This Was A Day: April 11

4:47am – My bunny clunks his bowl because it is empty. I forgot to give him the rest of his serving of food. I wake up and write a memo on my phone in order to document the event for this blog post—and then I forget to feed the bunny.

8:00am – The alarm sounds and I change it to let me sleep for another hour. I briefly get up and pour food into my bunny’s dish. I doze to the sound of his noms.

9:00am – Up and at ‘em. Shower and food. I can’t wait to go grocery shopping again so I have options and don’t feel like shit from eating shit. I’ve been eating leftover pizza for days.

12:06pm – I’m browsing flyers for the grocery stores and am amused by the Bulk Barn one. I’m also appreciative of their consistent and minimalist design. Excellent branding. My phone rings—a private number—and I hesitate to pick it up. Something about the gas company. I scrawl a note on the top of the Bulk Barn flyer and feel like a middle-aged stay-at-home home-owner. I need to check the lease for stipulations about the gas supply and changes and whatnot, and possibly contact the landlords. Fuck, I’m such an adult and it doesn’t even faze me.

12:20pm – I study for a bit, waste some time, study some more. My motivation is low today. Yesterday I was hungover and reviewed all my notes, so who knows what’s bogging me down today.

2:45pm – I leave for my exam since the room is in a building I’ve never entered, and I don’t want to get horribly lost and late.

2:50pm – This building smells weird. It’s large and open, with a concrete and wood design; that “modern” look. Despite the walls of windows on the exterior, the interior has very little natural light. The fluorescents bother me. A classmate calls out my name and I chat and review with two of them.

3:15pm – We enter the exam room. Some other students are in it, studying, and I loudly ask my classmates, “Do they know we have an exam in here?” I know they aren’t also taking the exam; I remember faces and have never seen these ones, even on test days. (They leave in a few minutes.)

3:30pm – Exam starts. Prof spends ten minutes reading through the instructions and the questions for the entire exam.

4:25pm – I’m finally let out in the first batch of students. This prof only lets us out of exams in designated blocks, like every half hour, to avoid multiple disruptions. Instead of a trickle of students leaving, he gets a wave of them. I don’t know if it’s more efficient, but it’s at least predictable. I think I nailed the exam.

4:30pm – A building on my street catches my eye. I write a quick poem, or poem fragment. When do poems start and end? Do we poets simply collect lines and put them together? Like word weavers creating textiles of text.

5:00pm – 8:45pm – In between some half-assed work on an assignment due tomorrow, I don’t do much. I’m anxious to get on the bus to pick up my boyfriend from the train station.

9:20pm – The bus comes. Late.

9:40pm – I forgot about the construction going on at a key intersection , which renders it completely closed off. The bus makes a detour and goes behind the brewery, which is right near the train station. Darkness engulfs everything and I can’t tell where I am, where the bus can stop, where this detour goes. I’m lost. I’m having a panic attack. I’m furiously texting my boyfriend and one of my friends.

9:53pm – We pass the first street sign I recognise and I’m way farther east than I should be. I try to calm down, and then I get off the bus. I begin walking back west, still furiously texting my friend. I ask if I can call her. I panic to her.

9:54pm – “We’re gonna come get you.” My friend and her dad are angels. I am lost and afraid and this moment makes me understand faith. It seems that my attempts to get to the Windsor VIA Rail train station have had hiccups lately.

10:05pm – I wait inside a grocery store and ponder the fruit and hummus. My friend and I call again and I count the number of people in the store. Her dad says there are less than 10—he’s correct. There are 8, plus myself.

10:10pm – They arrive and I’m so relieved and grateful I could cry. My dissociation is high. My body feels like a piece of metal guided by a cosmic magnet. They drive me to the train station and offer to drive me and my boyfriend back to my house. I say, “Thank you,” often and send out prayers along the magnetic waves keeping me moving.

10:30pm – I’m hungry and my boyfriend “can stand to eat something,” so we head to the Chinese restaurant at the corner. Most of the others have closed between 8:00pm and 10:00pm. The servers here always seem disgruntled and fed up, but the food is okay and relatively fast. I order the chicken soo guy and my boyfriend orders the beef with dried orange peels. Both are tasty. Both will be leftover for breakfast.

