ka ti ec up ca ke

Leprechaun Trap...I mean playground.

For school, Paisley's class was given the option of building a leprechaun trap to share with her class.  But honestly, if we call it a "trap," what leprechaun or anything for that matter, willingly come.  I know that gold is irresistible to him, like Goldilocks bursting into strange houses uninvited...  So maybe the leprechaun will think ours is a wonderful playground.  Or maybe he'll think it's a land with wonderful curiosities like bobbles and bits, the best holiday themed men's finery, and a road that strangely resembles the yellow brick road, only this one is more messy because the glitter gets stuck to little green shoes.  I assume that'd only delight him though.

Despite what the picture up there says, it is most definitely not a trap.  Or is it?  The idea is that the leprechaun becomes enticed by the glittering road of gold.  When he comes to the sign of gold glitter, he knows he's in for a treat.  Then he spies the giant gold necklace treasure dangling just barely beyond that ladder.  So he climbs it, and WHOOSH!  His first step onto the top of the unsecured hat makes it collapse.  And he is stuck inside the oobliette.*  Sounds like a pretty fun playground to me, Mr. Leprechaun.

They're due by tomorrow, so everyone can have the chance to share their creation.  We were busy until bedtime on Monday with birthday celebrations (thank you so incredibly much to everyone who stopped by and sent happy wishes. They made my day a little brighter.) so we didn't get to it that day.  Yesterday, I was busy with psychology homework and, ironically, a visit with my therapist.  We didn't get back until allllmost bedtime, but I let Steven and the kids play Minecraft, which I really really do not like (we're not supposed to say "hate," even though I do), because they were in the middle of fighting the Ender Dragon which would mean they would beat the game and, therefore, we would not have to play it anymore.  So it seemed logical to let them stay up a few minutes longer than normal.  Paisley had to do the homework in her notebook and read me her book from school while we watched.  I showed her my idea for the trap, I mean playground, which she approved of.  We decided to build it Wednesday (today) afternoon so she could take it on Thursday (the last day you could bring them in).  Then Steven said, "she probably isn't going to school Thursday, or if she is, it's only going to be for a couple hours."  Gasp!  I had forgotten!  We are going on a trip to Williamsburg, Virginia, kind of for my birthday, kind of not.  

This morning, I woke Paisley up a tiny bit early (I had slept through my first three alarms), and we put together her place of curiosities for a little leprechaun to enjoy.  The night before, after I had finished my psychology homework, I had downloaded a kindle book on my computer, and printed the template for the St. Patrick's Day hat.  I cut everything out and had it ready to put together.  I gathered up the toothpicks, hot glue, glue stick, scrap cardstock, pipe cleaners, little arrow for the sign, and gold glitter paper.  So this morning, I only needed to grab a piece of cardboard for the base while Paisley got the gold necklace we had gotten in the Target dollar spot.

  • I hot glued the hat together, leaving the top free except the one part it is connected on the pattern.  Then I glued the base and the cylinder together, and the four leaf clover to it.  
  • While I was completing the hat, Paisley glued the cardstock onto the cardboard, cut out a gold path, and glued that on.  Steven was out getting milk, and arrived home just then, so Paisley went sent to eat.  I asked her questions about her land of enchantment for the leprechaun while she ate, so she would be included (luckily parents were encouraged to help).  
  • The sign is made from a trimmed toothpick that's hot glued to the cutest plastic arrow made of clear plastic and gold glitter that we got from Art School Dropout (unfortunately, my camera was on the wrong settings and it's impossible to make of the details, but it's like this.)  I honestly just jammed a pen into the cardstock and cardboard so I would have somewhere to stick the toothpick after I put hot glue on it.  
  • I trimmed more toothpicks, and glued them together to make a ladder.  I repeated the pen jamming for the ends of the latter.  
  • I had to use a big pair of scissors to make a hole for the treasure holder on the other side of the hat.  I put the pipe cleaner in and bent a little less than a half inch of the cleaner on the underside of the cardboard to act as an anchor and hopefully keep the treasure up.  Hot glued that, flipped the cardboard right side up, and bent it into a hook shape.  
  • I trimmed off a piece of the gold necklace and hung it from the hook.
  • With literally 1 minute before they were ready for school and speech therapy, I dashed upstairs to my craft room, and took photographic evidence in case the leprechaun has too much fun and destroys it.
  • Paisley wrote her name on it and they were sent off to school.  Steven said that all the teachers really liked it, so that's good.  Paisley said it's the best one ever.

