The Beauty that Surrounds Me

In the next few days, I’ll be trying to start something I should have started a long, long time ago, but never did. I’m going to write about the stories that surround me (Films, Tv Shows, Games, Music, Books etc), in a form that, ideally, should be a mix of reviewing, discussion, criticism and personal experience. I want to talk about the beauty that surrounds me, what keeps me company, what makes me think, what makes me laugh, what makes me cry. I want to spend more time looking at those things, I want to tell others about them, and I want to learn more about them myself.

It will be extremely hard for me to keep it up, despite precisely because I feel so passionate about writing and the things I want to write about, but I’ve regretted not doing anything so far, and my life is already full of regrets and missed opportunities, and it shouldn’t be this way.

I will have to learn a lot of things, I will have to try to find a good style, most of all I will have to do my best to simply keep writing and not give up like I’m always tempted to do. I’m scared, for no good reason at all, and sometimes that fear tries to make me forget what I want to do, what I’m passionate about and what I want myself and my life to look like. It wants to make me numb, and I don’t want to be numb.

I’ll try my best to keep my word.


Failed Attempt at a Post

It’s weird to write this so many months after that last post, but I haven’t forgotten. Not completely, at least.

I say this despite feeling awful, and exhausted, and empty right about now, and I’ve been wanting to cry for the best part of today. Both literally and metaphorically, not-being-able-to-let-myself-go will haunt me for a very long time. I hate this coldness, this rigidity in my words, in my syntax, but I don’t know how to break it, how to make myself more “aggressively vulnerable”.

But these thoughts are for another day.

Since the last time I posted, I moved to a different house, I applied for two (very different) journalistic positions, I have been accepted for one and I haven’t heard back from the other yet, despite the latter being my favourite one by far. At first, I didn’t even want to apply for the one I liked the most, I just didn’t feel like I could be good enough for it in a million years. In the meantime, I started writing as a freelancer for the one that did get me, and one of my first article got huge, with more than 85.000 views.

My phobia got so, so much better now. I’m having some weird side effects that make it hard to sleep sometimes, but I can’t even compare how I deal with insects now and how I dealt with them 3 months ago, let alone last year. The anxiety comes back to a certain extent, when I’m under a lot of stress, but it looks like I can deal with it.

In a week I will have to decide whether I go back to university or not, and I still don’t know. I want to go like I want few other things, but at the same time I don’t think I’m ready, at all, and I’m afraid going would only mean having the phobia come back, and another emergency return trip before the end of the school year.

This was not what I wanted to write about. And this was not how I wanted to write about it. Dammit.

On the theme of self-expression, I’ve identified with my psychologist that there are several things I tend to hide to others, and to an extent even to myself, things that I find it hard to say or show or communicate, or even simply think and put into words in my own head. Things that I tend to forget regularly, not as an act of carelessness or distraction, but aggressively, almost, I’d say, intentionally, if it wasn’t that I’m not doing it willingly, it’s all automatic, and unconscious.

My task for the next session is to make a list of these things that I hide from others, and from myself, out of fear, out of shame, out of self-hate. The list includes a variety of things, going from my gender and sexuality, my intimacy, my love for other people, my desires and aspirations all the way to things like plushies and clothes and other aesthetic preferences.

And right now I’m incredibly frustrated, because there’s this weight on my chest that I wanted to address and express by writing this post, and instead I ended up writing a report because I don’t know how to put it into words, and where to start.

This is the very process that doesn’t let me write fiction. It’s happening, right now. I have these things that I want to say, things that I hold dear and feel strongly about but I can’t unlock them, I cannot get to them anymore, I’m too clumsy and detached and apathetic and stressed and tense and scared and lonely and I don’t love and respect myself enough to let myself feel them and live them.

What I do know is that I’m sad right now. And disappointed. And frustrated, like a missed opportunity. My language is like this because my heart isn’t here. My heart won’t come out.

I won’t stop trying, but I’m not hopeful right now…

Chastised Kid Syndrome

Thanks to one kind commenter, who did honestly try his best to help me, I’ve been making a couple of experiments on myself, to see if I could change a few things about my attitude and my mentality. It didn’t go well, through no one’s fault really, and I did have to spend a few weeks effectively recovering, picking myself up and getting back to where I was before, for, even if it wasn’t the best place, it’s certainly a better baseline than the misery and hopelessness my experiment left me with.

Still, it wasn’t a purely negative experience. I learned a lot from it, as well as from the stimulating conversation I had with him. And perhaps the most important thing I learned concerns why I behave the way I do. I like to call it “Chastised Kid Syndrome”.