Boyfriend’s fortune cookie fortune: “You will be generous and others will be generous to you.”

My fortune cookie fortune: “You will get a promotion.”

11:00pm – A movie and cuddles and I’m glad he’s here in my arms again and the day is done.

An adventure and a half because I got lost today.

Therapy Diary: Day 5

Blue and white paint splattered and dripping down a black wall.

Pre-Session

I’ve had a gruelling morning. My co-worker and I were attempting to make some changes on our employer’s website—something that should be easy for me—but ran into obstacle after obstacle after obstacle. All I’m gonna say: if you hire a third party to register and set up your website, make sure you save the credentials for logins to your registrar and host. Fuck. We had hoped to relax after an assumed quick fix by watching a movie, but didn’t have time to do so.

I’ve been plagued by migraines all week, but today has been alright. Some slight discomfort, but nothing as terrible as Monday or Tuesday. Last night I didn’t sleep very well, unfortunately. The initial stages of falling asleep seem to be the most difficult for me, all the getting comfortable and feeling restful. On top of that, my sleep was broken up a bunch.

Initially, my session was scheduled for last Friday, but the headcold I had came first and I prioritised sleep above therapy. It was a good decision. The offices then bumped my appointment up an hour—a small scheduling error on their part—and I’m glad for that. Means there’s less time for me to build up any nervousness.

Today, I plan on telling my therapist that I’m not sure where to go from here. That I feel like I’m talking in circles. A few of the exercises she gave me have helped immensely, so I want to get more of those. They’re concrete. I can work with them more easily than with abstract thought mechanisms.

In my class yesterday, my professor gave me the best definition of Freud’s id, ego, and super ego theories. I think I’m going to mention it to my therapist. I think my super ego is overdeveloped, in a sense, and has suffocated both my id and ego. Like an iceberg turned upside down.

I’ve also been dwelling in a lot of dissatisfaction and discouragement. And I want to mention how terrible I am with setting goals and my whole attitude toward them in general.

We’ll see what happens. I have about an hour to kill until I need to go to the building. I chose the 3pm slot instead of the 2pm slot, since I figured I wouldn’t face the dilemma of “Do I knock on the door? Should I wait elsewhere?” if the 2pm slot remains free—which it might not.

Maybe I should do some yoga. Or take a shower. I definitely need to eat lunch. I’m still nervous, but this time because I’m not sure where or how to continue. But I know that the best method to resolve this is not to just stop going—it’s to mention it to my therapist. The key is communication, after all.

I’ve been craving junk food all week. Maybe I’ll get something tonight. But maybe I won’t.

Session

I arrive a little late and the door is propped open. A gentle knock. The standard routine—she signs me in and I remove my coat and boots. Lotus position.

Head nodding. Some resources to reference back to. I feel very good about myself.

I’m understanding more this time around. My nerves have dissipated. I don’t think I’m ready yet to dive into one of the techniques she’s had me go through each session, but it’s in my mind and I’m aware of it. That’s already a step in the direction of utilising it. It’s like a habit I have to pick up.

A good analogy. Praise. A sparkly movement in my shoulders.

She sits beside me to explain the resources and it’s the closest we’ve ever been to each other. Her winged eyeliner is on fleek omg. All of our interactions have been in this dim room, her a few feet away in one chair or the other. I’ll re-type these sheets when I have some spare time this weekend. One of them looks especially helpful, but I want to change the format. I’ll give the current column set-up a try, since there’s no harm in trying it that way. But I get the feeling a mind-map layout would work better for me.

Nebulous thoughts.

She moves my awareness elsewhere and it confuses me. I realise how comfortably out of my body I’ve been this week. My emotional reactions have been stunted somatically. I think that’s the next journey to take.

2 weeks until the next one. I think the time to process and experiment and put in effort by myself will help me.

Post-Session

I think I’ll treat myself to some greasy, carb-filled food today—simply because I want to and don’t feel bad about wanting it. Maybe a buffalo chicken poutine from a small restaurant around the corner.

Since I didn’t cry this time, and I don’t feel shaken up or moved around, I can dive right into some schoolwork I have.

Progress. Onward.

Therapy Diary Day 5

Therapy Diary: Day 4

Blue and white paint splattered and dripping down a black wall.

