Never limit yourself.
People say “don’t let your obstacles limit you” or perhaps more specifically to the majority of people who read my content “don’t let your mental health limit you” but in reality, that’s just code for don’t put limits on yourself. Because those two abstract things, your supposed obstacles and your supposed ‘disordered’ mental health have never limited you, the majority of the time you just believe they have.
I’ve been searching for some motivation to get me out of my most recent pit and via the other night’s post and the last few days re-reading Nietzsche, I believe I’ve found it. But all of my excitement over future prospects, over my realization, doesn’t belittle the fact that my mental health will indeed, along this path, get in the way.
That’s what it does best: get in the way.
I’ve spent the last two days planning the equipment that I want to start filming. I’ve received a letter from my college where the judges of the “Literary Criticism Category” considered one of my essays ‘masterful writing that successfully and with poetic insight weaves a critical analysis of the two novels . . . insightful and compelling’, gave me first place, and $100. For an essay I procrastinated on (due to many things) and wrote in a few hours. It was ten pages.
To be fair, who knows who my competition was or if I even had any.
I’ve also spent the last few weeks gathering books that I plan to read, one of which is called “The Life and Loves of a She-Devil” by Fay Weldon, another by the name of “Man Gone down” by Michael Thomas and of course “The Psychopath Whisperer” by Kent Kiehl, Ph.D because why not. I mean, I forgive him for using the age old term “Psychopath” when, as a psychological professional, he should know the term ‘sociopath’ or ‘antisocial’ is more properly used for those who have been convicted of a crime already since the majority of his book discusses his time in interviewing prison inmates. But I’ll let him slide.
While I enjoy all the ideas I generate for my filming, while I generally enjoy the award I’ve received, while I enjoy spending hours writing, while I enjoy reading multiple books at the same time (my mother can’t stand doing that) all of it is often thwarted by my beliefs of what I can and can’t do, by my mood, and by my thought pattern.
For example, earlier this morning, about 4:30 a.m, I woke up my boyfriend so he could take me home. We both always fall asleep, we really need to stop doing that because I hate driving that early in the morning and I know he hates driving (if he’s picked me up) too. But because of my anxiety and my obsessive fear of some demonic entity always watching me while I sleep, I sleep better if I’m in the bed with someone other than just myself. It takes me approximately twenty minutes to fall asleep in his room, it takes me an hour and a half in mine.
He falls asleep immediately anywhere, as a comparison.
At any rate, I woke him and he went to the bathroom. I was already awake, sitting up, playing on my phone when I noticed ten minutes had passed. Then fifteen. I started to get worried. First, I thought perhaps he’d fallen asleep in the bathroom. Twenty minutes passed. My social anxiety kicked in: what if I have to walk up there and knock on the door and ask if he was alright and wake up his parents and explain why I’m there at 4:30 a.m knocking on the bathroom door in their hall (they’d came home at 2:40 a.m).
Then came what I guess people would consider “Abnormal thought”. It’s dark in this house, it’s an older house, I’ve heard stories about entities in this house before (although I believe it had been blessed out of it) but what if something else was back? What if it had possessed him?
I’m not religious nor is my family. This isn’t a random fear or a mock of Paranormal Activity for me, it’s a reoccurring paranoid fear. My heart rate rises in my throat, I start sweating, and I’m paralyzed because I fear if I move, I’ll be found out. Think Jurassic Park and the T-Rex’s eye sight.
I believe he’s standing in the middle of the living room, possessed, absent minded, waiting for me to crack open the door so the demonic forces can attack me. So, in the midst of my sweating and paralyzation, I must come up with a way to outsmart them.
I see the dog. I want to wake her as well, but when you move in his bed the wooden frame creaks. I feared if it creaked, the possessed body would barge through the door, wrap it’s hands around my neck and choke me before anyone could hear my screech.
Perhaps I could reach my hand through the bed frame and poke her and get her to go into the living room? No, my arm won’t reach. Damnit.
I’ve heard stories about animals and the supposed paranormal: she would bark for certain if she felt something was wrong with her family. She’s good at barking. If she didn’t bark I would know he’s either generally approachable, or I can have her distract the entity within him while I get the fuck out of the house.
As you read this I’m sure you can see the rational fault within it or at least the unlikely hood of my belief. At this time, I did not. By now a half an hour had passed. I thought about texting him–I couldn’t find his phone so I assumed he took it after all.
Now I’m hearing light footsteps in the kitchen and a clank of something. Am I imagining it? I’m not sure. I waited for him to come through the door. He did not.
After thirty five minutes I essentially leaped from the bed. I peered through the crack in the door into the dark and saw a sleeve of an arm on the couch–turned out to be a jacket. I took a deep breath and closed the door. I texted him “are you alive?”
He responded instantly. He was having stomach issues–the food we’d eaten had left an abnormal feeling in his stomach.
That was relief to hear. I still refused to move or open the door, but when I heard his footsteps for sure this time and he entered without the look of possession, I felt generally comfortable.
For me this type of thing is a constant. I fear of this for many people I’m around, I don’t trust people’s outwardly appearance or what they say to me or who they claim they are. Not because of an underlying fear of possession necessarily, but that can come into play if it’s night time and I’m in a dark house or dark street by myself.
So what does this drawn out story have to do with anything? Even with all the plans I have, with all the things I’m excited to do, I’m very well aware of what I’m going to have to work through to do what I enjoy. As I’ve stated, College has become my Hobby, work (whenever I find it) has become my survival and monetary means to fuel my career. My career is what I can create whether that’s in my studies (medicine and philosophy) or my art (photography, film, writing). I still want to study. I still want to film, do photography, and keep up my writing path.
There are a lot of things I want to do. And lot of reasons why I could tell myself I can’t do them: I’m tired all the time, I’m anxious all the time, I’m uncomfortable all the time, I’m paranoid, I can’t handle noises or conversation and when I least need depression, it strikes me.
Am I ever going to not be those things? I don’t know, none of it seems abnormal to me, it’s always been there. But whether I will or I won’t, there’s one thing I know I won’t be: stuck in a place in my life I despise because I was too afraid to take or create an opportunity for myself.
Success speaks many languages. You have to find the one you understand the best.