Honesty From the Rooftops

The ones who scream from the rooftops about how honest they are should be watched at all times.

Listened to but never trusted.

Lies come easy to them. Even about the simple act of honesty.

If every other social media post is “people don’t like me because I’m honest” then there’s something wrong there.

Here’s a dose of honesty: people don’t like you because you’re an asshole and you’re an asshole because you lie through your teeth and treat people like shit.

It’s interesting because people have complained to me in the past that I shouldn’t write about them. That I shouldn’t write about them in a negative light.

But that’s the only light you show me, and that light is dim.

Like a flickering light in a damp basement, you’re afraid to go into as a child.

I am not perfect. I am angry to the point where I react without thinking. I say fuck a lot but who’s to say that’s a bad thing?

I am overly emotional and can overreact. I sometimes feel like I pour too much of my problems on my friends. I can be selfish but again is it bad? Sometimes it’s necessary.

We all have flaws.

Yet the ones who should take some time to reflect, seem to spend their time tearing people down. They love the sound of their own voice or in this case, the sound of their fingers becoming littler personal keyboard warriors to post passive-aggressive shit on a 24/7 basis.

I for one am tired.

Tired of feeling like an afterthought, someone’s personal bank account, someone’s punching bag, someone’s doormat.

I have spent YEARS of my life living in other people’s problems. Being dragged down with them because there’s no one else to hold onto but me.

We all fuck up.

We all make mistakes in life.

But if life is so short, why have you spent most of it being a dishonest fool?

Posting pseudo sympathetic messages on Facebook doesn’t make you a good person.

A good person reflects and grows. Makes changes when things don’t seem to be working.

You do the same things over and over. I know when you spend a long stretch of time not posting on social media, you’re about to come in with a shitstorm.

I know if it’s past 10pm and you’re starting to pick on people online, you are looking for a confrontation, because how else will you get rid of all the pent of frustration?

BUT I AM NOT IT.

I am not the trash can for your garbage anymore.

You have been babied and coddled your entire life to the point where you seem to have forgotten how to function.

So you lash out and talk about how much of an honest man you are.

If you’re an honest man then I am a millionaire.

But we are neither of those things.

 

**People have made assumptions about past writings that I am talking about my fiance, so to clarify: I AM NOT.**

Say When

Ever have someone pour you a drink and tell you to say when? This indicates they’ve poured enough and stops the cup from overflowing.

I find myself wanting to scream “WHEN!!!” at the top of my lungs.

I was always an anxious kid. I was the teen that felt guilty all the time. The young adult that felt trapped. The adult who can’t get herself under control. Always that voice telling me I’ve done everything wrong. That voice that one minute sounds sweet and the next is telling me I’m never going to amount to anything.

A hug and a kiss goodbye and then a message telling me I’m terrible and my future husband will leave me.

Things have changed so much in my life but there’s been a constant. That voice who was thousands of miles away that said they missed me but in the same breath told me I’m getting fat.

That voice that cried wolf if things weren’t going their way. That person who’d try to manipulate me into feeling sorry for them, to apologize to them for things I didn’t even do. Who’d let someone call me a whore. Who would call my phone 20, 30, 40 times just to yell at me cuz I was 23 and it’s past midnight why wasn’t I home. Then I’d be home for a few days in a row and why wasn’t I getting any fresh air?

They bring out the worst in me. They make me angry. I feel things towards them I should not be feeling but that can’t be helped. Because for 33 years I’ve been dragged about and told to straighten my hair because I look like a witch with my hair curly. I was too skinny once then too fat. I lost weight but not enough. They’re so proud of what I’ve achieved but I’m too lazy.

I want to scream “WHEN!!!!!”

But it’s too late. My anger is overflowing.

Saudade in Lisboa

Sitting on a bus heading back home from one of the most amazing weekends I’ve had in a long time, My thoughts are swirling.

Not in a bad way but in a “this year is ending and we are soon entering a new time, another year” kind of way.

I spent time with one of my absolute best friends and I have never laughed and cried so much. I miss her daily because in the misery of living in Germany she helped me. She kept me afloat and laughing.