Pre-Session

I woke up late. I had a meeting with my employer and co-workers beforehand. My appointment is earlier in the day, which is alright. I don’t have a chance to feel anxious for the session. But I also don’t have much time to get ready for it, either. I eat breakfast and shower late, and then arrive 5 minutes after my appointment is supposed to start. At least this time around, the door is open and I don’t feel awkward approaching it.

Session

I have trouble focusing and being present. Some of what I say feels like verbatim repetition of earlier sessions, but again: patterns. The time flies by quickly, despite the long bouts of silence from me. In a way, my counsellor helps guide me through a meditative exercise. I tell her often that it is difficult, and that having difficulties learning something new makes me feel frustrated. My crying this session is less violent. Just tears and a head-filled sadness and emotional release.

I talk about my body image issues and receive tools for combating my hyper-critical thoughts and judgements about myself. She emphasises balance over removal of the thoughts.

A bridge analogy. Fluidity between extremes. A flow and an ebb between deep sea and shallow shore, rather than a metronome tick between left and right. I think of the moon and its cycles from full visibility to full shadow. Something in me feels peace, but I don’t know where and have trouble accessing it.

Post-Session

I feel like I learned the most in this session. It will be three weeks until I’m in here again, the dimmed light and green walls making me feel almost safe. Instead of leaving and feeling a little disoriented, unsure, and emotionally shuffled, I have taken away knowledge. I am more aware of how to be mindful.

I return to my journal, left closed after the page from the first session. I want to make lists and find the thoughts I need to balance out the ones I currently have. There is effort needed. Pure effort. A desire to make a change. Learning how to try has been one of the hardest lessons for me to start, let alone master.

I can think of a future.

I am motivated to look forward to something.

This is definitely progress.

The fourth session in my therapy experience.

Therapy Diary: Day 3

Blue and white paint splattered and dripping down a black wall.

Pre-Session

I don’t want to go today, but it’s too late to cancel without needing to pay a cancellation fee. I don’t know why I don’t want to go, but I’m not thinking hard on it.

I know I’m doing something good for myself. I am reminding myself to be patient, to be kind to myself, to be mindful of how I express and feel and react.

When I arrive on the hour for the beginning of my session, the door is closed. The meeting room adjacent, with its windows and boardroom table and multiple chairs, has a few people sitting around in it. I hesitate outside the door. Should I knock? I knocked last time, but something tells me I should stop. I kill time by going to the bathroom and then come back. My instincts were right. I hear voices near the door and it opens. I give a small smile to the person coming out of the door, and feel awkward standing right outside. I know how it feels to walk out of that room. She smiles but I can tell she was crying. I know the puffy face. I still don’t know the protocol. Perhaps, for future sessions, I’ll wait around, be a few minutes late, and see if the door is open when I arrive.

Session

At this point, I feel like I’m repeating myself. Didn’t I say this before? Didn’t I relay this information already? But these are patterns, not verbatim repeats and replays. And all these things I feel, all these parts of me, have one source. Not multiple sources. There are roots in a poisoned ground, and all these shaking leaves, these rushing winds past branches, come up from those series of roots.

I am a computer and my files are being defragmented. I am being rearranged, and it’s taking time, but once the process is done–not forever, of course; it will require maintenance–but once it is completed this first time, this long-haul and messy process, I can access things more easily.

There is nothing inherently wrong with me. I have just been broken so many times without any repairs.

Metaphors, analogies, comparisons. Because emotions are hard to talk about.

Post-Session

When I return home, I notice Netflix has added Inside Out. Watching it—this was the first time—was a serendipitous moment. Content from my session lined up with this beautiful, fantastic, and (I believe) important movie. I feel a bit better. I don’t do much else for the day, but that’s okay with me. I need to be alone and let my emotions do their thing, my files rearrange, my branches shed their leaves and regrow.

Still nervous and scared.

The third session in my therapy experience.

Bigender Basics

Some days are chocolate chip cookies: primarily sumptuous dough, but interspersed with rich, tiny clumps of semi-sweet chocolate.

Other days are full-on triple-chocolate cookies, with a cocoa-enriched dough, hunks of chocolate throughout, and a drizzle of melted vanilla sweetness on top.

And even other days, there are some none-chocolate cookies on my plate and other double-chocolate cookies that I pick from. I nibble at both, but never eat an entire cookie.

