I wrote about my slide into depression recently. I'm revisiting the subject because talking about it helps.
Sharing what I'm doing to fight on might help someone else, even if it makes me uncomfortable in some ways. I feel like I'm whining. I feel like I'm an abnormal, worthless part of society for having the emotions I do. I don't feel like I belong.
But I'm not alone, and that's why I'm going to express myself as I can, and speak about what I'm doing to get my life back in order.
As I mentioned before, writing about it helped. Old and new friends alike let me know they understand, and that's a big thing, even when the nasty little voice in my head doesn't agree and doesn't want anyone's pity.
I'm remembering how to tell that nasty little voice to go to hell. I'd gotten lazy because I'd been so focused on my novel writing and production and client editorial that I didn't have time to get really, really depressed.
I think the first real forward step wasn't in the writing, however, it was in making a decision to do something–anything. Instead of wallowing, I stood back up.
That was hard. Really hard. I think one of the most difficult parts about fighting depression, for me, is making the decision I must dig out somehow, even when it seems impossible.
And for the past little while, it's felt impossible. My mother has assured me, countless times, I'm doing all of the right things to make the problems go away. (And not through magic, by hard work, effort, and all that snazz.)
Although I swore to myself I wouldn't let my pride sink so low again, I started an indiegogo campaign to help myself get back on my feet in a way I could, eventually, be proud of: my novel-writing career. (If you have a few spare dollars, consider buying me a cup of tea to help me pay for all of the things I need to pay for to make these novels a reality. My career is really important to me. That's why I work so hard, but… I had to choose between it and my home recently.)
I pillaged a lot of my novel funds to pay for various household disaster things. In order to be a self-sufficient business, I developmentally edit novels for clients.
I was financially stable for my writing until this disaster struck, barely. But when given the choice of repairing from a sewage flood or keeping my novel-writing nest, it was a pretty simple choice. Without a home, I can't write… and if the sewage flood wasn't fixed, my home could've been condemned. Insurance is covering a lot, but not everything. That's just how it rolls, unfortunately.
My mother is really, really helping me a lot financially right now, which is a major blow to my pride, however appreciative I am. (Thanks, Mom.)
Thanks to my mother, I can go to Las Vegas without worrying about having to eat as cheaply as possible. We can pick and choose from the reasonably-priced buffets. We can get some souvenirs. We can go see some shows. I have to buy her a jackalope and mail it to her… but we were going to do that anyway. That's how we roll in the Blain household.
We help each other, even if it means bullying our way through the walls of pride.
I can do all of these things, as we had planned in December of 2013, because my mother is helping us do it so we won't fall into even more debt.
I'm grateful, even if my pride is curled in the fetal position.
Through it all, I have to try to force a positive thought. I can do this. No, the potato salad kickstarter is not a reflection of my value. Just because people want to throw money at some kid for being snarky on the internet doesn't mean my goals and ambitions are worthless.
True story: When I saw that kickstarter project, I just about gave up on everything. I wanted to cry.
But I fought it, one thought at a time. Fine, if some dude can get $35,000+ dollars because he wanted potato salad, maybe I can get the money I need to finish my novels and keep writing.
Maybe my campaign will take off, and I'll be able to get a new laptop… one that can handle running word plus another program for drafting and editing purposes. One with a nice, big screen so I can take it places and have the screen real estate to be productive. Or replace my piece of crap desktop, although it is functional as is. It's just crappy and old.
And… dream of all dreams… a dedicated keyboard and mouse for it.
If the stars align, a dedicated monitor for downstairs when I'm working in a quiet space where I can concentrate without life getting in the way.
Maybe I can prove to myself, and the world, that writing is a worthwhile endeavor, and that through my books, I can connect with people and entertain them. I can, in some way, touch them even though we've never met face to face and may never have that chance.
Maybe I can, one thought at a time, prove I'm worthwhile.
But the other, dark little voice, keeps saying I've attached my value to money. That I'm a greedy little bitch for daring to want to succeed at anything.
But then I fight back, thought by thought: Yes, I'm being greedy. I have a dream, and damn it, I'm not going to let some stupid little negativity demon lurking in my brain take it away from me, not this time. I want to write my books, and I want to make my novel-writing career a viable lifestyle and reality.
And the ‘this time' mentioned above is accurate. It won, a while back. For two to three years, where I barely wrote a single word. It won, because I didn't fight on.
Because I didn't, couldn't, wouldn't believe in myself.
That's depression, though. That's the nature of the beast.
All I can do is fight on, and hope that this time, it is enough.
I won't listen to those who say writing is a crap shoot career choice. I don't care. It's what I love to do. It's a part of who I am. Why should I roll over and take a traditional job because of what traditional people say?
I want to tell stories. I want people to love my books.
I want to write.
And I will.
And I'll keep telling myself this, one thought at a time, until I believe it.