So her trap or playground or curiosity location or whatever it is at this point – I'm all sorts of confused – is safely at school.  I am trying to complete as much homework as I can by tonight, while watching laundry, packing, and cleaning our house.  Just so you're aware, the mini hat book is by a wonderful crafty lady named Ellen Deakin of HappyThought.  Her book is available for free through Thursday at 11:59pm PST in the Amazon Kindle store.  If you don't have a Kindle (I don't), you can download a Kindle app (or whatever it's called on PC) and then use the book through there.  There are 8 different hats and they're OMG-Adorable.  The gold glitter paper is from Paper Source.

*an oobliette is a dungeon with an opening only at the top.  It's used in Labyrinth, as well as many, many other places.

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Today, I am 26.

It's been almost 6 months since I last blogged, and the 4 months proceeding that weren't that great either.  Do you know what?  I don't care much.  There are a bunch of reasons for my absence, but it mainly comes down to one thing: I was prescribed a medication that put me in a bad place, and my doctor and I have been trying different options to make me feel better ever since.  Some other life changing events have happened – some good, some bad – but I'm not sure if I'll ever share.  Even to the limited amount of people who still bother to actually read my blog.

My 42 Before 26 list is kind of a bust... I have about 8 goals or so that I completed that I never blogged (obviously), but I just wasn't in a place to be worrying about that stuff.  I may make a new one, as I thought it was fun while I was able to last.  In fact, something that I never thought to put on my list (due to being too scared), was apply for college.  I did apply and was accepted at a few big ones, but I chose a smaller one because they offered the major that I really wanted.  Really, all I've been doing is snuggling a bunch with Riley, Paisley, and Pepper.  (And Steven, of course.)  There's also been a lot of book reading as well.

Excuses, excuses...kind of like one excuse, but whatever.

Today, I am 26.  Today, I'll be seeing a movie, opening presents, and eating cake – all with my family.  I don't know if I'll ever feel completely better, but I'm trying.  That's kind of like a present to my family and myself, isn't is?

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I think a lot of people have been having some weird weather changes the last couple of weeks.  Some nights we've been turning our heat on and Pepper has been snuggling under our blankets in the morning.  I've had to send Paisley to change into pants a few different days and other days she has to change out of a long sleeve shirt into a short sleeve shirt and shorts.  This particular morning, I had an appointment to be to (read: waxing.  Hellooooo smooth legs and not having to do anything for 5 weeks!), and I needed to pick up a prescription, and stop by costco.  Since it was chilly and sprinkling, I opted for a nice big sweater and a lightweight shirt, a velvet bralette to keep me cozy, lovely black pants, and some booties that I've had for ages and ages but never really known what to wear them with.  I felt like they were too cowboy.  Which is kind of silly considering I was born and raised in Arizona.  But at the same time, this shirt reminded me of a very very pretty Native American girl I was friends with in junior high.  The rings were my grandma's and I'm so happy she had tiny fingers too so that I can wear her old jewelry.  Perhaps I was feeling a bit homesick for warm Arizona days and was channeling that through my clothes somehow...
side eye
Riley decided he wanted to be in the pictures and it made me wonder slightly if he, and Paisley, will remember me taking outfit photos for my blog.  Or if they'll someday, look back on them and wonder where they were and how funny I look.  It made me happy to see him smiling in front of a camera because last year, he screamed bloody murder if he thought you were taking his picture.
The day after these pictures were taken, we had an intense heat wave for the next three days and I thought I was going to melt.  Sweaters and boots seemed like a joke and then I found myself shivering and sending Steven downstairs to turn on the heat at 3 in the morning the following night.  So now I'm back to wearing shoes with socks and wanting a hoodie when I take Pepper out.  Who knows if it will last though.
Outfit Details:
Shirt:  Zara (sale)
Pants:  Ted Baker (sale)
Sweater:  Free People (from a local shop here though, I couldn't even find it online)
Bralette:  Free People Intimates (Nordstrom Rack sale, it was like $7!)
Shoes:  Cole Haan (Nordstrom Rack)
Socks (not shown):  Happy Socks
Necklace:  Red Velvet
Rings:  Vintage
Bag:  Marc by Marc Jacobs
Nail polish:  "hip-anaema" by essie

