may 17, 2017

Hello.

So a year ago, I wrote a very difficult blog post.

Today, I can say a year and three days ago, my father attempted suicide. After, he was in a psych ward for three weeks. I was in Chicago when it happened.

It rocked my world in ways I couldn’t imagine. I was afraid to leave my father home alone. I couldn’t touch the kitchen knife he used to cut his wrists. I didn’t know how to talk about it, or what the right way to talk about it was. I still don’t, since my dad never brings it up, and I don’t know if I should ever broach the subject with him.

Things are better. They’re not like they were last year, but they’re not perfectly healthy and okay, either.

To be honest, they were never perfectly healthy or okay.

I have a little story about how books helped.

I read WHEN WE COLLIDED by Emery Lord shortly after everything happened. It was a shock to find a book that somehow represented everything I was feeling at that exact point in time. There were scenes in a mental hospital–a normal mental hospital without evil doctors and gothic monsters around every corner. There was a boy struggling to be a caregiver to his depressed mother. There was a girl struggling with her medication and a mother trying to do the best she could. It made me feel seen. It made me feel like my mom and I weren’t alone. It was cathartic.

Yesterday, I read Emery Lord’s new book THE NAMES THEY GAVE US. In it, Lucy’s parents keep the fact that her mom’s breast cancer returned from her, partly because it’s her prom night and they want her to have a good time. My mom kept my dad’s attempted suicide from me for several days while I was out of town because she wanted me to have a good trip. I understand why she did it, just like Lucy understands why her parents kept it from her. But it still fucking hurts. And somehow, once again Emery Lord made me feel understood.

Books are some special kind of magic.

My dad grew up in a tiny mountain town in Italy, where mental illness wasn’t spoken of. It’s left his mark on him, how he copes, and how he communicates. He’s 68, so there’s not much we can do about it at this point. But the stigma matters because it has shaped people, entire generations. And the work we’re doing now, the work to undo the stigma is so, so important.

I process depictions of suicide or self-harm in books/movies/TV different now. It hits a different nerve. It came up in a lecture this past semester, in History of US Sexuality, where I thought I was safe. I don’t remember what was said, but I just remember freezing up, my brain replaying everything that had happened to my family. I felt sick and unsteady, and I just sat there for a few moments breathing deeply.

My dad’s been sober since, so that’s a good thing that’s happened.

This blog post doesn’t feel very cohesive, and some of that is because my thoughts are very scattered and disorganized on this topic. On this memory. On this event that happened in my life, in my dad’s life, in my mom’s life. I can’t really believe a year has gone by. When I think about it, it’s like it just happened yesterday. But it also feels like it was decades ago.

I guess a year later I can say, don’t give up. The road is scary and daunting. Everything feels insurmountable when it happens. Those first days he was home from the mental hospital were some of the most anxious, petrified out of my mind, exhausting days of my life. But it can be done.

If you or a loved one are struggling with suicidal thoughts, please get help: National Suicide Prevention Lifeline 1800-273-8255. The world needs you, your voice, your light. You are light, even if it feels like you aren’t.

Advertisements

june 10, 2016

Hello!

What I’m Reading 
In a turn of events, I just read a screenplay! Book blogger Celeste sent me the script IN THE DEEP aka THE SHALLOWS starring Blake Lively and a mean shark.

finding nemo bruce shark laughing

It was really interesting. I’ve never actually read an entire script before. I didn’t know they could have epigraphs! There were also some bits of character motivation on the page that I loved. The writing was snappy and flowed easily. It was a compulsive read.

I was interested in this film after Blake gave an interview with EW. She talked about how the movie isn’t ‘Bikini vs Shark’ and I liked how the shot of her standing on the buoy in a bathing suit like a badass didn’t sexualize her. There was no side boob. She wasn’t striking a pose. She looked locked in battle.

