Tell ’em

What are some of the strangest reactions you’ve had when you’ve told someone your mental health story?

Do you tell people your story? I know plenty who do not, and for good reason: we’re not exactly the most understood people out there.

But see, I like shocking people. I like making them uncomfortable, watching them squirm. And so I often tell my story to strangers, especially if they approach me on the street trying to hit on me. How do I do it? Well, here’s the way it usually goes.

“Hi, I’m Dave, can I ask your name?”

“Hi Dave, I’m Alishia, nice to meet you.”

“Nice to meet you too. What are you up to today? Any plans for tonight?”

“No real plans, just some relaxation. It’s my day off today.”

“Oh yeah? Where do you work?”

*Insert Cheshire Cat smile in my head*

“I work at a peer respite house.”

“Oh yeah? What’s that?”

“Well, you see we support people who are apart of the county mental health system.”

“That sounds nice. Did you go to school for that?”

“You have to have lived mental health experiences. We do get trained, but we also have to have lived with some mental health challenges ourselves.”

And if that doesn’t make them uncomfortable, if they don’t glance away or squirm or do any of the body language symbols that means I’ve got them by the neck I mention my psychosis. That usually gets them.

What are the benefits and disadvantages to doing this? I don’t see many disadvantages. I of course wouldn’t do this in a professional setting were I applying for some big time job that isn’t mental health related, I’m aware most people have some serious misconceptions of who someone with mental health issues is. But I do it to people I meet or people I’m meeting because I’m not someone who sees my mental health as a disadvantage or something to hide. I see it as something to embrace, something to be fully, wholly comfortable with.

I don’t run down the street screaming I’m crazy, even if that’s what it sounds like. But if the topic comes up in conversation, I casually mention my struggles, and if people struggle with accepting them, that’s not really my problem.

How did I become comfortable with this? I wasn’t in high school. I didn’t like telling people I had anxiety around people because I thought it was a weakness and I didn’t want to expose my weakness for people to play target practice with. I didn’t start getting comfortable until I turned twenty and was forced to tell my boss at the amusement park I was working at so that I could get accommodations. The way he responded was very understanding, and I regret leaving that job without really giving any proper notice.

Sometimes all it takes is one moment in time.

Sometimes all it takes is a little risk.

People will react badly. And if you already know that, you’re already 10 steps ahead of everyone else. And that’s today’s Mental Truth.

My World

Hello wonderful people of the blogs sphere. I’d like to start off by saying welcome to the stream of new people I’ve had follow me recently. You will find out this blog is a clusterfuck of things, so I hope you enjoy clusterfucks.

It gets tedious sometimes speaking about how difficult life gets or how annoying health struggles can be, or how the world (or at least the United States) will most certainly end tomorrow, 11/8/16, and cease to exist for eternity. So today I figured I’d share some photos out of the last few months of my life.

What inspired this? Well, after going through all of my photos on both of my phones I realize I take pictures of random things sometimes. I also realize I take pictures I never look at ever again or even think of again. So, without further ado, here are some:

This is where I am located at the moment. The parking lot of my college campus:

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Classrooms
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Dark Mountains

The wonderful thing about this campus, beside the utter darkness in the picture above, is being located at the top of a mountain. I drove past a group of six deer on the way from one parking lot to the other tonight. They were huddled underneath a bush, not bothered a bit by the passing cars.

This is my boyfriend’s dog. I take way too many pictures of her. She’s a PitBull mixed with something–six months old. They named her Salsa. She’s one of the sweetest puppies I’ve met. She loves treats, licking my entire forearm, jumping, playing tug of war with the rope I bought her (far right picture), and she loves getting her belly and head scratched. They first got her some small stuffed fox, but she tore that apart. I told my boyfriend since she was a PitBull of sorts, she was going to need something a little stronger than a stuffed fox. I once stayed with a family who owned a six month old full bred male PitBull and he loved tug of war ropes. So I bought her one of those and some bones she could chew on instead of their furniture.

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This is a picture of the sky I took about an hour before the sheriff took me to the psychiatrist hospital.

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This is a picture of my math homework from the beginning of this semester. Why did I take a picture of this? No clue. But if you were ever wondering how to do Integration By Parts, there you go.

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The hair products I use for my color treated hair. Why did I take a picture of them? Because I’m an asshole. I have no idea why.

The customization I will, one day, do to some car I own. They have lambo doors for Dodge Stratus’–they have the kit for it, at least–for a very reasonable price. Sometime in the near future, I will be riding around in even more style than I already do. Those headlights though: to die for. Once again . . . I took a photo to be an idiot. I don’t have friends to send these things too, so I have no clue why I take them.