(Oh, and Riley's outfit details)
Shirt:  Ben Sherman (Off Saks)
Pants:  BabyGap (hand-me-down from Paisley)
Socks:  Angry Birds  (gift)
Shoes:  Converse (Nordstrom Rack)

PS- I am slowly working my way through the kind emails and comments that everyone send me last week.  (Yikes, has it been that long?!)  So hopefully, I'll be in touch with everyone soon.
washed out

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#3 - Read at Least 13 Books

42 before 26 title
#3 title
I have always loved reading.  Somewhere along the way, I would just forget to read for a while.  Then, when I'd finally get around to picking up a book from one of our shelves again, I'd fall in love with reading all over again and I'd end up binging on as many books as I could.  When I was sitting around coming up with things I wanted to put on this goal list, I had just bought a book that I was planning on reading, so I thought it would be worth it to make a point to read at least one book a month in the next year, plus an extra sometime along the way.  Well, I read the first book and loved it.  Then I started 2 or 3 more all at the same time.  I usually just stick to one book at a time, but I had heard of other people doing it this way, and I ended up really liking it.  It made reading very flexible since I could choose how serious, or not, the book was.

It's been 6 months and I've already finished my original goal of 13 books read.  (The picture shows 12 because I either borrowed one book from the library, or I misplaced it from my own.)  For this post, I introduce the book, with a link to buy it if you'd like, and give a small synopsis.  Below that, I rate the book, 1 to 5 stars, and give my opinion on the book.  Some may had some small spoilers, but I tried my hardest to not give anything important away.  But just a head's up in case you really care about that stuff.

My books so far include (not in the order I read them, just the order I stacked them for my photo):

Jay's Journal by Anonymous, edited by Beatrice Sparks  -  It's very similar to Go Ask Alice, but this journal follows a teenager named Jay who starts out caring about school and his two best friends.  But then he starts experimenting with drugs and witchcraft.  He becomes fascinated with the things he is capable doing and continues to practice with the occult until he thinks there's no way out.

★★★☆☆ I felt like the writing, and even the plot, was too similar to Go Ask Alice...I know it probably wouldn't bug other people, especially since Go Ask Alice is one of my favorites, but it bothered me.  It made it seem less real.  Anyway, I thought the whole "LDS/Mormon" aspect of the book was interesting even if they didn't mention it often.  And I wish some parts would've been more specific, as some of the situations were really generic.  The ending isn't a surprise if you read the back cover, but the last bit of the book was really good at drawing me in.
Lemony Snicket's A Series of Unfortunate Events, books 1-5
(I had a while were I wasn't going to count these individually since they're in the youth section...not even young adult.  But for little kids.  HA!  But since I adore the movie with Jim Carrey, I had been wanting to read them for quite some time.  I had bought as many of the books as I could when Border's was closing, and they were ones that were nice to read when I didn't want to read something "heavier."  They're also suuuper hilarious, a word here which means I was laughing enough that Riley would mimic me with a giggle every few pages.)  Anyway, the books follow the three Baudelaire children, Violet, Clause, and Sunny, during their life after finding out that their parents are home have perished in a terrible fire.  They are sent to live with different relatives that they've never even met by a banker named Mr. Poe.  The encounter Count Olaf in the first book who just wants the Baudelaire fortune, and he continues to follow them throughout the other books.