Another analogy: hot and cold. I put on layers of sweaters and camis and button-ups, or undershirts and t-shirts and sweaters and coats. I can wake up and the weather is below freezing. The sun comes out. The temperature changes. I become warm. I started the day cold, and tried to be warm. Then I warmed up, and now I want to be cold.

The basics are this: I am never one or the other. I am always two. I can lean toward one side of the spectrum, or I sway back and forth between them.

For me, being bigender means I am a boy and a girl. I can be both at once. Sometimes I’m one for the day, sometimes I’m the other. Sometimes I’m both all day, neither one of them exclusively.

Pronouns and gender-specific identifiers cause me the most issues. I can never tell on any given day which of the genders I’m more inclined to until someone identifies me as one of them. Sometimes the person who identifies myself as one is myself—when I look in a mirror, or when I feel my body move. In person, I’m only ever labelled one gender. I haven’t exactly come out to many people I know in person, mostly because they won’t see me very differently. (As my boyfriend put it when I told him: “You’ll still be you.”) And if they will look at me differently, in a negative light, then it doesn’t matter that they know or don’t know.

I don’t exactly correct people when they misgender me, because the majority of society I interact with associates gender with a body.

gender =/= body parts

I pass most easily as one gender on the spectrum, and not very easily as the other I identify with. And this disappoints me. I put in effort to make myself look a way that makes me feel comfortable when I look at myself and move around. But most people don’t notice this. I’m still gendered as the other one by people who don’t know me.

It isn’t easy to have people misgender me on a daily basis when I fluctuate so much between two of them and it’s very much an internal experience.

Sometimes I misgender myself because I’ve been told I’m one for my entire life, even when I started thinking I wasn’t just that one when I was 13.

The binary view of genders in modern society is my biggest obstacle, aside from my body dysmorphia. There’s a resistance to spectrum and dualities.

I feel like I can’t identify as transgender because I can identify with the gender I was designated at birth. I’m able to. But it isn’t the only one. Of course, I still hold internal transphobia and stigma; I’m trying to unlearn the “you can only be one” mentality in terms of gender identity. A transwoman doesn’t need to transition to be a transwoman. A transgender person doesn’t need to go from one binary to the other to be transgender—they can fluctuate along a spectrum, too, even if it’s between two socially enforced binaries (as I do).

Internalised bigotry. I think a lot of marginalised individuals still hold internalised bigotry, whether it’s sexism or homophobia, or transphobia or all the others. ¯\_(ツ)_/¯

All I’m trying to do is make peace with myself and how I view myself. Being bigender is one of those ways I’m legitimately achieving that peace.

Basics of a non-binary gender: bigender.

Therapy Diary: Day 2

Blue and white paint splattered and dripping down a black wall.

Pre-Session

I’m nervous again but I get the feeling that this is normal and will possibly lessen as I get more comfortable with this interaction and entire shift in mindset.

Before my session, I run a few errands. It is 3 minutes before my appointment time and the door is closed. Last session, it was propped open. I am nervous, hesitate, then lightly knock on the door. My hands are overflowing with my overcoat and personal effects—I thought I would be late and rushed to get here, despite the fact that the two places I went were in the same hall. I am grateful for the “Just a sec!” response. I put things away and the door opens.

Session

I feel confident.

And I know I’m faking most of it.

I try to pay attention to some things, but I am hyper-aware of myself and how my gaze blanks out straight ahead of me, toward a filing cabinet and a poster that has Comic Sans in the titles.

We are always growing, changing, and learning—even the people who are unkind, or seem to judge and reject us.

Sit with an emotion to see what it does.

Be kind to yourself.

I blank on things to say and talk about. I don’t know why, but I’m not going to explore the why. I’m only going to explore what I want to talk about. For next session, I hope I can remember the ones I forgot for this one. And I hope I can have the courage to mention the ones I was still too afraid to mention.

Post-Session

Am I a fake? This is all pointless and I’m failing at it. I can’t open up enough. I can’t get comfortable and let myself do this. I feel blocked and resistant and I don’t know why. I think a part of me doesn’t want to get help, or be helped, or learn something about help and being helped.

