Writing 101 Assignment #1 – Free writing

When I write, I’m careful about each sentence. I agonize, edit, preview, and rewrite many times before I publish, so free writing is a little scary for me.

I have spent hours thinking about what I would write. There’s always a number of things running through my brain at any given time. So what am I going to write about? I don’t have a clue, but here I am trying to come up with something to write.

It’s a struggle to just let go, write with wild abandon, without a care for grammar, spelliGrammarng, or punctuation. What if someone, probably you, judges what I’ve written? “It shouldn’t matter,” we all say that about other people’s opinions, but it does matter. That’s why hater’s have so much power.

A news anchor on Global TV read a few letters from hater’s. They were upset about the clothes she wears. She’s pregnant and people feel she should cover up that big bump with more appropriate clothing. People have written in to tell her how big she is, and how inappropriate her attitude is.

So, she responds to the ugly, hate mail by telling everyone how hard she tries to block the hate, but then catches herself looking in the mirror to check out her size. She asked her husband what he thought about her clothing choices. She hates that the haters got to her. She mentioned that when we say something ugly, a little bit of it will stick.

The one letter she received was from a group of people. They didn’t sign their names or give a return address. In typical bully fashion, they hide behind their hate like the cowards that they are.

This anchor’s co-anchors add their two cents. One of them feels that this kind of mail doesn’t deserve a response, the other co-anchor gets in her own dig, commenting on their poor grammar and spelling. I’m not a hater, but this is as I stated earlier, my worst fear.

I guess what I really fear is looking stupid because seriously, poor grammar portrays someone as uneducated and lazy. My timer went so I’ll wrap this up.

I have a confession, I can’t ignore the prompts that let me know when I’ve made a mistake. Kudos to everyone who wrote freely. I’m stuck in grammar jail.

Fear, Self-loathing and Suicide

DarknessI knew you were back, your whispers stirring up anxiety and self-doubt. I make plans with every intention of following through, and I look forward to my plans with trepidation and excitement. But then you show up whispering doubts in my ear. All the what-ifs and the questions about my ability to cope.

Your name is Fear, you are relentless in your pursuit to bring me down, and you almost always win. By the time you leave me I’m sick with worry, wondering why I made plans in the first place.

I wish it stopped there but you can only do so much, so you hand me over to Self-loathing. Self-loathing and I go back a long way, so far back I don’t remember a life without her. She shows up after I realize that I will cancel, I will disappoint and then I will retreat from the world.

Self-loathing is ruthless, scornful and condescending. She knew I couldn’t do it, she knew I would give up. She tells me I am weak and stupid and worthless. I will never amount to anything because I’m too lazy, I don’t have the drive and I’m a failure. Yea, I’m a failure alright, a big one. My life is proof of that, my marriage ruined and my children growing up with a mother whom was barely present. Self-loathing always leaves me broken, at the edge of the abyss, a bottomless, dark hole of despair.

Suicide has impeccable timing, waiting and watching to step in. She likes to come to me when I have nothing left, so I’m an easy target for her taunts. Her voice is hypnotic almost soothing as she asks me if life is really worth living. After all I’ve destroyed, wouldn’t it be a better world without me in it?

My children won’t have to worry about me anymore, they could get on with their lives. Seriously, it’s not like I was a good mother, I caused them so much heartache. Am I doing anything important with my life? Am I making the world a better place? Hardly. My kids, my friends and family will miss me but there’s a lot they won’t miss. Suicide lulls me with her promise of peace, but somehow I manage to allude her.

I can pull myself back from the abyss, lick my wounds and wait to heal. Mental illness is sly, never revealing more than it has to In one afternoon my three tormentors can visit me and leave me for dead, without anyone knowing they stopped by to see me. When I feel strong again, I’ll show my face, and no one will be the wiser. I’ll be back to the happy, smiling me, the face I show to the world.

Life goes on and so do I, like so many others in my mental club. We carry our scars on the inside and we carry on the best way we know how.  I have a lot of time to make up for, but first I have to make amends.

Note to my loved ones: I am OK and not in danger of hurting myself. Today, I only had to deal with fear and self-loathing.