#1:  The Bad Beginning
#2:  The Reptile Room
#3:  The Wide Window
#4:  The Miserable Mill
#5:  The Austere Academy
★★★★★ (for all.  #4 was my least favorite though.)  I don't know if I'd really recommend these to adults, per se.  You can tell they're meant for young kids, which is perfectly fine.  (I also plan on reading most of Roald Dahl's books, which are meant for children, and I still read Harry Potter so I don't have a problem with children's books.  But I can see how an adult could have a problem with it.)  I like that Lemony Snicket teaches new words in contexts that can help children learn new words.  They're really fun books because it feels like the narrator is telling stories to a group of children.  The movie follows the first 2 really well, and changed the story of the 3rd book a little bit.  And now I just want to go watch the movie...family movie night anyone?!  I'll order pizza.
The Dexter Books by Jeff Lindsay
I really love series of books.  And I loooove watching Dexter on Showtime.  (I'm really bummed this is the last season and there's only a couple episodes left.)  The books are completely different from the way the show is.

Darkly Dreaming Dexter  -  For those of you not aware, Dexter is a serial killer who has a conscience only kills "bad guys" while he puts on his "I'm a normal guy" persona for everyone around him.  He works as a blood spatter analyst for the Miami Metro Police.  The books are funny despite talking about murders and I legit laughed out loud more than a couple times.  So in this book, a bunch of brutal murders start showing up that bear a striking resemblance to the way he kills his victims.  He starts out being flattered and curious about the other killer but then it changes to fear of the other killer and himself.

★★★★★  I really really enjoyed this book.  I love Dexter's character and he makes me smile, which is kind of ironic considering what he is, but he's lovable in his own way.  I felt like it was a page turner and since it was different from the tv show (even though it pretty much started out the same) it made it more fun because I didn't know what was going to happen.  The night before I finished it, I was going cross eyed and was considering pushing through to finish the last 50 or 60 pages.  But I saved them for the next morning and I'm happy I was awake.  It's intense!

Dearly Devoted Dexter  -  Dexter has had to slip into his "normal guy" disguise and has been spending time at his girlfriend's house.  A psychopath starts leaving bodies that even make Dexter lost for words.  Deborah, his sister, ends up getting pulled into harm's way so Dexter has to help her figure out where the psychopath is before the killer finds him.

★★★★☆  I didn't like this one as much.  I think it was the way the killer was that made me not as fond of the book as I wanted to be.  It kind of made my stomach knot up a few times.  But it got very exciting at a few points and I may or may not have gotten Riley lunch a half hour late when I was at those points.  I also did the "read till I'm cross eyed" thing with this book too.  So while it was a little repulsive at certain parts, it was definitely worth reading.  (I'm actually reading the third Dexter book now.)
The Bell Jar by Sylvia Plath  -  Ester is a college student in the 1950s who goes to New York City to intern as a junior editor at a fashion magazine for a summer.  Once she returns home, she starts to descend into insanity and she ends up going to several psychiatric wards to try to recover as well as receive some shock therapy.

★★★★★  This book was so...palpable.  Her descriptions of Ester's mental illness and breakdown were incredibly written and completely real.  It's one of my favorite books I've ever read and I wish Sylvia Plath would have finished the follow up book to this one before she committed suicide.  I'll definitely be getting her poetry books, but this novel was so magnificent.  I just sigh every time I think about it.
The Night Gwen Stacy Died by Sarah Bruni  -  Sheila Gower is a 17 year old girl who lives in a small college town.  When a handsome young man, who calls himself Peter Parker (Spiderman), convinces her to run away with him to Chicago because he has these psychic visions.  He starts calling her Gwen Stacy, after Spiderman's first love, and they end up saving each other while they fall in love and Peter tries to figure out his latest psychic vision.