Pictures from the Tech N9ne Calm Before The Storm tour I went to a month ago. The crowd downstairs was okay. Because he had the concert on a weekday (very rare), there weren’t many teenagers under 18 attending (thank GOD).

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This is my father making some kind of face after I marked make up concealer on him. Yes, that is a feather in his hair and a kitchen towel on his shoulder, and yes, the shirt he is wearing is cut off like a crop top, and yes he’s wearing a green shirt underneath it. Dude, don’t fucking ask.

People ask why I’m so weird. This is why. This. Is. Why.

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This is my boyfriend. It looks like he’s holding the salt delicately because he is. And he’s taking it very seriously, as you can see on his face.This is why I love him. Now, if both of us put that amount of concentration and devotion into our school work, we’d be 4.0 students by now.  If he sees this, the first thing he’s going to say is “you talkin’ shit about me on your blog again?”. Watch and see.

This is me taking stupid selfies. Yes, my eyebrows are red and blue. The blue I don’t always put on. The red/magenta is dyed onto my eyebrows so . . . it stays. At one point my hair was violet and magenta, another point just magenta, and right now it’s fading into Magenta-Gold. . . which isn’t as pretty as it sounds.

I am pointing a finger-gun at my temple because someone sent me something stupid, so I sent them that photo back as a response. Get off my back.

And yes, I’m cursed with resting bitch face. I do not smile in photos, unless I’m with people and even then if I hate those people I’ll probably be in the background pretending to hump them with a devilish look on my face or something.

I also don’t like selfies. I dug through way too many photos to find just those three.

I guess I’ve just broken my vow of anonymity and that’s fine. Besides, you still don’t know my name.

Muahahaha I’m evil.

Look at my evilness. Adore it. Envy it. Now get out. 

Hunted On Halloween

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Halloween plans anyone? What did you all do? Do you celebrate the holiday? Do you believe in ghosts and spirits and demons and angels? How many “sexy cat” costumes were there in your town?

I went to California’s Great America Halloween Haunt.If you don’t know, Great America is an amusement park. They had haunted mazes and skits and theater shows and rides going with zombies roaming free.

I bought the passes for my boyfriend and I that gave us extra access to five extra scenes. They were very interesting. I’ll get to that in a minute.

First let me say fuck google. The GPS took us to the employee parking with hundreds of other people also misled by their GPS. The cars lined up all four ways down the street for a few miles. My boyfriend got the idea to cut through a huge parking lot behind a building called “Palo Alto Networks” and we beat a good hour and a half of waiting in traffic.

We had to wait in another line to get the quick passes. They allow us to go to the front of the line to all the mazes, along with experiencing the extra scenes. While we waited, people with nothing better to do than be lazy kept cutting through the line with their pathetic “excuse me’s”, rather than take an extra two seconds and walk around. It was okay at first.

Until the sheep came.

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By sheep I mean the idiots who see one person cut through the line, so they push their family of twenty through too, all muttering “excuse me”. The drunk woman behind me was getting annoyed. I was getting annoyed. My boyfriend was getting annoyed. The guys behind us were also annoyed.

It’s very simple. You see a line, walk around. For someone like me who is already getting worn out from all the of flashing lights, the voices, the people, and the sheer volume of noise around the park, I got easily confused and overstimulated by all the people cutting through the line.

While waiting for one woman to stop arguing with the workers and holding up the line in front, another guy tried stepping in front of my boyfriend and me. I stepped in front of him, and he tried going behind me. The man behind me stepped closer to me and shouted at the guy to “go around! go the FUCK around! Go around, you rude motherfuckers!” and I joined him in the shouting. Why? Because behind that one guy was another three families of people getting ready to push through the line, and I was sick of being bumped and touched.

#TeamworkMotherfucker 

After a half an hour of waiting in that line, all because of that one fucking woman, we got our passes and started the night.

london-ripperIn one of the mazes there were different actors portraying people in history, usually murderers. I jumped a mile in the air at the man in the corner with the top hat and the trench coat standing next to the woman laying with her throat cut: Jack The Ripper. I started laughing and told my boyfriend they should have him following people around. Jack the Ripper heard me, hopped down from his stage and came after me, running with me, and I ducked as he growled in my ear. If you all didn’t know, I’m a huge Jack The Ripper enthusiast. I’ve read and watched about as much as a person could on the guy.

I’m a huge serial killer enthusiast. It’s normal and not disturbing at all.

I got followed by another woman with a huge gash in her forehead, smiling, and she followed me all the way to the end of one of the mazes. I got followed by another short woman playing a little girl with pigtails and she didn’t just walk after me, she ran after me and my boyfriend and he was saying “oh shit, oh shit!” so I squeezed past him because she was really close to me and it was creepy as fuck. I made him get chased by her.

