Does It Get Better?

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Dear little Amie,

Does it get better?

Yes and no.

Yes, the hatred you feel will stop burning in your veins. The anger that causes you to tear your hair in the closet won’t follow you any longer. The anger that constricts your voice and kills all those around you will no longer poison you.

No. The pain will still be there, just morphed and changed. It’ll still squeeze your chest and cause rants. You’ll still lie to people and tell them you’re fine when you’re dying inside.

Yes. The people that used to hurt you so much will no longer cut holes in your heart. No, you won’t get along with them. Yes, you will be breathing freely, but no. You won’t be the olympic athlete.

Yes, you won’t have to spend each morning trying to swim through your own mind. You’ll be better, you’ll be able to run, you’ll be singing and laughing again without a cough.

But no, you’ll still be up at two in the morning, wondering why you’re alive. You’ll be asking your body to just give up the fight, but unlike your mind, it’s not a quitter.

Yes, you’ll have people supporting you, pushing you back up when you fall and swear to yourself that you can’t move again. They’ll be there, and no, they won’t always know what to say.

But sometimes being there is louder than any of the words they’ll ever be able to say.

No, you’ll still wonder at times if this life is worth living. If the stars are worth seeing. You’ll wonder if the Word is worth reading, and the songs worth singing.

But yes, someone will look at you and say I love you. And you’ll realize that you’re important. Why? Doesn’t matter. To some people, you’re important. Some people need an Amie in their lives.

No, some people will still be unable to understand you. People will still say things that burn, do things that hurts, and refuse to let you through. But you will learn that they aren’t worth your time. They won’t take their words back, but you don’t need them to do that.

Yes, Amie. Overall, it’ll get better. You’ll have relapses. You’ll sit on the floor, wishing you could cry the tears that simmer underneath. You’ll be on your bed, silent because the thoughts in your mind are too loud for music. You’ll refuse to talk to people, you’ll neglect food.

But each time you’ll come out stronger. More determined not to let your mind to take control of your life. Each time, you realize that you’re a fighter. But you’re not the only one fighting.

There’s One that shines through, stronger than you. One that can fight better than you do. One that won’t let you go through with the lies that are whispered to you.

So fall apart, but don’t let the fragments shatter.

Because remember, it’ll be better.

Perhaps, it’ll get worse before it’s better. But always, in the end, it’ll get better.

Chin up, future Amie. You’ll get through.

~~Amie~~

2019 in Review

(Caution: This post talks about depression, and self-harm. If these trigger you, please do not read.)

Well, guys, the end of an era has come. 

Eh, perhaps that is a bit dramatic, but isn’t that what it feels like? Perhaps it’s only me that feels that way. But today as I look forward to the future, part of me feels the inkling of fear that has never been there before when I look towards a New Year.

Maybe the only way for you guys to know why the fear is there is for me to tell you about 2019. You’ve been around me, supporting me for some of it. But the rest of it was hidden, because I wasn’t ready to share about it.

Am I really ready to share about it now? Probably not. But it’s time.

I ended 2018 hopefully.

I went back recently to look over my posts of 2019, and some of you might have noticed how abruptly they changed. How little I began posting. I went from fun, inspirational, informative posts…to nothing. Or poems, or basically just depressing rambles where I walked lost in the track of my own mind.

Because guys, I’ve spent 2019 lost. This year has probably been the hardest year of my life, though it might be rivaled with 2016. A lot of things I’ve been trying to bury in my life all reared their ugly heads, and while I hate being real and serious about anything, and I hate opening up to people, it’s time.

I made a YouTube video about it as well, which is put down at the bottom of this post, where I read more of my journals and kinda just spoke from my heart. And I thought that instead of trying to pack everything into one post, I would put it in a blog post and a video.

Being lost is really hard, especially when you don’t tell anyone you’re lost, and you’re just wondering through your own brain trying to find a way out. Trying to find a way through fog and emptiness. When it becomes a rarity to feel any kind of emotion, you purposefully do things so you can feel again.

For three months I stopped eating more than one meal a day. I lost all hunger, food all tasted bland. It wasn’t until my mom started crying in front of me, asking me to eat that I realized what I was doing. Because when you’re lost, your pain and confusion doesn’t hurt just you, it hurts everyone around you. At least, everyone that loves you.

During this time I had nightmares, I had times where I would remember things that happened years ago, and I couldn’t sleep. I didn’t want to sleep. I was scared. Honestly, the only way to describe a lot of my feelings was to write poems. So I wrote, and wrote, and wrote.

But I showed no one, I didn’t tell a single soul about what was happening. I hinted. I looked for one of my friends to see, one of my friends to pull me out of the fog. Instead, each one of the friends that I thought were my closest friends, the people I thought really cared for me, pushed me away and failed me. Two even left me.

Ghosted, alone, and lost, I started to stress about everything. It got to the point that I couldn’t stop scratching myself. An area of my body would be one, large inflamed scab because I couldn’t stop. I didn’t want to stop. I wanted to feel something, I wanted to relief of actually doing something and seeing the fruitfulness of it.