★★★☆☆  I thought it was a cute story, and I definitely liked the Spiderman references.  I thought the ending lacked something and was disappointed in it. The chapters switch between Peter and Gwen narrating, which I've also always kind of been on the wall about.  Sometimes it's perfect, and sometimes not.  I couldn't really make up my mind about this one though.  Otherwise it was a fun read for the summer.
The Cuckoo's Calling by Robert Galbraith (JK Rowling's pseudonym)  -  Detective Cormoran Strike is asked to investigate the death of a super model in London for his only client, while creditors are calling.  He's just broken up with his long time girlfriend and is living in his office.  He's accidentally sent a temp secretary named Robin, who ends up being a huge asset to him in his case.

★★★★★  I enjoyed this book so much!  JK Rowling is one of my favorite writers, although I couldn't ever get into The Casual Vacancy.  This book also switched between Strike's character narrating and Robin's character.  It was done wonderfully.  I definitely couldn't predict the outcome of it and was sad when it ended.  I read that JK Rowling is working on a follow up book and I'm buying it as soon as it comes out.  Definitely worth reading.
The Painted Girls by Cathy Marie Buchanan   -  This is a historical fiction novel where three sisters in 1878 Paris find their lives disintegrating after their father suddenly dies.  Their mother works as a laundress but all of her money goes to buy absinthe.  Two of the sisters, Marie and Charlotte, join the ballet at the Paris opera in hopes of making money as ballerinas.  The oldest sister, Antoinette, looks for work elsewhere.  She meets a boy whom she falls in love with, while working on a stage adaptation of Emile Zola's L'Assommoire, and continues with other small jobs after that while seeing him. The middle sister, Marie, meets the famous painter Edgar Degas and models for him for extra money.  He ends up painting her and creating a sculpture based on her.  Marie also meets a rich patron of the ballet and he offers to help her in her progression in the ballet so she is able to make more money for her family.  Both of the sisters must choose which paths they need to take in order to be happy in their lives.

★★★★★  I know I've been giving a lot of five stars to these books, and maybe I'm just in love with reading so I love everything, but this book was wonderful.  I haven't read much historical fiction, but I really want to read more after this one.  This book switches between the two older sisters, Antoinette and Marie, as well.  I wanted to read it all day and all night.  My sister is an artist, so I remember her showing me paintings from Degas from the time I was finishing up elementary school and entering junior high.  I'm pretty sure she has some prints of his work in her house.  So I loved it from that aspect.  I liked Marie's story (ballerina who knew Degas) better, but her sister's story was just as compelling in it's own way and it was more of a "oh my gosh! What's going to happen next?!" type story, especially near the end.
Dead Ever After by Charlaine Harris  -  This is the final book in the Sookie Stackhouse series.  Sookie turns down a request from Arlene, a former barmaid at Merlotte's, when she asks for her job back after she gets out of jail for attacking Sookie.  (I think it's completely understandable.)  The next day, Arlene ends up dead in the trash behind Merlotte's, with Sookie's scarf tied around her.  Sookie gets arrested and is also upset that her relationship with her vampire husband, Eric Northman, is becoming very distant.  When she finds out the reason why, she becomes even more upset.  Old friends come to visit and help her figure out who actually murdered Arlene.

★★☆☆☆  These books are what HBO's True Blood series is based on.  Only the books are kind of like night and day.  But it makes them fun, like the Dexter books.  I like the books a little bit better than the last few seasons of TB, but not this one.  It was my least favorite book ever from the entire Sookie Stackhouse books.  It seemed rushed, and I hated how she tried to tie things up with every open end from the past books.  It seemed forced.  Eh...  That's it.