I also had the opportunity to see one of my favorite bands live, Alter Bridge. I sang so loud and jumped so much that I had to pop out my inhaler twice. Then after the show one of my friends introduced me to Mark Tremonti. A man who’s music came into my life in a time of loss and a lot of pain. It’s poetic then that in a year of loss and struggling, I finally met him. I kept it together, turned and cried on Melinda’s shoulder.

Then talking to my friend I got a bit emotional. This past year was difficult for me in many ways and because he’s a good friend of my fiancé and I consider him a dear friend as well he knows of my struggles and the emotions took over and I cried some more.

My fiancé has been on the road for weeks and I miss him dearly. I’m sitting on a bus already missing my friends. Already missing that energy of screaming my lungs out at a show.

But this weekend felt refreshing. It felt like I have so many people who genuinely care for me. Who’d hurt if I ever hurt myself. I have a fiancé who’d flip the world upside down if it meant I would be okay and happy.

I think the world can be ugly. I think my struggles can sometimes feel like the end of the line but my struggles don’t define me. My tears don’t define me.

My love for my family and friends, my strength that keeps me afloat, and the laughter out of my lungs define the person I am, the person I am fixing and becoming.

I miss so many people and I miss so many experiences that have passed but man am I excited for the ones yet to come.

Where the hell have I been??!

Hello there friends!

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You might be wondering why I haven’t been updating my blog, and why in the past year I have been in and out of here on a very in consistent basis.

 

Well simply put: LIFE. Life happened.

 

For a more complicated explanation then please keep reading.

 

Back in September we moved from Germany to Portugal. It was chaotic as hell before the move, and even more so after wards.

 

I am very grateful that we were able to stay with my parents while we searched for our own place. We found the most amazing place for us and then had to move ALL OF OUR JUNK from my parents’ garage to our new place. While this occurred my fiancé (Oh yea, I got engaged!!) was working on the road.

 

Also grateful for my family’s help, without whom none of this shit would have been possible, and I would have definitely lost my mind and set something on fire.

 

Then we had the holidays which were wonderful. A few battles with the cold and flu. Then January came around and my fiancé (then my boyfriend) asked me to marry him right before he headed out on the road for 10 weeks. Typically, he’s not out for that long BUT, that’s what happened at the beginning of the year.

 

That’s where my mental health went to shit. Before you come in here spewing bullshit. NO it had nothing to do with him leaving for work. I had felt my mental health decline over the span of the move because it felt like we hadn’t had a moment to stop and breathe for MONTHS. It was all a blur of packing, cleaning, unpacking, packing, moving, cleaning some more, building furniture, unpacking. Let me tell you, we STILL have some boxes upstairs because FUCK it’s been exhausting.

 

I hit a very low point, that I would rather not detail here for both my mental stability and your own. Just know it was the lowest I have hit.

 

I got some help. I have been feeling better, but also extremely frustrated.

 

Why?

 

Because I no longer knew what the fuck I was doing with my life(professionally).

With my mental health hitting a brick wall, I stopped working. I had some sprinkles of work, but it dried out. I had zero motivation to bother finding more. I am fortunate enough that I have a partner that had kept us financially stable, but IT ANGERS ME. It angers me that I dropped the ball so bad because of how my brain was communicating with me. I have no other excuse other than I felt like shit and didn’t know where to turn.

 

Now things are looking a bit better, but I am still running into some shit where people want to pay me PEANUTS for a ton of work because they think “anyone can do what you do” SURE OKAY, GOOD LUCK WITH THAT!

 

I am trying to be more positive about this work situation because I did get offered a really cool opportunity which I hope opens the gates to MORE opportunities. I am working on some other projects as well that I am excited about, but it will take some time before I am willing to post about any of it publicly.

 

What else has happened? We got a puppy!! Her name is Luna and she’s a German Shepherd! A beautiful girl who has been a lot of work and early mornings, but it’s been so good for me. Walks in the woods with her make me feel so much better when I start to get that anxious feeling growing in my chest.

Sadly our cat Arya is not a fan at the moment, so I have to divide up my cuddle time, but we are working on changing that.

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What’s happening with this blog?

 

I really am aiming for a more consistent update schedule! I have some backlog of reviews that I am about to post. In general, I hope you stick with me.

 

I hit a really rough patch there, but I am coming out of it stronger.

 

See you in the next post!!