And of course I blame myself for this. As if something is wrong with me, when really there isn’t anything wrong or different or abnormal. Everyone I know has mentioned the difficulty of starting therapy.

I still feel like I’m the only one doing something wrong.

Even safe spaces have adjustment periods.Therapy Diary: Day 2--Blog post about my personal experience going into therapy for my mental health. Day 2 = The second session.

This Was A Day: February 13

I slept terribly last night. Packing until 1am, after waiting for laundry, and then the excitement of returning home. I wake at 6:30am and rush to get things done: shower, breakfast, brush teeth, make and pack lunch, check my luggage to ensure everything is packed, get dressed, grab a bus ticket, and stuff my phone in my pocket. I leave the house, dragging my suitcase, bundled with my winter coat against the -35C weather, and my backpack loosened to accommodate the extra bulk.

When I wait at the stop, unfortunately one without an enclosure, I pace back and forth until I remember that jus wastes energy. My breath is collecting on my scarf and moistening the area around my mouth.

The bus is late. I have just under an hour until my train leaves and the bus takes around 20 minutes to get to the station. When it finally arrives, I sit next to an Asian girl who also has a large suitcase. I place my backpack on the seat between us and spend the ride avoiding the sun shining into my face through the opposite window.

I see the parking lot and the series of loft apartments. I pull the cord and the driver stops. After I thank him and cross the intersection, I realise I left my backpack on the bus. A blonde girl, who also had some luggage, was right behind me. The bus has a stop a little further down the road, just after another intersection, and I ask the girl if I could trust her with my suitcase. She said yes, and I sprinted like all hell to catch the bus waiting at the next stop.

I wasn’t fast enough. It is me, after all. I suck at physical activity.

There I am, on Wyandotte and Walker, wailing and cursing; wondering what the hell I was going to do without my wallet, ID, subway fare, lunch; looking up the phone number for Windsor Transit to see if I could locate my backpack or inform them about the incident. I am too upset to acknowledge if I’m crying or cursing or simply screaming, “No, no, no, no!” over and over. I try to collect myself and think straight, planning what to do, but I am certainly distraught as I walk back to the girl watching my suitcase.

And then I see with her the Asian girl who I had sat beside on the bus. Holding my backpack.

I wish I could have done something more than thank her too many times and ask if I could hug her (which she obliged). Maybe I should have offered to buy her Tim Horton’s.

I arrive at the train station, my lungs aching from the sudden aggressive use after sprinting so hard. I empty my water bottle, re-fill it, and step outside. The station is rather crowded and I need to cool down.

When the train arrives, I get to my car and sit in my seat. I settle in easily, putting on my music, adjusting my coat and sweater, and placing my bag securely between my feet. My phone is at hand, since I have my ticket saved on there. I bring out a book—The Silver Chair by CS Lewis—and finally get settled in by removing my glasses.

The attendant scans my ticket and I return to my book. I hope to finish it this train ride. It isn’t long and I don’t have much to do, after all.

The seat beside me stays unoccupied for a couple hours—the train ride is just over 4 hours long—and halfway, when we reach London, a chatty woman gets on with a friend of hers.

I’m going to blame the snow for my distraction. Also, probably hunger. That egg salad wrap in my bag has been on my mind since I got onto the train.

My timing for the ride and my reading ability is fairly accurate: just as I’m reaching Toronto, my destination, I’ve finished the book. I prepare for the terminal, the new renovations, and hope for no confusion as I try to get to the subway.

After a sign on printer paper directs me toward the TTC, I follow more permanent ones. The construction has lessened compared to my last visit to the VIA station.

As I get into the junction between Union and the TTC, I spot the girl who had picked up my backpack. She’s heading toward the University-Yonge line, as I am, and I slow down. The area is wide and not busy. Numerous DO NOT ENTER signs are around different spinning gateways that look more like torture devices with how man bars are in the way

After I pay my fare—exact change—I make my way toward the different lines. One is north toward Finch and the other north toward Downsview. The girl from earlier heads toward Finch and I almost head the same direction until I read the sign.

I can only fuck up so many times in a day.

The ride on the subway is fairly pleasant. I sit near the back of a car, my one side against the wall of the car and near the accordion-folding floor. I put my backpack beside me and keep an eye on it, with my knees gripping my suitcase. I take out The Last Battle and start reading, with one ear free to hear the station names announced over the speaker. Waiting for Yorkdale.