So those are the books I've read so far.  I have another stack waiting to be read on my side table and I'm so excited about them!  I'll be sharing them in smaller groups though since this post has gotten ridiculously long...like one hundred words less than yesterday's post.  (If you'd like to read about the other goals I've completed, you can find them collected here...most posts aren't as long as this one.)

I can't write this post without taking the time to thank everyone who read my post yesterday and commented here, on instagram, texted, or emailed me.  I cried multiple times and had a bunch of fuzzy feelings.  I felt loved and so happy that I was able to push "publish" on it.  Thank you so much everyone.  Thank you.

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a story about suicide and world suicide prevention day

ghost shoes
Suicide is a scary subject.  Death is a scary subject, but killing oneself just adds an extra amount of terror.  I don't know, maybe I'm alone in this view, but I think so.  And I've been dealing with suicidal thoughts on and off for 15 years.

Let me tell you a story...  When I was in 4th grade (10 years old), I was part of a gifted program in school.  I loved being one of the "smart kids."  We went to a special classroom one day a week to learn about algebra and read books meant for kids in high school.  We even studied cameras, made a pinhole camera, and dissected cow and sheep eyes.  And that was just the 4th grade year.  I loved it.  When we went back to our regular classrooms at the end of the day, our teachers would give us our worksheets and assignments from that day for us to complete and return.

For some reason my best friend, Kim, started a rumor about me being a lesbian that same year.  I didn't even know what a lesbian was.  And I didn't even know what the rumor was for months and months.  I just knew that no one wanted to play with me during recess or work with me on school projects.  I did have one friend who was also in the gifted program with me.  But I was still sad about losing my best friend that I'd had since Kindergarten.  I felt so alone.  We had to put our dog to sleep that year too and it hit me hard.  I felt so sad for so long.  I don't remember much about that year, except I stopped reading the advanced books, and I had to keep getting permission from my regular teacher to turn in my make up work later than it was due.  I didn't like going to the other classroom because I knew it'd be more work and I didn't want to do anything.
Most days I'd sit under a big tree by myself during recess and work on my make up work from regular classes.  I am pretty sure it was a Thursday (not like it is that important, but it sticks out in my mind as being a Thursday), I was sitting under the big tree and I was playing with the dirt around me and I thought to myself, "I wish I was dead."

The thought surprised me, but I knew I wanted it to come true.  I don't specifically remember thinking it again that school year, but I'm sure I did.  I hated everything about myself then.  I knew there must be something wrong with me for all of my friends to abandon me that way.  I felt like I was slipping behind in everything.

Once I was in seventh grade, I started thinking about suicide more and more.  Specific ways to "off" myself, which was new for me.  It had just been a want for so long and then it started to form into a sort of dark monster that lived in my head.  I could never settle on a way which was acceptable.  Each year got progressively worse.  I was always too afraid to talk to anyone because I thought everyone would judge me and I was worried they'd see it as an imperfection.  I mean *normal* people didn't day dream about suicide.  *Normal* people were healthy, had a bunch of friends, got straight As, and were so happy.  All. The. Time.  They didn't have this dark monster dancing in their heads telling them they'd be better off dead.
cherry light
My mom found me a therapist sometime when I was 15.  I didn't start seeing him because of my suicidal thoughts I don't think....I could be wrong...I do know there were other issues I needed to deal with though, so I'm pretty sure that's why I started seeing him.  I loved him.  I saw him every other week and those were the best days out of the month.  It was so wonderful to talk to someone who didn't judge and wanted to help.  I shared so much with him, but I never let my monster show all the way.  Just bits and pieces.  But he helped me find ways to cope when I was upset and sad.

My sophomore year of high school, I was in my most serious relationship (besides Steven).  I started talking to him about wanting to kill myself.  He said those conversations were worrisome, at best, and terrifying, at worst.  But he was willing to talk to me about it whenever I wanted to.  It was so wonderful to have someone else to talk to.  I didn't tell my new best friend because I was scared of what she would think about me and how scary the monster could be when it showed itself.  But having two people was so much better than not having anyone, like it'd been for so long.  And my boyfriend still loved me, and my therapist still cared about me.