But she claims The Shallows is deeper than you think. Says the actress, “It’s really a story of us all trying to survive on this planet. It sounds lofty, but when you boil it down, that’s what it is. What I really liked about this is that it wasn’t just Bikini vs. Monster.” She pauses. “But you still get a little bikini and you still get a little monster!” [x]

The thing about me, though, is I’m a major baby. One thing I can’t do is super bloody gory body parts. So I was worried as epic this movie looked about one woman’s survival, I wouldn’t be able to stomach it. After reading the script, there were several moments that had me feeling sick, so I might just wait until I can watch it at home, cover my eyes, and squirm alone during some moments.

tumblr_n7nvxrKDUv1tvoh8uo7_250tumblr_n7nvxrKDUv1tvoh8uo5_250 <– basically me.

BUT all the trailers so far have been cut so well, the script is good, and I recommend it!

Aaaaaaannnndd, back to books!

I’m late to the party. THE WALLS AROUND US by Nova Ren Suma. Holy. Shit. Balls.

I loved the opening pages, but then had a hard time for like the first 70 pages. I hung in there cause Goodreads was full of praise for this book + I did think the writing was gorgeous, and then I don’t know when it happened, but suddenly it had me and I was reading frantically. So, I mean, if you’re one of the few people that haven’t read this yet, DO IT.

the walls around us.jpg

What I’m Doing
This week has been pretty chill. I’m the world’s most boring person again.

Well, on Monday I went with my dad to his first therapy session. Mom and I sat in the waiting room and hoped it was going well. Then together we grabbed lunch at a new Turkish place, had amazing hummus (like omg the best hummus EVER), bought some shoes, and just had a really good time as a family. That hasn’t happened in a long time, all three of us hanging out and getting along.

 

Tuesday, Jess and I went shopping since she needed help getting an outfit for a hot date 😉

She wasn’t the only one who got a new outfit. I found something even cooler than date clothes…

We ordered too much food afterwards: pizza AND sandwiches. But the thing is, it was a great day, cause this particular pizza place doesn’t make the same slices every day. And my ultimate fave is one with ricotta and broccoli. And, you can imagine, they don’t make that one as often. But on this wonderful, fateful Tuesday, BEHOLD:

pizza.jpg

I was so happy. 🙂

Later that day, went back with my dad to the therapist’s office to meet with the psychiatrist.

Wednesday it stormed.

Thursday I had been planning to go to an allergy doctor, but then wasn’t feeling well + the weather. My dad went to group therapy in the morning, and in the afternoon I accompanied him to see his regular doctor. It’s been a busy doctor week.

Friday is now. Shit. I just realized my dad came home a week ago. Wow. He’s doing better. Last Sunday was a really hard day, Monday was a little easier, and then Tuesday after seeing his psychiatrist he’s improved more every day.

This evening I’m going to see Finding Neverland on Broadway with my mom and friends. This wasn’t particularly a show I wanted to see, but I love Pan, and Friend invited me since tickets were cheap. I’ll probably have pictures in the next blog. The next blog will no doubt be cooler cause I have LOTS of plans coming up in the next few days. Broadway, book events, concert, more book events. I’m excited!

What I’m Thinking About
-Like everyone, the Stanford Rapist. But I can’t add anything to the conversation than what is already being said by lots of smart, eloquent people.

-The Tony Awards are SUNDAY! I can’t wait to see all the performances (and watch Hamilton win everything lol).

– I just created a tag on tumblr called ‘lady friendships’ and I’m happily filling with my favorite female besties of film and TV. It’s just sad more aren’t popping into my head right away.

If you’re interested, take a look here: http://thebluecray0n.tumblr.com/tagged/lady-friendships.

I asked Twitter for some suggestions too.

 What I’m Writing
I’ve made lots of progress in #fantasyWIP. Currently at 54k! I’m so close to the end. It was hard at first getting back into the groove of it, but I’m motivated to finish and loving my characters and all my twists.