While reading the first two chapters of the final instalment of The Chronicles Of Narnia, I think of abusive relationships. Shift and Puzzle definitely have an abusive relationship, filled with gaslighting and everything wrong in communication, skewed to make it seem like compassion.

It is even colder up here in Toronto than it was in Windsor, and I call my dad to let him know I’m on the Yorkdale platform. He instructs me to go where he’s going to pick me up. I stand in the underpass, unsure where I even am, in the wind and the cigarette smoke. I try to huddle between two weird boxes; one is digital and the other is locked. I watch the intersection for my dad’s van and he finally arrives.

Halfway into our hour-long drive to my hometown, we stop for food. The supposed “udon” noodles I have, with teriyaki sauce, vegetables, and beef, are like thick bits of dough, rather than the authentic Japanese udon noodles I’ve had before. But I’m grateful for the food. The beef is nice.

I’m finally home and the first thing I want to do is snuggle my rabbit. He’s been staying with my little brother since I returned to university at the beginning of January.

I barely recognise Pringles. He doesn’t seem real to me, like he’s a very well-done CGI rabbit. He reacts to my voice and hides in his blue hut. I take him out and snuggle him. I splutter and whine, and then splutter some more since he’s shedding—which I didn’t know. His fur gets all over my mouth, nose, and shirt, but he nuzzles into me.

I wonder if my love for him is like a parent’s love for their infant.

When my brother returns, I give him a hug. We watch some movies. I snuggle Pringles for many hours and accidentally fall asleep on the couch.

It’s nice to be back. The snow is falling and the air isn’t as dry as in Windsor. There are no people shouting as they walk by a sidewalk—mostly because there is no sidewalk and the population in this town is mainly retired folks instead of post-secondary students.

I do some low-key unpacking and am relieved I haven’t forgotten anything.

This Was A Day: February 13 - A play-by-play of February 13, the day I took a train from Windsor to Toronto to visit family on my mid-semester break.

Therapy Diary: Day 1

Blue and white paint splattered and dripping down a black wall.

Pre-Session

I slept like shit last night. My mind raced and my body found small nuisances, like a stuffed nose, dry air, and the weight of too many blankets. I think it was around 3:30am when I finally managed to pass out? And of course I woke up at 8:30 .

I blame nerves and anxiety.

My appointment is for 3:00pm and I can’t concentrate on the other tasks for today, since I’m worrying about how the first session will go. This will be the third time I’ve seen a therapist—the first was in 2010 and was… okay. My mother asked me about each session, wanting to know what I talked about. It was a fucking nightmare and made my progress worse. It was only a short term series of appointments, too. Once the term was up, I didn’t know what action to take afterward. I think I was okay for a while.

The second time was in 2013, almost two years ago from this third time around. I saw the therapist a couple of times, but then stopped. I don’t remember why.

I know the logistics of a therapy session. I know more or less what to expect.

I guess I’m scared of letting myself be vulnerable and opening up to someone who can help.

I don’t have much trouble being open. But I do still censor and monitor myself when I am open, particularly when I know how the recipient generally reacts to what I might say, especially when the person is only a listener.

Right now, I need more than a listener.

I could be much worse than I am, but I want to prevent the Rock Bottom Effect; I know I’m edging toward a cliff, and I’d rather get help now in walking away from the cliff, or building a safety wall at the edge of the cliff, or taking some other precaution so I don’t metaphorically jump off the cliff.

I know I’m going to cry. I’m a crier even when it isn’t in the context of speaking about my feelings, thoughts, and experiences.

I’m going to make a list of what I might say, only to avoid fumbling and rambling. Maybe write down what I hope to get out of therapy, and anything else that comes to mind, so I have a better starting point.

I hope I jive well with the therapist. She has a cool name.

Session

“We become thinkers.”

“As you watched everything happen, you learned how to strategise and how to survive.”

“You were just a little girl.”

I cry a lot and she draws my attention to how my body responds to my thoughts, how my voice changes, the positioning of my hands, my breathing. She talks about anatomy and autonomy; about curiosity and survival. I wish I had brought water. Crying and breathing and talking for 45 minutes turns my mouth into a bundle of gel, from mucous and saliva and air mingling together. I’ll remember for next time.

