March 26, 2015

Surviving College

How to survive college in ten easy steps... or fighting depression 101. Just kidding, I'm not going to give you a list of ways to fight depression in college. It might be nice if I had such a list, but I'm sure they exist out there in the world wide web. After all, depression seems to be a sickeningly normal thing for college students, especially here up North where the sun disappears for half the year.

I don't want to say that I'm depressed, I've never been to a counselor or doctor or anything, and I can usually still function and have never been to the point where I absolutely needed help. But there's definitely something that makes college hard. Some weight on my chest that makes me choke. Something holding my throat to try and keep me from getting out of bed in the mornings.

I don't want to complain, though, or make you feel sorry for me, or anything. I cried at least once a day every day the week after spring break, and it was so hard. But it's been so much better these last few days, and for me writing has always been a way to cope. I know I'm doing better because I can write about this. Last week there's no way I would have had the energy to write a blog post.

So this blog is all about the girl behind the pages, but even while I hide behind the pages sometimes I feel like I cannot exist until I've written myself into the pages in some way. This blog is me getting better. Me admitting that this first year of college has not been the best year of my life.

But this is also me hoping. Hoping that I'll keep getting better. That I'll find joy in the mornings, that I'll take pride in my work, that I'll seek out my friends. This is me taking off the mask and praying that what's underneath will still be shaped into a smile.

It's also a confession that novels have suffered because of this darkness, but a finger-crossing that maybe some of the poems I've spat out have some potential.

In class we talk a lot about how grief, shadows, and pain can lead to great writing. So here's to new writing and the beginning of spring, which I hope to be a sort of turning point. Just four weeks of school left, and I know that words will carry me through.

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