^^ This was the moment I finally wrote something I was proud of since getting back into drafting seriously. It was enough to inspire me to keep going and push through all the resistance. You gotta hold onto those moments and that feeling cause writing is damn hard.

IT WAS SUCH A RELIEF TO HIT 50K. It felt like winning NaNoWriMo hahahaha.

Such a surreal and proud moment to finally be at this point of the story. It was a scene I’d been dying to write, a pivotal moment for two characters, that really sets up the rest of the conflict and where everyone goes from here. These are always the big juicy moments I love reading about, and exciting in terms of writing. You need to lead to it carefully, and then let everything explode.

And, ya know, what’s better than some musical inspiration?

What I’m Watching
I did a rewatch of season 1 of Gossip Girl. In high school, it was a rite of passage to go see Gossip Girl film and I saw Blake Lively shoot a scene! Ha, funny how this post is bookended with Blake Lively 🙂

Anyway, yeah, said scene! There were lots of paps around and they kept wandering in the shot and ruining it, so Blake got really annoyed at them. As she should since they were disrupting her work!

(Well, I got very distracted trying to find photos from that day, but couldn’t D:) (This is the best I could do.)

blake lively.jpg

Anyway, back to the point of this. Watching Gossip Girl now as an older, different person than I was back then was interesting. Firstly, the slut shaming of Serena in the first 2 episodes really pissed me off. I also used to think the take down of Georgiana was way more epic than it actually is.

Other than that though, I really loved it. I got all kinds of sexual jokes this time around hahaha. Also, Blair and Dan have some great season 1 moments. As someone who loved Dair, this was exciting to see.

Nah, but, I still think season 1 is a prime example of great TV. The Thanksgiving episode is one of the best of all time.

That’s all from me for now. Be kind to each other,
Mic ❤

may 23, 2016

Hi everyone!

What I’m Reading
A lot! So let’s get right to it.

  • The Unexpected Everything by Morgan Matson.

This precious adorable book! I can’t even tell you how much I loved it. DOGS! All the dogs. All the cute animals. I also loved the friendship and family themes of the story, it’s basically the perfect blend of what I want to see and write in YA contemporary. Plus, an adorable romance. I also adore the design of this book (front and back cover). It’s so, so pretty, and I know I’m gonna crack soon and buy my own copy.

the unexpected everything.jpg

  • Blood for Blood by Ryan Graudin

I’m not okay. I’m not okay. I’m not okay. I’m not okay. I’m not okay. I’m not okay. I’m not okay. I’m not okay. I’m not okay. I’m not okay. I’m not okay. I’m not okay. I’m not okay. I’m not okay. I’m not okay. I’m not okay. I’m not okay. I’m not okay. I’m not okay. I’m not okay. I’m not okay. I’m not okay. I’m not okay. I’m not okay. I’m not okay. I’m not okay. I’m not okay. I’m not okay. I’m not okay. I’m not okay. I’m not okay. I’m not okay. I’m not okay. I’m not okay. I’m not okay. I’m not okay. I’m not okay. I’m not okay. I’m not okay. I’m not okay. I’m not okay. I’m not okay. I’m not okay. I’m not okay. I’m not okay. I’m not okay. I’m not okay. I’m not okay. I’m not okay. I’m not okay. I’m not okay. I’m not okay. I’m not okay. I’m not okay. I’m not okay. I’m not okay. I’m not okay. I’m not okay. I’m not okay. I’m not okay. I’m not okay. I’m not okay. I’m not okay. I’m not okay.

 

 

Silly me, I did not realize how accurate that very posed fangirling crying on the bed photo would become. It was 1 in the morning when I finished reading and I was legit ugly crying, but I had been ugly crying for the last 80 pages of the book.