An example of what it is: Dark Souls 2 came out a few weeks ago, I’ve been waiting for it for a long time, and it’s one of the very few games I’m willing to buy on launch at full price. Not only I enjoy it in its mechanics, but I strongly relate to it on a thematic, emotional level. When it came out, I asked my father if I could buy it, and he said that I absolutely could. 10 minutes later, I asked him again. And 30 minutes after that, I asked him again, again.

Eventually I did buy it, but the whole time, even though I got permission, I didn’t feel like I actually had permission. The way I behave, the way I feel, is like a child who has been punished by an authoritative figure, and was never forgiven, never pardoned, nor I ever earned my way back into “normality”, into a state of psychological independence and control. In a way, into adulthood.

And so it is that, if I’m not worthy, if I’m not important, then everything that stems from myself equally doesn’t matter. My desires, hopes, fears, preoccupations, my thoughts and my emotions, my creativity and my uniqueness don’t deserve to be taken into consideration, nor they can function as meaningful motivations to act. I don’t deserve to be cared for and loved, I don’t deserve enjoyment, I don’t deserve to play, I should only fulfil my obligations, be a good child, behave and maybe one day I will have done enough to be set free, to be the “master of my fate, and the captain of my soul”.

This explains so much. It explains why I work so well in a school environment (the authority imposes on me), why, during the last few years, I was only able to write when someone was very close to me (almost as if I was doing it for them, instead of myself), perhaps it explains why I can’t really progress with my transition (after all, like writing, I can only do it for myself). Obviously it affects my confidence, my sense of self-worth, the way I use my money and my time, and the fact that external praise never gets to me.

I believe it’s also one of the factors why I’m so disconnected on an emotional level. I’ve been reading Cara Ellison’s blog, her writing is always very powerful, very touching, and it reminds me of how I tried to write, but these days it’s as if I couldn’t quite remember what it feels like anymore. Not on my own, at least. My writing, like myself, tends to be clinical, cold, detached, instead of intimate, warm, I want to say, feminine. I’ve been quite upset since I noticed how I can’t seem to write more like I used to, more emotionally involved. It’s as if my brain was here, but my soul was a bit too scared to come out.

If it did, I’d finally be able to cry.

Lost Mind, Lost Soul: A Diary of a Sickness (Pt. 2)

I haven’t kept my word with this diary. I haven’t been very constant. At all. Almost 3 weeks after I said I would keep a diary, I’m here writing the second page. But, the diary is not the only thing I should have done and haven’t. There’s a lot of confusion in my days and in my mind, a lot of dis-order. I can’t even express myself in words, I can’t vent with someone, I can’t confess my thoughts: it’s all too tangled up, blurred, hard to name, difficult to organize. I often disappoint my own resolutions, even in small, simple things, and I’ve mostly been escaping from all the depression, as well as escaping the awareness that I’m escaping. I’m that good.

The depression is one half of my days, the other one being anxiety. And of course there’s the emptiness from escaping both.

I started off with a lot of constant anxiety, but that numbed down little by little, day by day, for lack of external stimuli. I have anxiety attacks, when something triggers them, but otherwise my days are fine, and I haven’t felt so bad as to need psych drugs again. Luckily.

As anxiety subdued, the latent depression came up, bigger than ever. No motivation to do anything, just sadness, videogames, all that escapism I hate, and the guilt for allowing myself that with the reason (excuse?) that it wouldn’t be a good moment to pressure myself. But my depression runs a lot deeper than that, I can tell. Or, to be exact, I can feel it, but I can’t tell it. There’s a few things I could list (guilt, sense of losing my place, my future, sense of failure for giving up etc) but somehow it feels like I’m always slightly missing the mark, as if I couldn’t find the right name for the elephant in the room, only some of its body parts.

My personal progresses, so to speak, have been halted too, and indefinitely so. I can’t progress down the transgender road with very little time and space for myself, and even less so if I can’t ask for almost any money from my father because the psychologist is already a big weight on our finances. That’s surely affecting me as well, my thoughts keep going back to that, even more often than usual.

Not all days have been so totally flat-lining. At random times I felt some sort of motivation, some desire to work to get better, some will to do something. But, every night I have nightmares, and every day has a bad start, leaving me feeling like I already have something to make up for the moment I wake up. Sometimes I remember the dreams and sometimes I don’t; I‘m afraid my idea of the mechanism of repression and forgetfulness concerning dreams is too simple, but it does seem to make sense of why the days I remember my nightmares seem to be a bit better than the others. Still, even if I go to bed with some kind of energy, it’s always gone in the morning, and I have to start again. I have to start again with nothing in my hands, not even that small will to start again, and fight again.