I went to a youth training group for "troubled teens" the beginning of 2006 and met some wonderful kids.  I told a small group of them that I had been having suicidal thoughts for almost 8 years.  I was scared.  Some of them didn't talk to me after that.  Like being suicidal is contagious or something.  It was insulting and it hurt my feelings.  But I also met the most amazing girl who had been having suicidal thoughts too.  I gave her my phone number and she called my a lot to cry to me and I'd try to make her feel better just by talking since she lived in a different state.  She is now one of my best friends.  I liked being able to help someone through a hard time for both of us.
Steven was aware of me being suicidal occasionally from the first phone call we had.  It took me until November 2011 for me to finally be able to admit that I needed help.  The monster looms bigger and darker when the seasons change to fall and winter.  Our house at that time got dark sooo early and Riley was doing nothing but screaming all day long because he was getting 8 teeth at once.  I started looking at psychiatric hospitals in the area.  I was desperate but there was no way Steven could take off work for me to check into one.  So, with Steven's encouragement, I started seeing a therapist again. We talked about suicide.  My monster was still there.  But he was a little bit smaller. About half a year later, with Steven and my therapist urging me to, I finally made an appointment with a psychiatrist to get medication.  Unfortunately, she was a terrible fit for me and she made me feel even worse about myself.  A couple months later, I made an appointment to see a different psychiatrist.  He's now my favorite doctor ever, and probably one of my favorite people.  That's probably strange to say, but I think it's important.  We're still working on getting medications right after a year and a few months.  So I see him a lot.  Haha!  But the suicidal thoughts came around less often.  It was strange not having a looming beast all of the time.
Last September, I was so stressed about so many things and Paisley had just started school for the first time.  There were so many things...so many.  And I just...broke.  I called Steven and bawled my eyes out and while I was on the phone with him I knew, absolutely, that I wanted to die.  I hung up on him and turned off my phone.  I didn't want any distractions, and I knew he'd be calling me.  Paisley was at school, so it was just Riley and me.  I went and laid down in my bed and tried to figure out a way to kill myself.  I had never figured out "the right way" in my 14 years of dancing with my suicidal dreams.  I was determined to figure it out.  But in walked Riley and climbed in my bed.  He wasn't talking at all, but he gestured that he wanted to watch a tv show in my room.  I turned something on and kept bawling and bawling.  I knew I couldn't kill myself without someone to talk care of Riley.  I wished I had someone who could come take him.

A few minutes later, someone was pounding on our front door.  I'm terrified of people just stopping by, so I wasn't planning on going to the door.  I just wanted to hide and kill myself.  But the pounding didn't stop.  It just kept getting louder.  I wanted it to stop.  I finally gave up, and opened the door.  I literally had snot running down my face and there was a cop.  I just said "oh."  I was too tired and sad to resist his attempt to come in our house, so I just let him.  He was talking to me and asking me why I was feeling upset.  I slumped down onto the floor because I was too tired to stand while he was talking to me.  He told me my husband was worried I was going to do something so he had called them.  He asked me if I had plans to kill myself and I told him, "no...it's all too messy...and our house is already messy enough."  His partner came in and Riley ran to his room to get a soccer ball to play with.  They told me our house was nice and I told them all of our neighbors hated us.  Not long after that, paramedics came and took me to the hospital in an ambulance.

One police officer stayed with Riley until Steven got home, and the first one that had been talking to me, followed the ambulance to the hospital.  He wrote up a report to give the hospital's psychiatrist.  There were two nurses who helped get me changed into a hospital gown.  I was too sad and moving too slow so I couldn't even take off my pants.  When the nurse asked why I was there, the police officer had to answer for me, and the nurse mocked me.  It just made everything worse.  There was this terrible feeling that everyone was going to not understand.