 

The Snakes Start to Sing – Trump Wins,We Lose

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I wasn’t going to write this. I have been voicing my opinions on most social media platforms for the past few days. This isn’t exactly new for me, I am heavily opinionated and unapologetic. If you don’t like what I have to say, you don’t have to listen to or read my opinions.

The past two days I have seen some despicable and terrifying behavior. Trump won the election, and predictably people are scared. Because of this blog I interact online with the book community, this book community tends to be young. They are confused and scared, and I have been loud and vocal about my support for them because they need it. It’s day two and people all over the United States are being very openly harassed and treated poorly by those who think that Trump winning the election equates to them being allowed to do whatever the hell they want. They are running around using the N word like it’s candy in their mouths, and they’re grabbing the hijab off of young muslim girls because “they can” now. Or so they think.

This is what Trump’s hate rhetoric has brought forth. I am not an idiot nor am I blind. Racism has always been around. We are talking about a nation that murdered their way to owning its land, a nation of slavery that moved into an unjust system that keeps minorities down, and a nation where the education still sugar coats thanksgiving and glosses over every single one of its ugly truths. Racism has always been there, But Trump’s win has given every white male and female, every racist scumbag, every white person who’s ever said the phrase, “Not to sound racist or anything but…” a green light to think that they can go out now and openly just be racist and act on those ugly feelings however they want. Acts of harassment and violence are sprouting all over the country.

This angers me beyond words, beyond anything I could eloquently convey on this silly blog of mine. So maybe I have to do it in a less than eloquent way.

STOP telling people to calm down, and that everything will be okay. Right now, and with the acts of harassment popping up all over, nothing is okay. My heart aches for those who are now afraid to step out of their houses. With every tweet I see in this young community of someone feeling lost, alone, and sad I feel 1000 pangs of sadness for them, and then it quickly turns into rage towards those that have made them feel this way. NO ONE should feel unsafe in their home or in their own country.

Then I go onto my personal Facebook page and that rage consumes my very soul. Unhealthy? Maybe, but I can’t help it. People are that fucking stupid. I will make it clear that I have no one who supports trump on my friends list. I ended a 15 year friendship with a trump supporter months ago and I have zero regrets. But some people seem to like making jokes at the expense of others, and some like to just continuously tell people to calm down. To them I say, SHUT THE FUCK UP! You’re either wrapped up in your own ass to figure out how truly disgusting people are being at this very moment or you’re old and completely out of touch with the world today. Either way, I won’t stand for the bullshit anymore. Not that I ever did.

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See this? This popped up on my Facebook. Don’t know the original source, and I don’t care. The person who shared this wrote “Kinda true” so sir, how about you take a fucking seat so I can teach you a quick lesson. The above statement reads like the typical white excuse for horrible incidents. It’s the victim blaming bullshit that most white males nod their heads to while they jack off in their mother’s basement. “Political correctness hysteria” reads like nazi propaganda when you say it out loud. Because no, not every single joke uttered is racist, but yes plenty cross the line. If people don’t want to have something be “hysterical” at the expense of their race or religion, then it’s not fucking funny, and people don’t have to laugh at your shit. “Innocent flirt” hello their Mr.DickandBalls, you don’t get to fucking talk. You don’t have to constantly look over your shoulder when you’re out. Or when you kindly say “No thank you” to your “innocent flirtation” and the guy starts harassing you even further, or in one instance talks about how big his dick is and How I will enjoy it. So FUCK YOU and your innocent flirt. News flash Dick with ears, a culture is not a costume. If Native American’s don’t want you walking into a frat house with a native headdress while you slosh beer all over yourself and woop and hollar then they have every fucking right to call you out on it. Don’t blame the victim you giant piece of shit. That’s not how this fucking works.

You can freely say this shit and act like “no big deal” “jokes on you” because of your excessive white male privilege, but I am going to call you out on it and not give a flying fuck what you think. It’s not going to make you change because people like this basically think the world is too uptight. No, the world is just tired of being harassed, bullied, stepped on, raped, and murdered by white overly privileged shit for brains like you.

I have reached a point where I would rather burn bridges, than continue to hold back and set myself on fire just to make sure you’re warm.