There were several other mazes and funny experiences, but I can’t remember everything.

In the extra scenes, well, let’s just say shit got weird.

ht_hoarder_home_06_jef_150415_4x3_992The first one we entered was called “Hoarder House”. It was a man with a southern accent in a house full of junk and a bunch of (fake) cats. He came up and down the line and called one man “Justin Beaver” and the girl next to him Selena Gomez. He came to me, because I was laughing my ass off, and got right in my face and said “and what’s your name, scaredy cat?”

I said I wasn’t scared. He asked my name again and I told him. He told me to come stand in front of everyone and I said shit and my boyfriend laughed. The guy made me hold a rubber Halloween hairless cat with a missing eye, and he named the cat after me. He told the group that if they didn’t find two keys in the mess of litter boxes around, that he would skin the girl he called Selena Gomez, and poke my eye out. He was great.

The group found the keys. I have both of my eyes and Asian Selena Gomez still has her skin.

We went to another scene called “Dominated”.

Yes, it’s exactly what you think. We could hear the paddles through the wall.

We get in the room and this woman in this sexy outfit has chains hanging everywhere and whips hanging from her hips. She’s hilarious. She handcuffs us in twos, and we have to weave through the chain mazes with our partner. My boyfriend and I weaved through the quickest and she picked on us mostly, saying we’d been handcuffed together before. We all laughed because, let’s face it, she’s not wrong.

At the end, we get paddled.

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I don’t know what to think about that.

In another scene we get shoved in a box with one other person, and air compresses sheets against us, like the walls are closing in. When we step out the guy with the deep voice stares blankly, gestures towards the door and says simply “that is all”. Our entire group cracks up.

Another scene a man gets strangled and we have to run from a woman on the loose.

Another sorority scene, Bloody Mary crawls across the walls at us and right when I tried escaping she crouched on the counter, eye level with me, blood dripping everywhere, and stared into my soul.

I got followed a lot. There’s something about me that guys in costume and women with blood on their face get attracted to. I was hunted by these people the entire night.

I got home and passed out immediately. The level of sensory overload was too damn high. But it sure did beat not being scared. I love being scared. Halloween is the greatest holiday I do declare.

Now, let me get my ass out of the library before they kick me out. Be safe people.

Sports Through The Eyes Of A Socially Anxious Recluse

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I’ll let everyone in on another little fact about me.

I’m not a huge sports fan. When I say huge, I mean I don’t go online to find updates or watch games every Sunday, or go hardcore for a certain team, and I definitely don’t have names of players memorized and I don’t know what positions people play.

My boyfriend is the exact opposite. We’re almost the exact opposite in everything. He loves sports–you know, things like Soccer and american Football, probably not something like cricket or or golf I don’t think, I’d have to ask. Golf is considered a sport right?

Why?

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If you know stuff about american Football or you just live in America you’ve probably heard of the Oakland Raiders and that’s the team his family are huge fans of. Now I grew up watching football with my family, particularly on holidays or during playoffs, but we never rooted for specific teams all together. My father rooted for different teams depending on the game, but if a team from California was going against a team from some other state, he’d root for the team from California because he grew up in California–you know, 49ers, Raiders, whatever. My mother grew up rooting for the Lions because she grew up in Michigan.

Yes, you can laugh, it’s fine.

Anyway, I grew up not rooting for anyone. I watched the games but they always took so long my wild brain couldn’t focus on them, especially during slow games or during games where one team blew out the other. I just couldn’t focus on it. I had to be doing something else–writing, reading, thinking, playing games, anything that let my imagination fly a little more than a sports game required.

I liked playing them in school for physical education. I actually fell in love with flag football, although with my anger I would have much preferred to play tackle football. Knock a bitch out.   I was the one everyone threw the ball to because I bobbed and weaved and scored and did a dance and flipped everyone off.

I never flipped them off, I would have got in trouble.

Had I been less anxious , I probably would have tried several sports teams. I probably would have tried out for football. We had one girl on the team and she was big and she could truck the shit out of you. Too bad she didn’t ever get put in. I could have scored some touchdowns if people just threw me the ball. I could have had two people on my ankles and I would have dragged them into the end-zone with me.

Our high school football team was embarrassing. The first game I ever saw we lost 54 to 7 or something.

So I grew up around sports, but never got attached to them in ways some people do.

jonahImagine my surprise when I found out how adamant of a fan my boyfriend was and how adamant of fans his entire family was. I knew I’d be introduced to sports culture.

 

I’m honestly surprised at how fun it can be.

 

I’m not a jump out of my chair, scream, hop, and almost break my neck find of person at games. I might clap and cheer at the most. Obviously–I have social anxiety, I’m not going to be one to point myself out in a crowd even if the crowd around me is doing the same thing.