Steven showed up with Riley some time after that.  He stayed until it was time to get lunch and Paisley from school.  By the time he got back to the hospital, I had been moved from the ER to their psychiatric unit until I could have an evaluation by their psychiatrist to see if I needed to be admitted.  I laid around in beds for hours and hours that day.  It was so exhausting.  Everything made me so tired, even turning over in the bed or adjusting my pillow.  When the psychiatrist came in that evening, she read the police offer's report in the most mocking voice I've ever heard.  She thought I was a joke.  But after her little visit with me, she had me call Steven, change into my regular clothes, and I went home.
wdw haunted mansion
For the next week, I did nothing but lay in bed.  I was engulfed in suicidal thoughts...my monster never left me, never let any light in.  I hardly ate, I lost a bunch of weight, and practically became a skeleton.  (Which I found ironic, when I had the energy to think, that I looked like a skeleton when I wanted to be a skeleton.)  I only kissed and hugged Paisley and Riley when they came in before naps and bed times.  Most of the time I was too tired to even get up and pee.  Some days I'd start to feel better and then someone would call for me, hoping I was better.  I'd immediately sink back down as far as possible into the monster's shadow.  It was the worst week of my life as far as emotions and terrible thoughts go.

My psychiatrist changed my dosage on my medication the next week. And I started seeing my therapist more. I've been feeling mostly better since then.  Part of me wishes I could've gone to the mental hospital after that day in September.  I think it would've been nice to focus solely on my mental wellbeing.  Occasionally, I still have fleeting thoughts about understanding how someone would want to commit suicide, but I haven't been daydreaming about it.  Without Steven, my psychiatrist, and my therapist...well, I'd be a complete mess.  I don't know if I would ever go through with it.  I figure I won't since it's been 15 years that I've wanted to and have never even settled on a way.  It's so nice not having that horrible monster hanging around...
There are so many people who deal with suicidal thoughts, attempt suicide, and follow through with it.  Today is World Suicide Prevention day.  Obviously, I feel it's important to talk to someone about your thoughts or intentions.  I started out small, just one person at a time.  I was scared because of the stigma surrounding mental illness and suicide.  There are so many people who don't understand or think people act that way for attention, like the nurse at the ER.  Educating people helps.  Sharing personal stories can help.  I'm sure there are others waiting to find someone they trust enough to confide in.  If you know someone, even yourself, who's struggling please reach out for help.  Suicide is such a scary thing for most people.  So many turn their backs to it because they're worried about facing it, or ashamed because it's not "normal."  But there's help there who are waiting for it.  Please don't be afraid.  As someone who had these dark thoughts for 14 years, trust me when I say that there's help even if it feels like you're beyond help and your dark monster is hanging on too strong.  It is so much better not feeling that way.
Thank you to anyone who stuck around and read this entire post.  I know it was very long and kind of all over the place.  It's hard to properly convey things without sitting down and going over it again and again and I knew if I didn't just write it all up, then I never would.  I don't know if I'll lose readers because of it, but I don't really care anymore.  I'm sick of being scared to talk about this.  It's part of my life and my life isn't rainbows and cupcakes. No one's life is.  But I hope this blog helps.  Even if it's just one person.  It'd make this worth it.

(Oh, and in case you were wondering about the photos... 1.  Converse photo was from the 4th of July, 2011 // 2.  Sunset from July, 2013 // 3.  Lamp and cherry blossom trees, Washington DC 2013 // 4.  Forest from our "3 Bears' House", sometime 2011 // 5.  Sunset, taken near our "Castle House" in January 2012 // 6.  The Haunted Mansion at Walt Disney World in Florida.  This was during Mickey's Not So Scary Halloween party // 7.  Converse and dandelions, April 2013 // 8.  Macarons - Directly across the street from my psychiatrist's office is the best French patisserie.  We go every time I have an appointment.  Paisley and Riley get cupcakes and Steven and I get macarons.  I now associated them with being dedicated with getting better.)

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