I’m not okay. I’m not okay. I’m not okay. I’m not okay. I’m not okay. I’m not okay. I’m not okay. I’m not okay. I’m not okay. I’m not okay. I’m not okay. I’m not okay. I’m not okay. I’m not okay. I’m not okay. I’m not okay. I’m not okay. I’m not okay. I’m not okay. I’m not okay. I’m not okay. I’m not okay. I’m not okay. I’m not okay. I’m not okay. I’m not okay. I’m not okay. I’m not okay. I’m not okay. I’m not okay. I’m not okay. I’m not okay. I’m not okay. I’m not okay. I’m not okay. I’m not okay. I’m not okay. I’m not okay. I’m not okay. I’m not okay. I’m not okay. I’m not okay. I’m not okay. I’m not okay. I’m not okay. I’m not okay. I’m not okay. I’m not okay. I’m not okay. I’m not okay. I’m not okay. I’m not okay. I’m not okay. I’m not okay. I’m not okay. I’m not okay. I’m not okay. I’m not okay. I’m not okay. I’m not okay. I’m not okay. I’m not okay. I’m not okay. I’m not okay. I’M NOT OKAY.

  • A Shadow Bright and Burning by Jessica Cluess

This is my current read! I’m only on like chapter 3, and You are a rare species of cod is my favorite thing. So much so I’m randomly texting it to people.

Screenshot_2016-05-23-15-36-34.jpg

What I’m Doing
I went to B&N hoping they put Stacey Lee’s OUTRUN THE MOON out a couple days early. Ha, no luck.

I ended up getting sick (travel, stress, allergies, boo), so I’ve been in a fog all week. I just got on antibiotics yesterday, so hopefully that kicks this thing. Because of my sickness, I had to miss the brilliant and amazing Maggie Stiefvater at Books of Wonder over the weekend.

I’d been looking forward to Maggie’s signing since it was announced months ago. It was such a shame to miss it. I love, love, love The Raven Cycle beyond words.

But, I’m consoling myself with the memories of 2011, when she was at the Scholastic store (with Meg Cabot and Libba Bray) and I talked to her during a lull in her signing line for like 10 minutes.

252955_225987097428116_5650242_n.jpg

Oh, yeah. That actually happened. 

That was actually such a crazy event because my friend and I got to the store super early. When we reached there, we asked an employee where to go for the This Is Teen event, and they directed us upstairs to some sort of cocktail event, handed us goodie bags with ARCs (including Maggie’s FOREVER!!), and left us alone with publishing officials and bloggers. I remember we had no idea what was going on and were afraid at any moment someone would realize we weren’t bloggers, take our goodie bags away, and kick us out. We grabbed some finger foods, and sat on the floor in the corner, looking at the view of the city, marveling over how we ended up in this fancy room with all these people.

There came a point, as it got closer to the event and I wasn’t seeing more kids our age, I had a feeling we were in the wrong place. I coerced Friend into investigating with me. We left the room, went back the way we came, and ended up back in the Scholastic store’s main floor/store area. Sure enough, there were hordes of actual readers waiting for the event to start. We joined them, replaying everything in our heads and realized the mistake the person had made assuming we were there so early to attend the blogger/publishing mixer.

This is now one of my fondest memories! ❤ And I can’t believe I have a picture with Meg and Libba, but not Maggie. Shame on me!

 

Okay, enough of memory lane. I was sick and missed Maggie. Boooo. Hopefully I don’t have to wait another 5 years for my chance to see her again.

I feel like I’m in a transitional period right now. This last week has been spent feeling sick, and going to see my dad during visiting hours. I have this new experience now, and I’m trying to memorize every detail, notice and remember things. My dad has been a patient for 8 days now.

I have a new understanding of what a psych ward is. But then again, I have a very limited view, confined to a dining room for one and a half hours a day. But even this brief glimpse has stripped me of preconceived notions.

What I’m Thinking About
-I should see an allergy specialist. The last few years I’ve had horrible seasonal allergies that spiral into infections/colds, and it’s no bueno. Should look into allergy shots.