It’s funny I’m rarely anxious sitting in the crowd at a stadium that holds so many people and makes bank and therefore tries to make you feel at home, like you’re part of their profit when you’re never going to be. During time outs and halftime and stuff, that’s what I do by the way. I look around the stadium at all the people and I look at the giant screens advertising things calling everyone part of the family and emphasizing the importance of loyalty and it makes you feel like a part of something and I’d say that’s a sure fire way to keep your wallets open. I know most people are just fans enjoying their team and rooting for their team but do they see the creepy factor of it? The George Orwell kind of “Big Brother” factor of it telling you to be “Loyal” and “you’re part of our family” kind of creepiness?

I’m being 100% serious. I saw an advertisement promoting loyalty.

It’s creepy. I’m sorry, it’s creepy. It’s like a cult.

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You’re the one spending all the money and they’re the one making all the money and the only thing your loyalty gets you is 10 percent off a keychain or something.

That being said, it doesn’t make anything less enjoyable. I actually enjoy being in the stadium with all the energy and the people (yes, even the people) and I like watching the little football players running around like crazy people and leaping on top of each other and getting pissed as fuck when a play gets ruined. I like how you can be anticipating one thing and the exact opposite of what you hoped happens. It’s exciting as hell!

Just because I don’t jump around and act like I have rabies does not mean I’m not enjoying myself. I just enjoy myself in a different way. Because I’m different. That’s just who I am and even when I get my social anxiety under control, I’ll still be that way. I’ll still be the one analyzing the creepy factor of the sports culture and sitting quietly and if you EEG’d my brain you’d see I’m enjoying every moment of it to the same degree the dude across the aisle who gulps beer and screams “fuck yeah motherfucker! Fuck the Chiefs! Fuck you!” and jumps around and hugs the people next to him in a moment of fan-to-fan bonding is.

I don’t mind rooting for the Raiders regardless of whether they win a lot or lose a lot. Their clothing and hats just happen to be my style, they know how to rock the right music at the stadium, and hey there’s always a lot of different kinds of people at the games–black, white, Hispanic, whatever, it’s always a good amount of different cultures.

But there is one thing I draw the line at:

Living in Oakland, California.

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That’s about as likely to happen as me shoving a spoonful of tarantula babies in my mouth.

We don’t live very far from there, maybe an hour and a half or so, but fuck. That. Shit. Straight up. It’s time for the half ghetto part of me to come out. I ain’t living in a place where motherfuckers get shot walking their dog in the hills in broad daylight for no apparent reason. They didn’t even rob the dude! They shot him and left him! In the supposed “good part” of town! Fuck that. Fuck. That.

My boyfriend always says he wants to live in Oakland and I’m like that’s so cool, I hope I can visit you often because if there were only two towns in the world and I had to choose between living in my tiny ass, beach-ass, boring-ass town where the biggest attraction is a boardwalk with old ass wooden roller coasters for the rest of my life, and living in a city where I’m 100% sure the zombie apocalypse Crips and Bloods dictate people’s lives,  I’d choose my tiny ass town.

Yes, it’s nice the majority population is African American in Oakland. It is not nice the majority of the city is ghetto as fuck. Whatever happened with Oakland? I’d like some history on it. It’s not ghetto because there’s a lot of black people. Something must have happened historically for it to be so ghetto.

cover_smallLike how cities were red-lined back in the day as “dangerous” and that’s why suburbs emerged–“come live here white people, away for those dangerous ethnic people. They might rob you. We’ve got the perfect house for you on the outskirts of town”.

And that’s why suburbs are often named “white suburbia”. Because it was made for white people.  And just as another side note, for all the people who say “everyone has an equal opportunity to come up in America”, tell me how is it equal if you grew up in an apartment with unstable parents crippled by debt and had to start working when you were fourteen to help pay the pills and therefore sacrificed your education compared to someone who grew up in a house with two parents and a picket fence and got help with their homework because their parents went to college or at least finished high school? Who do you think will have a determined type of mindset? Who do you think will be encouraged to make something of themselves? Who do you think has more of an opportunity to be around people who have made something of themselves?

It’s not about race. I don’t care if the apartment kid was white and the house kid was black. If you grew up in a suppressed environment, your drive and your motivation is going to take some time to conjure and you’ll be more likely to make uneducated decisions than your counter-part. That’s just a fact of life.

Anyway, that was a tangent.

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Stadiums are simultaneously exciting and creepy, I enjoy going to games, my social anxiety isn’t too bad at them, I just won’t talk or scream or break my neck, and I’ll never live in Oakland.

End of discussion.