One of my objectives for the next few days is to make order in my days, find a new routine, so that hopefully my mind will get clearer too. Obviously, writing more of this should help too.


Dear —-,

I know all too well you never liked goodbyes. Of course, I don’t like them either. But at some point, they become necessary, and slowly delaying them indefinitely will only keep hurting both of us. We have had time, a lot more time than we needed, a lot more than we should have had. By now you too know that we cannot keep going like this. We cannot be together anymore. If there was some way, we would have found it by now. But neither of us can find a good life with the other: we cannot stay together while we keep pulling in different directions. There can be no balance: for years we have tried, and all that came of it is that we are still in that same place where we started. I know it’s comfortable, there’s no one that makes me feel safe and protected quite like you do.

But we, we both, have to learn to let go. We owe it to ourselves, or rather I to me and you to you. We are sacrificing our own lives for this “us” that has known only unrest, indecision, longing and failure. This is not working. I know it. You know it. We only have to turn to each other and hug each other and say goodbye.

You already know all this is true. I know you know it, because I know it too. But it’s important that you hear it from me, and it’s important that you stop ignoring it. I need you to acknowledge that this is the way it has to be. I cannot let go of you, if you keep holding on to me. You have to help me, and you have to help yourself. I’m doing the same, but I cannot do it alone. This one last thing needs both of us. Stop finding excuses. Stop delaying, stop saying “just this one last time”. This is the last time, right now, and there will not be another one. And if you don’t let go, I will have to do things, and they will hurt both me and you. They will hurt a lot; a lot more, and a lot more deeply than this already does.

Cry, if you wish. I am crying too. That’s the proper reaction, so I will not stop you. You know how much I care for you. But it’s time we start using these verbs in the past. It’s time that we split this “we” into a me and a you, two different individuals who cared a lot about each other, but realized their ways lead in different directions. I will keep your photographs and diaries, and years from now I will read them and cherish the memories. You will not be forgotten. And who knows, maybe one day we’ll meet again, and we’ll be happy and awkward around each other like people who were very close and then grew apart.

With all that you’ve gone through, I know you will be alright, eventually, even without me. And I, I will be fine too, some day.

Thank you for all the times we have spent together.


Sayonara nanda…

I’m Scared of Writing

I’m terrified.
Every time I think I could write, my mind tries to find excuses. “I’m tired, I should do this first, why don’t I play the guitar instead?” And I’m scared of writing because it’s the thing I want to do the most. I’m not scared of playing videogames, I don’t really care if I’m good or bad at it.

But I do care about how good a writer I am. And my fear of writing serves the purpose of not making me try to become a better writer. I know that to be an at least decent writer, it takes a lot of hard work. And I’m not scared of the hard work in itself, I have proved it every year, at school and university, for the last 5 years at least. I’m scared that I may fail. That even with all the hard work I may find there’s no way for me to become the kind of person I want to be.

But this is stupid. For fear of finding myself empty, after all, I let myself be empty without even trying. I’m not. I’m not empty. That was my past, not me. If I was, I wouldn’t be here by now. I wouldn’t be thinking about how terrible it would be if I was empty. Because empty people just can’t feel it. Like most fears, this is totally irrational. But fear has quite an effect on me. It acts on the inside, before me. I can’t simply keep it away, I have to find it and fight it. And it’s tiring, and stressing.

I’ve had a block for almost an entire year. I haven’t written a single word for months and months and months, for the only reason that I was scared that I had nothing to write about, that I wasn’t good enough. And I stressed over it, which made it harder to write, and so on. It was a vicious circle, and I was only able to break it because a very special person kept believing in me and reminding me that I had more in me.

The way things are now, writing is still very stressful and tiring for me. It’s like studying a subject I don’t really like, in order to get to the part I actually like. Writing could be enjoyable (at least a part of it), and it could be liberating, and I know I have this desperate need to express myself, or I just end up being locked inside myself. But right now, all I see is the effort and the fear that I have to overcome. It’s a lot better than when I couldn’t write at all, but I still have to “make myself write”. And I know I want to. And I need to, to a certain extent. Feeling the need to write is still rare, but I do feel bad when I don’t. I’d just… want to want it. But, how do you defeat your fear? All I’m doing right now is facing it. Holding on to my motivation and keeping facing it in the hope that it will slowly disappear, every time I prove it is a fear that has no reason to exist.