-I saw bits of The View this morning and they were talking about little girls in provocative outfits courtesy of Chris Brown being mad at his daughter’s dance costume. All the women on the show agreed with Chris, because they have husbands who are overprotective of their daughters. They were saying that they can’t see the world as a man does, so they need to respect what their husbands want. Whoopie was the only one that seemed to have a problem with what was being said, but she didn’t really join in.

It made me angry. How about we stop hyper-sexualizing little girls. How about we stop telling girls they can’t wear leggings, get their ears pierced, or pose with their hands on their hip because they are nothing but objects that distract men, and have no worth as a human being. They are things with a body that has no purpose but to make babies and distract men and boys.

feminist-rant

Stop looking at 2-year-old girls, little girls, teenage girls, young women, ladies as sexual objects. Why aren’t boys and men taught to look at girls and women in different ways, in respectful ways, in ways that value their dignity as people first?

You are a rare species of cod.

What I’m Writing
Classified.

What I’m Watching
Oh my gosh, Jurassic World has been on tv like 3 times in the last week.

In other news, I have watched Jurassic World 3 times in the last week.

I love the way it critiques captivity, plus how beautiful Chris Pratt is. I mean, I have some problems with this film, like how Bryce Dallas Howard’s character is conceived as the frigid business woman who needs to be told to RELAX by her boss, the way POC side characters are all killed off, and how Morgana from Merlin is needlessly and viciously killed off. But the heart wants what it wants. Adorable raptors, my badass baby t-rex of wonders, bickering OTP, adorable little boy with feels = my dreams.

It’s about to start again. I will be watching it again. No shame!

I’m also getting caught up on Orphan Black! I really like this season. I feel like it has finally recaptured that blend of Clone Family Humor and Actual Plot of season one. I also love all the exploration of Beth, since I have so many feels about her. All the little details too, when Sarah and Art are watching the footage and how they have their own feels over Paul and Beth. Tat and the Guy Who Plays Art have beautifully captured their grief.

The only drawback is that disgusting Cheek Maggot Thing. But I’ve mastered the art of looking away at this point.

One other thing, still waiting on the first promo of season 3 of The Royals. I need it.

That’s all from me for now. Be kind to each other,
Mic ❤

may 17, 2016

While I was at BookCon, my dad attempted suicide.

I went back and forth about whether to write a BookCon recap as its own post, but for me, these memories are intertwined forever now and I want to preserve them. I want to write something for me.

What I’m Feeling
I don’t know. I feel weird, like I’m not feeling anything. The house is quiet. I can’t look at the kitchen knives. My mom is nervous and scared. I think she’s holding onto a lot of guilt. I slept on my dad’s side of the bed last night.

And then I’ll think about BookCon, when I was blissfully ignorant of everything at home. I remember actually thinking to myself while roaming the show floor, “This is the happiest I’ve felt in a long time. When someone asks when the last time I was truly happy was, I’ll say today.”

It kills me to know my father was feeling the complete and total opposite of this at the exact same time.

Maybe I’m holding onto a lot of guilt too.

What I’m Reading
20160514_202219.jpg

I’m incredibly proud of my haul. Last year, I got a bunch of stuff, but not anything I was really dying to read (I actually didn’t even know there would be ARCs… I was such a newbie). This year, I was focused, planned out what I wanted and what the best way to get them was.

I thought my first book would be BLOOD FOR BLOOD since WOLF BY WOLF is, like, my favorite book ever maybe. I needed its sequel. I expected I’d be reading it on the plane home, probably cry a lot and scare my seat mates.

But then, towards the end of the day, I was sitting at the Downtown Stage when a friend got an alert that Penguin had tweeted out a chance to win A TORCH AGAINST THE NIGHT. My first instinct was not to run for it, followed by a flood of regret. I was so close to Penguin, I should have just gone and tried. I reminded myself it was coming out in two-ish months and I could wait.