I will keep being a caring, selfless, LOUD FEMINIST BITCH, and you can learn or you can fuck right off.

To those of you who feel scared and alone and need someone to talk to. I am here. Email, twitter, whatever…you can reach out to me.

LOVE & PEACE

Joana a.k.a. Metal and the Geek

A Little Louder for the People in The Back – A Look at Mental Illness

Mental_illness

I feel tired.

I feel tired all the time.

Anxiety and depression can do that, but having to explain myself a million times also does that. I get tired of getting skeptical looks, and strange waves of anger from people because I don’t and CANNOT fit into their mold of what a sick person looks like. Because I am not running a fever, I cannot be ill. Really there’s so much more bullshit that I have dealt with through out my struggles with anxiety that I felt the need to once again talk about it.

Everyone who deals with mental illness deals with it in their own way, not only that but not everyone will have the same feelings and symptoms even when they deal with the same illness. That’s always something that many people can’t seem to grasp. I cannot tell someone else’s tale of struggle, but I can tell you mine.

I was always a really shy kid. I also cried A LOT. When my parents would say that they would pick me up from say the babysitter at a set time, and they didn’t show up at that exact time, I would instantly start to sweat and I would begin to pace and ask a million questions because my mind was imagining the worst kind of car crashes in the world. At the time most people chalked it up to me being an emotional kid, but looking back I think that was just the beginning of my anxiety. I was definitely always known as the weird quiet child who liked to read. I was never a super talkative person, to this day I am not a talkative person, UNLESS of course I feel comfortable with you.

Let’s get a little darker now. I remember a time when I wasn’t aware that what I was feeling wasn’t just normal anxious feelings. In high school, I was told that I definitely had social anxiety. But it wasn’t until my early twenties, that at some point where I was having trouble breathing, I was crying nonstop for what felt like decades, and I dug my finger nails into my face that I finally realized something was really wrong with me. Since then I have sort of learned to manage it but it isn’t something with a cure. I have my really good days and I have my really bad days. I don’t hurt myself anymore, but I do still deal with panic and anxiety attacks.

The thing is, sometimes my anxiety is exacerbated by all of the negative shit that has been thrown my way in the past or even recently. I talk very openly about my struggles for a number of reasons:

  1. I want to be open with the people closest to me and also to the people I work with. Not for pity, but for understanding. There can be days where I have a hard time functioning.
  2. I want other people who are fighting this to know they are not alone.
  3. I want people who are completely ignorant about this, to learn how to deal with someone close to them and their anxiety or depression.

I also do it, because I always get asked weird shit, or talked about in a negative light because people just don’t understand. When I cancel plans with people because the thought of having to be around a group of people or public transportation is just terrifying that day, I don’t need to be told that I am flakey. I am not flakey, I am putting myself and my mental health first. I don’t feel that it is necessary to possibly be alone on a train, having an anxiety attack just to meet up for a drink. That’s not what I will ever do. Many friends stopped inviting me to places in the past, and many people were extremely rude and aggressive about me canceling plans. So when I find someone who understands without missing a beat, I try to hold onto those people. My advice to anyone who has dealt with this is to let go of the ones who tear you down over your struggles, and keep close those who let you take care of yourself first.

Recently someone said that they knew I was trouble when they first met me because I couldn’t look them in the eye when I first met them. This angered me greatly. Not because they don’t like me, not everyone has to like me, I really couldn’t give two flying dicks about that part. It angered me because when I first meet people, I tend to have a hard time making eye contact. Meeting new people causes an alarming amount of stress for me and I have a hard time making eye contact. They took that as me being –I don’t know…some kind of vixen? An evil queen wannabe? Don’t know. It’s just one of the many times someone has misunderstood something about my anxiety and twisted it to make me look bad. It’s not new for me.

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When someone has a physical illness everyone is ready to be helpful, supportive, and show empathy. As it should be. I am quite grateful that physically at the moment I am healthy. The thing is that many people don’t see anxiety and depression as a real illness. They seem to think we are all drama queens who can’t get our shit together. I wish I could be that good at acting because I would probably have an Oscar sitting on the mantle of my big ass house on a hilltop in Portugal. I hate when I have a bad moment in front of people I don’t particularly like or trust because I know from experience how they will use that against me. I also hate getting “advice” from people who have never in their lives dealt with anxiety or depression themselves. Stop telling me to do yoga or to drink tea. I’ve done those things and they don’t work for me. Everything you can possibly name, I have tried it. I already have my ways of dealing with it, but again there ISN’T a cure. You get better with time, and then you will still have a few bad days here and there. It’s just how it goes.