But I wasn’t friendless. Four people in my life would spam me as I went weeks without talking to anyone online. Weeks without answering messages.

And I had God. The only person I could scream at, the only person who would listen without me speaking. God was there in the darkness, He was there in the fog. God never leaves His children in the thicket. He carries His precious lambs on His bosom. Our God goes after that one lamb, lost in the fog, in the emptiness, in the despair, and leaves the ninety-nine happy, healthy sheep.

Because that lamb is worth it.

The lamb that sees themselves as a big fat mess, that thinks they’re worthless, that they’re not enough.

God wasn’t going to leave me, no matter how much it felt like he did. He heard every time I screamed internally, He heard me say I couldn’t go on, I couldn’t wake up another day. He felt my mental pain, my emotional numbness, and my physical problems.

He felt them all when He walked the earth as a man. And He understood.

All along when I was sure that I was left alone, neglected by the people I loved, He was standing next to me. Holding me, helping me.

One day I woke up, and I realized that there was no way I wanted to continue living this way. And a week later I realized there was no way I could live this way. And so I started trying to figure out ways to help depression without actually taking medicine.

I went on an elimination diet, eating nothing except meat and certain vegetables and fruits for a time. It was hard, but I started feeling better, and I have since realized that dairy causes quite a bit of brain fog and depression for me. So dairy was knocked out, and I’ve been staying away from gluten, and yes. I feel so much better, physically and mentally.

But that still wasn’t enough.

I had been encouraging a friend to talk to their parents about their problems, and I realized that I was such a hypocrite. Because I had left my parents out of my problems.

My mom suspected (or maybe she knew, I’m unsure), but I went and told her first. And even though that was one of the scariest things I’ve ever done, it was one of the best things I’ve ever done. My mom has since been trying to help me. And because of her positive response, I told my dad, and once he realized how serious it was, he too, has been doing everything he can to help me.

And you wanna know what? Another ray of sunshine peaked through my clouds. My niece is one of the smiliest babies, and I’ve been able to go over and take care of her, to hold her and realize that life is worth living, and that one hard year doesn’t mean a hard life.

Quite a few Christian girls got together and sent me an encouragement box in May, and one slip of paper has become my motto. I don’t know which of the girls made it, but all of the scriptures and encouragements are on the wall, but this one has just stuck with me.

Hold
On
Pain
Ends

And that’s what I want you all to get from this post. Hold on. Please, hold one even when it seems the rope is fraying, that your heart is breaking, and you will soon be no more. Because pain ends, just as tears only last a night.

Sunshine and laughter comes in the morning.

And I hope you all have a wonderful 2020. ❤

~~Amie~~

Brutally Honest

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Well, guys.  This isn’t going to be the usual Crazy A post.  Probably because I don’t feel like the usual Amie.  I’m going to be brutally honest about my life right now.  Brutally.

I’m not doing this to receive likes, or for sympathy.  I’m doing this because someone out there is going through something similar, and they need to know that they’re not alone.

I’ve hinted that my life hasn’t been easy.  Since March I’ve been struggling with things.  I’m not going to give you a whole run down on everything because that would take too long, and you would be bored by the end of it.

But in March, I just kinda lost my drive.  Lost my want to do anything.  I lost me.

And that was the scariest thing that had ever happened to me.

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There’s this part of me that’s outgoing, bubbly, fun-loving, and takes everything in a stride.  It felt as if she was frozen inside of me, and instead of pushing me onward, dreaming huge dreams, and having ambitions, she was a heavy weight that pulled me down in the sea of life.

And I was afraid she wouldn’t come back.

I didn’t want to get up in the morning, and I ate constantly, hoping that eating would help her come back.  She came back for short snippets, but I felt so alone, so lost, and so empty.

During this time, my dad was having tests because the doctors had noticed something wasn’t right.  At the end of March, he went in to have a scope of his pancreas, which led to pancreatitis, and a rushed visit to the ER, which ended with him staying in the hospital for a week.

A week in which my brother and I were responsible for watching my siblings.

The day that my dad left for the hospital, I cried like I haven’t cried in a long time.  I was scared and I was mad.  The part of me that was frozen, dead-weight was heavier than ever before.  I tried calling my best friend, but she didn’t answer, and I felt so alone in that moment.

But here’s the part you need to know before you feel sorry for me.  I chose to be alone.  My siblings were downstairs.  Most, if not all, of them came upstairs to check on me.  My three-year-old sister hugged me, but I sent her away.

I have this strange idea that I have to protect myself from other people loving me.  I have to keep myself to myself, and just be a happy friend, a listening friend, a loving sister to the people around me.  And when I’m hurting, or alone, I should keep to myself.  No one wants my emotional baggage, right?

WRONG.

We weren’t born into this world to live alone.  A quote that I love by George MacDonald says, “The desire to be loved–which is neither wrong nor noble, any more than hunger is either wrong or noble–and the delight in being loved, to be devoid of which a man must be lost in immeasurably deeper, in an evil, ruinous, yea, a fiendish selfishness. Not to care for love is the still worse reaction from the self-foiled and outworn greed of love.”