Then, maybe an hour later I was across the show floor with my friends, sitting and resting while they decided which panel to go to. I was satisfied. Done. I’d achieved everything on my list and was happy to just go with the flow for the rest of the evening. That’s when my phone buzzed with another Penguin notification. I skimmed the image of books in the tote they were giving out, glimpsed Torch, and took off running.

Mine, mine, mine. I wanted it. Screw waiting two more months. Elias, Laia, Helene! I needed to know what would happen. I reached the Penguin booth, gasped out the password, but was met with “Awwws” and “You were SO CLOSE.” The winner was actually still there! I’d just been a few seconds too late.

I asked if there was another chance to win Torch. The Penguin staffers told me there would be, so I decided to hang around. It was 4, there were 2 hours left of BookCon, and again, I had what I wanted. It’s not like I’d have been missing something except a panel I wasn’t really interested in anyway.

I watched some other people mosey along to try to claim the tote bag of books, but they were too late. At some point, another girl showed up and sat right in front of me. I saw her refreshing the PenguinTeen page nonstop. I was like, “Oh my gosh. Welp. This is it. She’s blocking my way and she’ll get it.” Thirty seconds after, I was like, “NO. I’ve been waiting here longer, there’s no way she’s gonna get it.”

Time ticked by. Oh where, oh where was my tweet.

Finally, the girl was packing up her stuff and gonna leave. Yes! Then a PenguinTeen staffer came over and said not so covertly to her co-worker that they’d be tweeting out the thing, so be ready. The girl stopped putting her stuff away. No! 

That was when I noticed another girl hovering. More no!

We all got ready. We all shouted “Nightbringer!”

We all looked around anxiously.

A tie breaker of Rock, Paper, Scissors was suggested.

I died a little inside.

An idea popped into my head. I suggested we share it.

We shared it!

And thus, this is how BLOOD FOR BLOOD did not become the book I read first from BookCon. I’m reading Torch so I can send it along to Healy and Lauren.

But, you know, it’s really good so I’m not complaining. Torch is slowly consuming me, and I keep imagining it as a big epic movie. Seriously, someone get on this!

I recall all of this with what I know now about my dad, and feel like none of this matters. That it’s insignificant. Sometimes I’ll think about it now, and it’s like I wasn’t really there for any of it. The Michella at BookCon feels so far away from the Michella At Home Writing This Right Now. BookCon!Michella is like an AU.

What I’m Thinking About
My dad has had depression as long as I can remember. My dad has hated therapy as long as I can remember. My dad is now in a psychiatric ward, and seems open to therapy.

My dad reached a point where he felt so bad he went to the kitchen, looked at our knife set, and thought, “This is a good idea.” Or, “They’ll be better off without me.” Or, “I don’t want to live.”

I don’t know what he was thinking. I don’t know if he was even aware of what he was doing. I think the not knowing scares and puzzles me most.

I want to know if this was purely a side effect of the wrong meds, or it’s something more.

I can’t look at the kitchen knives.

My mom broke down in front of me yesterday. They bought those fancy knives together, she said, their first set as a married couple. She was horrified with what they were used for.

My mom said she cleaned up all the blood with her friend. But we found some yesterday, on a paper sitting on the coffee table. It was the first thing I saw that said, “This is real.”

Seeing the bandage on my dad’s wrist earlier that day didn’t resonate as much. I don’t know why. Maybe because I saw the bandage in a sterile, controlled setting, and the dried blood was in my constant reality, my safe space, my home.

I haven’t been able to ask her which knife it was.

I don’t know if I want to know.

But I also don’t want to touch any of them.

My mom doesn’t know if we should keep them, or throw them away. But if we do, then the new knives will always be The Knives After Dad’s Suicide Attempt. Which is worse?

What I’m Doing
I just got back from Chicago yesterday. While my trip had a lot of good, it also had a lot of not so good.

