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In the last three weeks I've managed to submit two new stories. One of them is a Micropasta that's about 300 words long and the other is a short story that I think is just over 2,500 words. Both of them are slightly shorter than what I had expected from myself (for both of their respective categories) but to me, this is a pretty big achievement, considering that just a few months ago I was in a terrible state of mind. I had managed to convince myself that I was never going to do anything worthwhile with my life ever again, even if it was just writing a short story.
These little victories are very important to me and I'll get to that later on. I now start to feel the ideas flow in my head, and a creative spark seems to have been re-ignited after it was cruelly extinguished. Things that I had know deep-down I like doing are starting to become things I just like doing. Nothing I do feels forced anymore. I'm no longer doing things as means of reassuring myself that my life hasn't shattered into pieces. I'm doing them because I want and need to do them.
I can once again feel the enjoyment of creating characters and situations, and the thought of forming ideas to create characters and situations. I feel like I'm in touch with myself again. I'm starting to fear the future less than I had before, and I'm no longer a stern critic of myself and everything I do.
I'm beginning to have more good days than bad. Bad days come and they're cruel when they do, but even then knowing I'm progressing through this gradually, is enough to get me through it periodically. Knowing I'm gaining strength from my bad experiences makes every day just that little bit easier.
I'm not where I ever wanted to be, not even close. I don't think I'm even where I currently want to be. I know that I'm probably never going to be that same optimistic, overly-positive, charismatic person I was before my world became a sad, frightening, and lonely place last summer/autumn. But I'm working on it, and I'm getting better through the wonderful support of my friends and family, and recently, through finally learning to help myself.
If any of you ever want to talk to me about issues regarding your mental health, leave a message on my talk page to meet me in the SpinPasta Wiki chat, and I will try to get back to you when we're both online. Trust me when I say that I will know what I'm talking about. I've been in some pretty dark places over the last year, feelings so low I could never fathom their existence. When you're young and naive, these feelings are overwhelming and scary, but you don't need to go it alone.
In the mean time, if you are experiencing, I can only tell you this:
- There is help out there. It may not feel like there is now, but there is. There is a lot of it, but it's not going to come searching for you so you need to reach out yourself.
- I can sit here and tell you that there's no stigma around mental health, but at the end of the day, I would be lying. As unfortunate as that fact is, I'm confident that the world is slowly realising that there shouldn't be. Coming forward and being open about it is one way to help erase that stigma, one person at a time.
- Open up about your problems to loved ones. They are your family, and they will help. If you think/know that they won't be, then do so with your friends or somebody that you trust. My friends were unbelievably supportive when I opened up about my issues earlier this year.