None of us want your pity. We want your respect and yes a little bit of empathy would be nice. If I feel so tired that I need a nap, then let me nap. My brain doesn’t function like yours. It spends hours and days sometimes trying to untangle my thoughts, and that in itself is really exhausting. Pretend my brain is running a bunch of marathons through out the week there comes a point where I just can’t take it anymore. I am drained of all energy.  I do not nap on a daily basis, but if there’s someone out there that does and needs it, then let them. This is another one of those moments where we get told that we are being lazy.

So when I am asked why I constantly talk about my anxiety, my response is because people still think I am being rude, lazy, stuck up, or generally awful all because I choose to do certain things to better my mental health or I do them because my anxiety sort of makes me do things that people find strange. I shouldn’t have to constantly explain myself, but because mental illness is still a topic that many people ignore, I HAVE TO explain myself so I can hopefully make a break through with some people.

Know that this is a REAL illness, and millions of people are struggling to move forward every single day. Stop treating us like we are liars and stop telling us to relax. I promise you, it really doesn’t work that way.

The Hardest Mountain I Will Ever Climb

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I cannot speak for anyone else. This is my story, and as such it will probably be difficult for others to understand. I decided to write this because all day I have felt really excruciatingly tired. About half an hour ago, I felt the back of my neck feel like it was underneath an open flame, I started to sweat profusely and suddenly I felt like my chest was caving in like this is it, this is certainly the time I go. I know what’s happening with the subtle signals my body begins to give me, but it has never made it any easier. I had another panic attack. In fact I am still coming down from it, my eyes still slightly blurry from the sobbing that ensues. First and foremost, I am not writing this for pity. I just needed to write it down. I follow Jenny Lawson and her two books have inspired me to share an aspect of myself that most people are aware of but that they probably don’t quite understand.

I sometimes still feel that when I have panic attacks in front of strangers that they are thinking “Oh god look at this drama queen!” I gotta say that I have even gotten it from people I know, so I can’t exactly expect strangers to understand. I honestly wish I was that good at acting. Sobbing on cue seems like something that could get me an oscar. Unfortunately, I cannot control it.

How do I explain it to you? Well for one, it feels like my mind is a giant mess of wires. You know you probably have a box somewhere with a bunch of different kinds of wires that have different purposes, but they are currently tangled together into a giant useless blob. Well, my anxiety/depression issues are me spending entire days trying to untangle those wires. I could be laying around looking extremely lazy, but the reality in my head is much much different. There I am, day in and day out trying to untangle the wires, and when the end of the day comes along, I feel exhausted. For an outsider it looks like I have done nothing at all, but now you know what it looks like. It is a frustrating situation.

The thing is, I don’t want to stop. The only time it really affected my work, was when I was given Vicodin for pain and it sent my brain chemistry into a frenzy. I was away from work for a week, and I think that might have been my worst moment. Currently, I am dealing with some serious anxiety. I feel okay, and then I don’t, and when I don’t that is when I have a hard time focusing on anything other than those damn wires. I think what helps me is that I genuinely love my job, I also know that I have understanding coworkers. School is getting tougher, but that is to be expected, and I am pushing through, and getting pretty good grades. I think of those things, and there’s always this slight moment of clarity as I panic, where I KNOW I am going to be okay. I just wish that would compute for more than a split second. I think what I really need is to be honest with myself, and get new meds. When someone has a physical ailment no one even blinks when they take medication. So I think I need to be good to myself and just go and figure out what’s best for me.

I decided to share this because like Jenny Lawson, I have decided to be Furiously Happy. Even through this struggle, I tell myself every single day “You are, and will continue to be Furiously Happy” yes, panic attacks are scary, but I am stronger every time I go through it.If you’re reading this and are having a rough time as well, just know there is no shame in asking for help. Go to a professional, and really get the help you need and deserve. Be furiously happy, because we are all climbing this mountain together.