Leading up to my trip, my dad was not doing well. He wasn’t sleeping. He was anxious. He was down. I did not want to leave, but I knew I had to. On the way to the airport, he had some sort of mini breakdown, and my mom maintains that he passed out briefly. I don’t know. I just won’t forget the sound he made deep in his chest.

When I landed in Chicago, I had an easy commute to my hotel and was excited to meet Mel finally. But things with Mel didn’t go well; her anxiety was too bad, and she left early, missed the convention, and wasn’t available to take me out on Sunday. I cried a lot on Friday. I went through a range of emotions: anger, guilt, confusion, sympathy, uselessness, sadness.

Mel and I have talked every day since NaNo 2013. I haven’t heard from her since Friday. I feel this sense of loss. Every once and awhile I’ll feel like I should be talking to someone, and then I’ll remember why. I don’t know if I should be the one to say something first, but I don’t want to be. But I also thought if I could talk to anyone about mental illness, it would be her, and now she’s not around.

But then I’m glad she skipped the convention. I was in line at 6:30 with my friend Brittany, and the line was nuts. At 8 we were moved into the queue hall and packed tightly close together so no one would be able to cut the line. The sheer amount of people all around us would have been too much for her.

Once the show floor opened, we took off for Penguin’s First in Line event. It was euphoric. Waiting in line for hours was totally worth it for GEMINA, THE SUN IS ALSO A STAR, and AND I DARKEN (the three I most wanted). It set the day off on the right tone. From there I went to the EVERLAND signing, then to Little, Brown to see if they had extra SEVEN DAYS OF YOU from BEA, and they did! I helped Brittany score an ARC of NEVERNIGHT. I got A SHADOW BRIGHT & BURNING. I met up with the Pitch Wars group. We grabbed a few more galleys and then went to see Leigh Bardugo and Marissa Meyer’s Truth or Dare and then got ice cream with Morgan Matson. I coerced all of them into reading WOLF BY WOLF.

It was a fast-paced, busy, exhausting day. In my heart of hearts, I know Mel would not have been able to do it, but I still wish she had been able to experience it.

After dinner in Chinatown with my Pitch Wars crew, I went back to my room and called my mom.

She told me Dad was in the ER. She told me he was fine.

I knew she was lying. I didn’t push it.

What I’m Feeling
I understand why my mom lied to me. I understand she wanted me to have a good trip, especially after what had happened with Mel the day before. I understand wanting to tell me in person. I understand she was in a hard situation. I understand she was sad, angry, confused, scared, everything.

But now I think about BookCon, and what a great day it was, and then I think about what I was missing here and I feel like, Something has been tainted. I can’t just think about BookCon as I have all weekend. How can it still be the last time I was really, really happy?

I wonder if she’d just told me on Saturday, if I wouldn’t feel like I have to reorganize and reprocess everything. If I’d known on Saturday, BookCon wouldn’t have had a chance to be gold plated in my memories. The high of Bookcon and horror of my dad’s suicide attempt would have been encoded together. But I’m not blaming her, or upset with her. I’m just trying to figure out how to navigate this new normal.

I’m angry. I’m angry at my dad’s doctor for changing his meds, not following up, telling him to stop the meds, giving him a medication that’s a stimulant and doesn’t help with anxiety, not turning his case over to a psychiatrist, not paying enough attention.

I’m angry I left my mom alone to handle all this.

I’m thankful she had a friend with her.

I’m angry I wasn’t here.

I’m scared treatment won’t work. I’m scared I’ll never be able to look at knives with the same indifference as before. I’m scared I’ll never be able to cook with them. I’m scared treatment will work, my dad will come home, and relapse.

I think about BookCon a year from now, back home in New York. I won’t have to travel. I wonder about where we, my family, will be one May from now.

I hope we’re better, stronger, healthier.

I hope I can look at knives.

I hope my dad is still here.  Not just here, but truly living. Happy.

Scan 2016-5-17 0002.jpg