World Suicide Prevention Day

It’s Suicide Prevention Awareness Month and today in particular is World Suicide Prevention Day.

If you or someone you love is facing a mental health crisis, you can now reach the Suicide and Crisis Lifeline in the US by dialing or texting 988.

Mental Health is a subject near and dear to my heart. Long before I suffered my first psychotic break with reality, I was diagnosed with Major Depressive Disorder. I’d been in emotional turmoil for almost a year before my official diagnosis.

I understand the suicidal mindset all too well. I have made two attempts to take my life.

Recently, I was reading about Vincent Van Gough and a theory that he didn’t die by suicide caught my attention. One of the pieces of evidence against his suicide was his hopeful demeanor in letters prior to his death. I’ve heard similar things said of other public figures who died by suicide. They couldn’t have killed themselves, because they appeared happy or they were making plans for the future.

Mental Health Can Be a Tug-of-War

I’ve been in periods of darkness that seemed without end. But I’ve also been in spaces where I’ve felt Hope and Hopelessness battling inside of me. Depression can sometimes feel like a Tug-of-War. If your loved one is battling severe depression and suicidal ideation, it’s important for you to understand that while periods of hope are a good sign, they are not the end of the battle.

I have to admit, I don’t really know when the battle ends. Maybe never.

There was a point in time where I felt like it was inevitable that one day I would lose. But right now? That inevitability doesn’t feel so certain anymore. I’ll take that as a good sign.

Right Now, as Long as I’m Fighting, I’m Winning

I know from experience that when you’re suicidal, you don’t necessarily need an inspiring speech. Sometimes you just need someone to sit with you and hold you while you cry for an hour. Sometimes you just need one reason to keep going for the next hour. Something as simple as petting your furry friend or calling a family member can stave off the darkness for a little while.

I consider each new day a victory. I look at the little candle on my bulletin board and I choose Hope for today.

I’m not a doctor or a counselor, but I am someone who feels like I’m surviving the darkness. If you or someone you love is contemplating suicide, know that there are people who care and who want to help you. Sometimes, that’s all you need. ❤️

Read my serial sci-fi story The Control only on Mythrill!

Like my content? You can support me through Buy Me a Coffee with single donations and monthly memberships.

Until next time, my glorious herd! Imagine, dream, and believe.

🦄 ❤️AllytheUnicorn❤️ 🦄

Imagine Destiny Video on YouTube

Behold! My masquerade ball video is now on YouTube. Magical memories.

My Imagine Destiny Masquerade Ball YouTube Video.

Read my serial sci-fi story The Control only on Mythrill!

Like my content? You can support me through Buy Me a Coffee with single donations and monthly memberships.

Until next time, my glorious herd! Imagine, dream, and believe.

🦄 ❤️AllytheUnicorn❤️ 🦄

In Defense of Hope: The Little Candle on my Bulletin Board

In 2012 during outpatient care for my first major depressive episode, I drew a little design to put on my bulletin board:

A candle with my new mantra on it.

A close up of a burning candle wick with the words: “You DO have a FUTURE and it is WORTH FIGHTING FOR.”

During those months in outpatient care, I imagined hope as a tiny little flame against a sea of infinite darkness. It felt too small, too weak, and too fragile to survive. But still it burned. Still, I repeated my new mantra to myself and carried forward.

There have been points I have wanted to rip that little candle down. There have been days I have looked at my candle and with tears in my eyes have said to myself, “No, THIS was not worth fighting for. THIS has not been worth the pain and the hardship that I have endured. THIS is not enough.”

Then there are moments where I feel that flicker of joy and realize that THIS, my life, my dreams, the future after my first attempt to take my life, has been worth embracing.

It has not been easy. But I think I knew that when I first wrote my new mantra. FIGHTING is not easy. Having HOPE is HARD.

But I count every blessing and celebrate every victory.

The Creative Power of Dreams

Plight of the writer.

At 2AM this morning, I awoke.

Throwing back the covers, I checked the time.

Oh wow. Still early. I thought. Laying back down, I stared across the room at the mirror on my jewelry armoire. No, can’t go back to sleep yet. I have to write this down.

So I got up, and I wrote down my dream.

Close to eight hours later, up and starting my day, I texted with my sister. I described how inspired I felt.

“Some of my best story ideas come from dreams. lol” She replied.

Yeah. Incredible, isn’t it?

At night, we dream. Science has yet to fully explain why. In our minds, the barriers between fantasy and reality rip away and we wander through landscapes of intense color and worlds of what-if scenarios. Some dreams are bizarre. Some dreams are mundane.

And then… some dreams strike a chord that feels like the root of a creative burst.

I’ve previously shared with some friends and family that my manuscript darling, HANG ON (#amquerying), came to me during my April 2018 psychotic break with reality. The images that bombarded my conscious during that week were extremely dream-like.

This dream felt reminiscent of that psychotic break, as some of my dreams these days often do. I sat down to write on my current works in progress, but my mind kept wandering.

I hit “New Document” on Microsoft Word and faced the blank page.

PSYCHOSURGE” I type.

And thus a new journey begins.

World Schizophrenia and Psychosis Awareness Day

It’s Mental Health Awareness Month, and today in particular is World Schizophrenia and Psychosis Awareness Day.

Psychosis is a terrifying word, isn’t it?

I have schizoaffective disorder, which basically means I have a mood disorder (in my case, major depression) and I have also separately suffered psychotic symptoms. I was diagnosed with major depression first, after a slow descent into darkness over the course of 2011 that cumulated in a suicide attempt in on New Year’s Day of 2012. Summer of 2016, I suffered my first major psychotic break with reality. As of today, I have had four significant psychotic breaks with reality, each spanning the course of about 3-5 days.

