Here we go

Why, hello there. I see we’ve both ended up here somehow, maybe by accident or maybe because we are searching for something. That search is never-ending, and in some ways new discoveries simply open up new things that must be discovered. Such is the function that we are living out.

We live in a time now where it’s easier than ever for people to create and share their stories with more and more people all over the world. If you have the basics like access to the internet, you can start a blog or podcast or YouTube channel for free, and potentially live off of simply sharing your stories. Are we taking back the power from powerful corporations who pay us to let them show their ads on our work? Or are we becoming part of the machine and playing even more into their hands? I don’t know. What I do know is that it’s nice to have someone listen to you, and it’s nice to come across someone who’s been through – or currently going through – something that you can strongly identify with. And for better or worse, the sharing economy has at least enabled us to do that. It’s hard not to see the Prettification of our world (for all you Scott Westerfeld fans out there) where your reputation and your channel, your brand, is an extension of who you are and what you’re able to do in life. No longer is the daily grind the destiny for most of us to have a stable income. And surgeries, medications, and other products are becoming more and more prevalent as a means to create our ideal selves. Maybe social media is a way for us to create our ideal lives. I think for some people it is. For me it definitely is, sometimes. It’s hard not to, because it’s just so easy. Just pose the way you want, and post what you want. You can tell any story you want.

Right now I hope my story will be one of exploration, of discovery, and of companionship. Some of you reading this may know me personally. Or think you know me. Or only know what you want to think you know. The point is, everyone has multiple aspects to them, and you really can’t know a person entirely. The best we can do is listen. Not judge. I hope to do that.

I hope to be one of the many people you come across who knows a little of what it’s like to be you. We reflect God and each other, and seeing these reflections helps us to feel a little more whole. It’s less isolating. For me, when I try to express myself to someone and they just haven’t had any experience with what I’m talking about, to the point where they can’t even accept what I’m telling them, I feel crazy. I feel like there’s something wrong with me, that I’m a freak. The problem is that feeling alone and that no one understands you might get you to thinking that you don’t matter. What does it matter what you do, if no one sees you anyway? Who cares?

Hopefully you can find a safe space here where you can be yourself, even if only in your own head, where no one will tell you that you’re fine or that you should just be grateful you’re not a starving orphan in China. Your problems are real. They may be more or less dire than someone else’s problems, but I’d like you to tell me a single problem that was solved by comparing it to another problem.

God created us to be in communion with Him, but also with each other. That’s why He decided it wasn’t good for Adam to be alone. God sent Jesus to live like us so that we know that Jesus knows what it’s like to be us, not as someone watching our story unfold from a screen, but as someone who has stepped into the story with us and actually felt everything we feel.

A little about me, which will hopefully also be a little about you. I’m a millennial/generation Z, depending on which site you consult. I’ll be 24 this year, and I have a son who will be 5. I hate the idea of growing older because I feel like I haven’t done much with my life, and I miss being young and feeling like I had more potential. I was usually ahead of the people in my peer group, and I guess I made that part of my identity because that’s how people told me I was special. Now I feel like I’m constantly trying to keep up and surpass people so I can be special again, and feel okay again. It’s caused a lot of problems in my life, hence becoming a mom at the age of 19.

I’m a writer, I’m an entrepreneur, and I’m a dreamer. Like sometimes that’s all I do is just dream about things. I take on way too much sometimes, trying to be the best and outperform everyone else, and prove to myself that I’m worth something. I have many forms of anxiety and depression, and I’m a recovering sex addict. My list of mental health issues include premenstrual dysphoria, social anxiety, perfectionism, seasonal depression, and ADD, Sometimes I feel like a walking soup of acronyms. Sometimes I wonder what the point of all these distinctions is, but then I remember last year when my ADD was discovered. I remember the relief, because for 20 years I assumed that I was just stupid, or lazy, or just destined to be a failure for my whole life. I think identifying your issues helps you to reframe your struggles, and access better ways to get the help you need, because maybe you were trying to help yourself someone else’s way but it was like trying to force a square peg into a round hole.

I’m also adopted. I was raised primarily in a white-bread town of conservative farmers and oil and gas workers, and I rarely felt comfortable in my own skin. For a while I was just completely freaked out about being black, because literally no one looked like me in my town, and if we did see another black person, whoever I was with would go absolutely insane and insist we go talk to that person, or they would come up and go crazy over me. I was a terrible white person because I wasn’t white, and I was often made fun of by black people for not being black enough.

I’m a Canadian. I’m an Albertan. And that doesn’t always mean what you think.

Oh yea, and I’m a Christian. I like being steeped in the Holy Spirit, though sometimes it’s elusive when all my other things get in the way. I’m grateful that God loves me no matter what, even if I forget that 90% of the time. Hoping to bring that down to 80%. As broken as I am, I’m hoping to let God turn my life into a living Church for him, and that He can pour Himself out through me. Hopefully we can bring that up to 10% of the time and beyond.

So, there. I don’t know how often or what I will post, but I generally just want to be a light for Christ in this darkness of mental health struggles, and a voice of social justice as I think God would want me to be. It’s always unsettling putting all these things out there, because sometimes it feels like I’m a different person in “real” life than I am online. There will always be haters, I’m sure. But I’m praying for you. If something sucks for you right now, I’m sorry. If it helps, it sucks for me too. Hopefully between the two of us it can suck half as much.

So, welcome. Welcome to my world, my struggles, my triumphs, my blah, my yay! and my meh. Welcome to spelling mistakes and relapse and failure. Welcome to success, and rest and run-on sentences. Brush off your Bible and your journal and your deep thoughts and your Big Book or your White Book and your 24 hour chip, and let’s get started.

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