I revealed a lot about myself from the first few minutes and questions. She clarifies the pronunciation of my name. I ask if I can remove my boots, and then get into a comfortable seat on the couch.

She’s good at what she does: a Buddhist, non-judgemental, experienced in her field. I’m grateful for her position as a guide more than a listener. Instead of talking at her about my experiences, receiving a few questions, she directs me inward and explains and uses analogies.

I sense a glimmer of progress.

Post-Session

I still feel disconnected and dissociated, but that’s okay. When I return home, my eyes puffy and my face salt-stained from tears, I drink water and prepare a cup of herbal tea. After sitting at my desk and sipping half of the orange spice tea away, I grab a notebook and journal some thoughts and make some lists. Judgement. Rationalisation. Criticism. Curiosity. I am an expanding puzzle, missing parts of my frame. Who cares about the picture when there are pieces of emptiness riddling the scene?

I cry some more, because that’s what I do. I will see her next week and I’m hopeful, nervous, and excited for what will happen.Therapy Diary: Day 1--Blog post about my personal experience going into therapy for my mental health. Day 1 = The first session.

2016 Goals

As is custom at the start of January, I made goals for this year. They are similar to New Year’s Resolutions, but more specific and–dare I say it–loftier than a common resolution of “Be healthy” or “Be happy/happier.”

I believe in tangibility. I enjoy things that can exist in physical form, rather than things that exist solely in abstract, ethereal, and overwhelming headspaces. My goals for 2016 focus on the achievable; on things that can have progress; on small actions I can take to obtain a larger goal.

Baby steps.

If I work toward these goals and have successes along the way, I will find success elsewhere down the road. If I practice (writing, designing, self-love, healthy habits, etc.), then I will improve. Even if I don’t meet my end goal, I will at least better myself by trying.

2016 Goals:

  • Graduate from the University of Windsor.
  • Maintain a 75% average for my final two semesters.
  • Finish a novel manuscript for submission.
  • Have a poem published in a literary magazine.
  • Blog consistently within a routine.
  • Design a day planner.
  • Open an Etsy shop for digital art prints.
  • Tend to mental health (depression, anxiety, eating disorder, and whatever else pops up).
  • Here comes the cliché: Lose 25 pounds of fat.

Some of these goals are going to be more difficult (publish a poem), while other goals I’m 90% sure I will achieve (graduating university).

But it isn’t the end of the world if I don’t reach any of these goals.

What is one goal you’d like to accomplish in 2016?

2016 Goals--My 9 goals, or resolutions, for 2016, raging from health to writing to business!

An Introduction

Here are some facts about me. Some will be more insightful than others, but all reveal something about me:

  • I’d be okay with consuming all my meals if they’ve been put into a blender. Saves me from flossing, right?
  • I enjoy dental hygiene, which includes flossing, so that’s why I’d only be “okay” surviving on smoothie’d food.
  • I’ll surprise you with my fashion knowledge. My mother has seamstress skills and in my youth I watched an exhausting amount of fashion TV shows.
  • My mother was emotionally abusive. ¯\_(ツ)_/¯ I just want her to be happy and let me live the rest of my life.
  • I cry easily at beautiful things, like animation, music, acting, writing, and nature. God, nature…
  • I don’t ascribe to a religion or believe in a formed version of “God,” but will respect religious beliefs as long as they aren’t preached to me or used as a method for people to be bigots.
  • I’m a writer. Poetry comes most easily to me, I study contemporary and classic literature at the University of Windsor (also: Spanish language and general linguistics because #nerd), but my heart lies with high fantasy novels.
  • I can’t eat more than, like, a cup of shellfish without getting disgusting digestive problems, which is a tragedy because I love shrimp and scallops and lobster and crab.
  • Self-diagnosed eating disorder and mild anxiety. Doctor-diagnosed and untreated depression (because I’m arrogant as fuck and have been dismantling my resistance to assistance).
  • Sometimes I’m really mean, but sometimes people are really rude. They balance each other out.

It’s nice to meet you. I’ll be blogging twice a week, covering topics about my life, maybe throwing in some recipes, some tips about university life, and a whole slew of writer’s whining and winning to make things interesting.