Well, hello there.
It’s been a good while. Two months to be exact since we last talked. A lot has happened. A lot of bad. A lot of dark times. A lot of weird moments where my head just wasn’t where I wanted to be. But in the last week, a ton of good stuff has happend! The whole purpose of this blog was to be honest, to show that not every blogger is dowsed in rose gold and maxi dresses. (While that’s super cute, that’s just not me.) While I’m happy to be back, there are no promises that I will be blogging regularly, like I used to. I now work full-time, I’m still a full-time student at SCAD, and balancing my mental health with my social life. But for now, let’s have a chat about where I’ve been.
anxiety + mental health
This semester–or junior year in just general–has been a whirlwind for my mental health. As you guys know, I struggled a lot in Hong Kong with my mental health. Then during winter break, I was diagnosed officially with Neurotic Excoriations and Generalized Anxiety Disorder. (I was published by Vocal Media, and was fortunate to share my story.) After that, I went off the grid. I promised myself that I was worthy of seeking more treatment with my mental health. I enrolled in the counseling services at school, I began a daily poetry journal, and I expressed myself openly with my friends about my panic attacks, suicidal thoughts, and depression spells. Everything was fine, until it wasn’t. It was around week four of the semester when everything started to spiral out of control. Without going into too much detail, I gave someone my heart, only to have it crushed. In the process, I lost an entire friend group, as well as myself.
This sent my anxiety into a full on tizzy. For about three weeks, I couldn’t focus on much other than my mental health. I stopped talking my medication because I thought that I was relying on it too much. I kept writing though, and that became my new therapy. I reached out to my grandma, and began filtering to her about all that was going on. I’m glad I did, because then my life turned around fully.
I don’t think college will ever be easy. But, it’s all a learning process. I’m currently in two photography classes, where I’m working on semester-long projects. (Below are some examples from my Seminar II class, where I’m continuing my project about my mental health. The project is titled Generalized Anxiety Distortions. For this project, I shoot through found objects in order to distort the subject of the photo, replicating feelings of anxiety and depression.) I’m also in an English class about Beat writers/poetry. There are days where it seems as if I cannot look at another photograph or turn another page of an Allen Ginsberg writing, but I push through. Currently, my grades are where I want them to be. But because of my mental health recently, participation–which is a huge part in these seminar classes–has affected my grades, making me a little apprehensive about my final grades since we are so close to the end of the semester. Nonetheless, I am comfortable, and I feel as if I’ve worked to my best ability this quarter, while learning about technique, time-management, and concept exploration.
I am the type of person that hates stagnation. Stagnation in my social life is really irritating, if I’m being honest. I hate not seeing my friends grow around me. I hate going to the same places over and over and over again. Hanging in the same spots. Talking about the same subjects. Spending nights downtown knowing that I had a million things to do, and end up shivering in the cold, was no longer how I wanted to spend my weekends. So once I cut the group of girls out of my life, I realized how easier it was to breathe without them. Now, that I am living for me, things are starting to fall into place. Now, I’ve found individuals who bring me happiness. I no longer care about the amount of people I know, but the quality of them. I’ve also learned to enjoy alone time.
Sidenote: I met a boy… 😉
I’ve been starting taking iPhone snapshots recently, becoming obsessed with an app called Huji. It makes your photos look as if they were taken in the nineties. With these Huji pictures, I can take in the little moments. I’ve been taking night walks recently with Huji and snapping away at the reflections the rain leaves, and it’s so satisfying. With these reflection pictures, I’m able to reflect on my own life–where I stand in the world: am I a stagnant puddle or am I a flowing current? Taking pictures of the sky help ground myself. When I take these pictures, I repeat the same phrase: “my life is beautiful,” and it’s been helping me a ton with my anxiety.
I am now officially employed and I’ve somehow managed to secure my own apartment. I can’t share with you how proud of myself I am that I have achieved full independence. When I was talking with my counselor, she asked me, “what is it that you want the most out of this life.” And I answered, “I want to make my younger self proud.” There were days, when I was a kid, that were so dark that I would zone out and daydream. Daydream of the day when the chains of my anxiety, depression, and insecurity would break. I’d get out of my stupid small town. Away from horrible family members. Liberate myself. Though I’m not fully there, my younger self is beginning to smile. I’m on the path to self-actualization. It’s a slow journey, but I’m getting there.
Apologies for being away for so long, but as you can see, a lot has happened in my life since I last logged on. (Including a company reaching out to me TODAY, for a collaboration.) I hope this update wasn’t too vague, and you got a solid idea of where I’ve been. If you have any questions, shoot me an email or a DM.
thanks for reading,