not express. I wanted to experience the world rather than stay stuck in the bubble of my hometown and upbringing. And I felt like I couldn’t. I couldn’t go out and live. There were already too many rules holding my back, and I would have to break them to live as myself. And I felt that I was more miserable than Emma Bovary. I should have known then that I was headed for dark times. I felt that I was as miserable as she was, despite all the “good” things that I had in my life. I was so unfulfilled. I felt so empty. I had friends, family, comfort, and yet I didn’t have happiness. 

Not long after I read Madame Bovary, I read another book that was very important to me: Henderson the Rain King by Saul Bellow. A quote from that book does a better job of describing how I was feeling than I can: “My soul is like a pawn shop. I mean it’s filled with unredeemed pleasures….” I felt like I had collected so many dreams that I could never fulfill. I knew that they “broke the rules,” but they were my dreams. And even if they were mistakes, I thought that I ought to be able to make them.

And I felt so stiffled–I felt like I was being smothered to death. I questioned if being alive was enough to feel alive. I wondered if I was living or just walking around dead. But my heart longed for more. My dreams of living my passions kept me going, just like my music and my online friends kept my going for the next 9 months. I felt like I could be my Emma Bovary self with them. I felt like I was accepted. And it felt so wonderful, but I was also secretive and guilt ridden. I felt like I was living a double life–the life that made me happy and the life that I was supposed to live. 

And when I felt like I could no longer keep up the charade–when I felt like I also couldn’t have what I truly wanted–I went full Emma Bovary.

I guess I write all this because it is like putting together a puzzle. There were so many clues about what was happening to me. There were so many opportunities to see the pieces and get help, but no one could see the finished puzzle. No one knew what all those pieces would be when they were all put together. And one different piece could have changed everything. One change and the outcome could have been different. Or maybe not. There is no way to know now. 

Now I can only work with what I have. Now I can piece together my story, but I can’t change it. I can only change the future by making change in the present. But I can also look to the past to determine how to act in the present in order to get to the future I want. I am still an Emma Bovary, I think, as awful as she is. I try to be less selfish, but my heart is still like a pawn shop. 

Live the life you want. Make the change you need to be happy, but also know that if depression is lurking in your life, then it will overcomplicate everything. It will lead you down dark paths. It will offer you what you want and then take away everything you ever had. Don’t let depression control you. Take control of your life and your dreams. And maybe you won’t be an Emma Bovary.

I also wrote a poem on this topic. You can read “Mistakes” here.