I’m selfish, because I believe it’ll be easier for everyone involved if they don’t have to take care of me.  My mom and I were talking about this the other day, and she made a good point.  If someone loves you, one of the ways they want to show that is taking care of you, even if that’s only listening to how you feel.

And that night, or a few nights after, I was able to have an amazing talk with my best friend.  She listened to me, I let my guard down, and she cried with me.  And honestly, that made the whole week so much easier than it would have been otherwise.

She confronted me, and told me that I was living in fear.  And she was right.  I was afraid of change.  I was afraid of what might happen with my dad.  I was afraid of people hurting me.  I was afraid of being me, and I was afraid of being honest about how I felt.

My best friend is a prayer warrior, and honestly, I can’t thank God enough for putting her in my life.  I honestly wouldn’t know what to do without her good morning text.  But even a good morning text didn’t keep me from disappearing within myself.

When my dad came home, he was so weak from not eating for a whole week.  My mom was stressed, which was expected, but my home felt charged with electricity.  I felt in the way and like I was just stressing everyone more, and so I left to stay in my room.

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The next day was April Fool’s, so I was stupid and joined a prank online that failed.  The joke ended up annoying and hurting people.  It’s all forgiven now, but that night I stayed up until one, wishing I could cry, but not being able to.  I hurt so badly because I had hurt other people.  It was also too late for me to talk to anyone, and so I didn’t tell my parents for two or three days.  It just hurt.

That Tuesday I felt like the world was smushing me.  I wasn’t feeling well due to allergies (I had them so bad this year.  *groans*) and I just didn’t have the desire to live, or to do anything.  But you know what?  A friend sent me a playlist of songs, and as I laid on the floor of my room, I listened to truth.  Just plain, beautiful, truth.  I didn’t heal all the way, and the me I was missing didn’t come home, but the fact that they actually sent me those songs meant a lot to me.

(Music is such a personal thing to me, that when people actually send me songs, or care what I listen to, it means so much.)

I don’t talk much about my music on my blog.  It’s a part of me that’s like an emotional release.  Similar to writing, but to me music is more personal.  And I haven’t had any energy or desire to be serious about it.  The beginning of this year, I arranged three songs, and I played dozens of songs, but the past two months have been a dry spell.

I didn’t feel the need to play music.  I didn’t see how it would fit in my future, and I didn’t see how it was benefiting myself or others.  I was tired of trying to do everything, and tired of being me.

 Actually, I was tired of trying to be me when the person I always thought was me wasn’t there.

I felt like I couldn’t talk about it because there wasn’t anyone to talk to.  My mom saw something was wrong, and I can’t begin to say how thankful I am for her pulling it out of me and listening to me.

And then I had an asthma attack.  I’ve never had “asthma,” though for the last two years I’ve had trouble breathing, especially in the spring/summer months.  I spent a whole morning panting, because I needed to get through church.  When I almost passed out, I let my mom take me to the urgent care.  Thankfully, they cleared everything up and now I have the medicines I need.

But not feeling well depressed me even more.  I just want to disappear, but again, I couldn’t let people know how I felt, and so I just kinda pretended I was okay to all my friends.  I’ve never understood depression, I don’t know if I would say I was depressed, and so I didn’t want everyone to think I had something wrong with me.

I stopped eating because I just didn’t want food. Food didn’t taste good to me; I was unhappy, and I was mad at myself for being unhappy.  And so I was just in a deep hole, and I didn’t know how to get out.

During this time I got so many encouraging emails from my newsletter followers, and from friends.  But doubt crept in, telling me that they didn’t know the real Amie.  If they did, the wouldn’t love me any more.  They wouldn’t care for me.  They wouldn’t say those nice things or try to encourage me.

But I’ve fought the lies.  People in my life DO care.  And they want to show that they care by loving me, and by helping me out and praying for me.

My dad has been diagnosed with cancer, and my life has been rather on the strange side as my whole family tries to take care of him, and each other.  I’m trying to stay optimistic, to keep the me that has been frozen alive.  I’m forcing myself to keep on top of the things I’ve committed to, and forcing myself to answer people, to pretend everything is normal.

But not everything is normal.

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My life isn’t normal, and I’ve got to accept that.  There is no such thing as “normal” in the way that we think.  It’s something that everyone strives after, and someday we all have to accept the fact that there is no normal, or else we’ll live very unhappy lives.

The past week I’ve opened up to more people about my life at the moment, and so many people have begun praying for me and my family.  I’m hungry again, I’m happy again, and I’ve learned something.

We don’t hold the key that lets us out of ourselves, out of our depression, but we hold something even better.  We have the Bible, and that gives us the key.  If you’ve never read the Bible, if you’ve never spent time in God’s word, I would encourage you to start.

You’ll never really be happy and at peace until you meet the Prince of Peace.  For He gives us the peace that surpasses all understanding. (Philippians 4:7)

~~Amie~~