In what I consider my worst break in April of 2018, I left my apartment half-naked, got in my car, and drove until I ran out of gas on the access road. Police were called to the scene, and I was dragged kicking and screaming into an ambulance. As terrifying as that was, it was the best possible outcome that I could have hoped for. There are people out there with my illness who have wound up in similar situations and have not been nearly as fortunate. They are the heart of why I’m writing this.

I’ve been blessed with supportive family and friends. I am lucky in that my medication has, for the most part, worked very well for me. I’ve been consistently employed full-time for almost four years. I’m making it. I’m doing okay.

But for the people who suffer from psychosis who are not okay, support is needed. Donations to the National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI) are being matched during Mental Health Awareness Month. If you have the means, I urge you to support them. NAMI has provided education, resources, and help to me and others living with mental illness.

THE CONTROL is Now on Mythrill

THE CONTROL a YA Sci-Fi Post-Apocalyptic Dystopia, is now on Mythrill.

Every scientific experiment needs a control, and for the genetically engineered superhumans at Hayes Industries, that means every one of them has ordinary human counterparts who must endure the same horrific experiments as they do.

Sixteen-year-old Beth is one of the controls, designed to be the ordinary biological counterpart of the super-human, Beta, the second-most powerful superhuman at Hayes Industries. But in one escape attempt gone awry, Beta dies. As Hayes Industries has no further use for a control without a super-human counterpart, Beth must escape an attempt to terminate her life.

Announcing: The Return of the Revenge of the Bride of the Madness! (Camp NaNo 2022 April Session)

Guess what I’ve signed up for. Again. Even though I flunked November AGAIN this past 2021.

Soon the April session of Camp NaNoWriMo (National Novel Writing Month) will be upon us, and I will be attempting the madness again. The last TEN challenges I have signed on for, I have crashed and burned.

I’m a little nervous announcing that I’m doing a NaNoWriMo Camp session since my last few stints of public NaNoWriMo have gone so poorly. My darkness monster has consistently reared its ugly head. Even put me in the hospital in 2020 (Failure with 20,000 words! Woot!). But I’m feeling really hopeful on attempt 11, even though… hahaha…silly me, I set my goal to 95,000 freakin’ words. Cue the psycho music!

But… here’s the thing. The project I’m working on and want to finish… I kind of sold it.

For my Instagram followers… I have teased #secretprojectcoming2022. I even announced where #secreteprojectcoming2022 would be, Mythrill Fiction! I’m so immensely grateful for the opportunity to share my writing on a wide-scale basis, and I’m EXCITED man! One problem… the manuscript I pitched… I never finished!

Time to fix that.

See y’all in April at the starting line!

I Know Where the Unicorn Flies

Author’s Note: Do not adjust your monitor. You have read the date correctly. This unicorn obsession of mine goes WAY BACK, love. This is five-year-old-mini-and-wee-Ally dictating unicorn poetry to her mother. It’s short. It’s sweet. It’s actually pretty good poetry considering the author was five. In addition to being evidence of the longevity of my unicorn obsession, it’s also my oldest piece of writing. In honor of 100 posts on Instagram, I give you a child’s unicorn poetry.

I know where the unicorn flies

I know where she dances, glides

I know where her foot steps lightly

I know where the unicorn flies

NANOWRIMO DAY 21

Guess what? It’s NaNoWriMo day 21. And I am okay.

Oh, I’m definitely behind. Probably not gonna finish. But that’s okay. I have written 15,480 words total that I am mostly proud of and I had a good long 5,000-word sprint just today!

My last Instagram post, and my last post on here, were pretty dark. I reached a dark place. On Instagram I wrote, “Part of me wants other people to know how I feel so that they can tell me that they care… but the darkness monster says even if people do care… so what? It’s not enough. It’s never enough. It can’t last and it can’t make anything different.”

Here’s the thing though… people showed up to care. And I found that once again, it DOES matter. When you have people that love you cheering you on, it doesn’t matter how many words you get or don’t get. And I realized that even if I didn’t live up to the expectations I set for myself right this minute, my life is still worth living. The darkness monster can go away. Maybe he’ll be back, but it’s okay. He’s just a liar I don’t need to listen to anyway.

So here’s to however many words I get to finish in the next nine days! Happy writing!

NaNoWriMo Day 7

So we’re a full week into NaNoWriMo, and I’ve written a grand total of 700 words since the start of the month. My account profile says my project is at 7,805 words, but that’s deceptive. I started with something like 7,100 words, but I wanted to reach 60,000 this month. I told myself that I would do better than I did last year. I told myself (and the rest of my sparse friends list) that I would update my blog and Instagram twice a week to keep myself on track. And I’m one week into the challenge and I feel like a failure.

Sequel (the platform I’ve been publishing my Make Me Maid of Honor series) announced they were shutting down this week. And that, among many other things, has got me down. I kind of expected it, but I still feel like a failure.

Can I be brutally honest for just a minute? Sometimes, like right now, I just don’t see the point. I’ve struggled with chronic depression for ten years, and I have to admit despite everything that’s supposedly “good” that has happened to me in those ten years there are days like today where I just feel like there’s no point in trying to be happy. Because eventually, I wind up right back here again. Hello old nemesis, the darkness monster. It seems like no matter what, you’re always following. No matter what temporary joy I can lay ahold of, you’re always there telling me it can’t last and it’s not enough.

I’m burned out. I’m heartbroken. I’m depressed again. And I don’t have a redeeming corner to turn here in this post. I’m still staring down a blinking cursor and I don’t have any idea on how to make it move. I still feel like a failure at everything I’ve ever attempted. And I don’t need an inspiring speech. I don’t need a phone call or a hug. I just need to write the next word.

Somehow.