For National Suicide Prevention Week

Writing Prompt

What a perfect writing prompt for the upcoming Suicide Prevention Week! September 9th through the 15th is quickly approaching, so I wanted to do something in regards to that.

 

***WARNING: THIS POST TALKS ABOUT VERY PERSONAL SUBJECTS (DEPRESSION AND SUICIDE. PLEASE DO NOT READ IF THIS MAKES YOU UNCOMFORTABLE***

 

This is my story. I’m sure that my outcome is not typical, simply based on the speed of recovery. However, my hope is that I inspire someone who may be struggling with Depression or suicidal ideology to seek help. That has always been my goal – increasing awareness of Mental Health issues as well as speak out for those who do not feel capable of doing it themselves.

I am a survivor. For a good 10 years of my life, I suffered from Mild to Moderate Depression. However, because I did not know that the feeling of worthlessness was abnormal, I did not know that I needed help. Perhaps it was the fact that I was only Mild-Moderate and I was able to semi-function that I did not say anything to anyone. Maybe it was just the Depression itself that kept me from asking for help. Whatever the reason, I suffered for years.

While I don’t think that it had anything to do with my parents’ divorce, I believe that the resulting lifestyle from that sparked it. Even they will admit that the divorce was not an easy one. Also, I was bullied relentlessly in school, especially high school. Long story short, I did not have a ‘safe place’ for me to de-stress. I felt a sense of toxicity in the two places in which I spent most of my time – work and home.

Suicidal ideology transformed into a few attempts in my teenage years. Up until recently (almost ten years after I finally got help), I did not feel comfortable discussing the fact that I was very close to ending it all. I was in a very dark place and I wondered whether it would be better if I no longer existed. It wasn’t like I had many friends. Part of me was even under the impression that my ‘friends’ were only using me or that they pretended to like me. I believed that everyone was talking about me behind my back.

In high school, I had three rumors going around about me at one time. 1. That I was pregnant. 2. That I self-harmed. And 3. That I was a Satan worshiper. Being that I was in a private school, the third one ostracized me further. I was the ‘Goth’ kid in a place where everyone was preppy. Truly, I felt alone. None of these rumors were true, but people would come up to me and ask to see my arms to make sure I wasn’t cutting. It was embarrassing and demeaning. The school knew about it and did nothing.

My grades began to suffer tremendously. I never felt motivated to do homework or even to show up to class. Each year, I stayed home more than the allotted days and would walk through the halls at work like a zombie when I was present in school. Sophomore and early Junior year was when I made attempts at my own life. Luckily, I am still here today.

At that point in my life I was fed up. My school counselor called me a liar when I told her that my grades were starting to improve because the teacher had not updated assignments and she only saw the grade that was available. They refused to put me in the yearbook Senior year because, when I got my Senior pictures done, my hair was blue, purple, and pink. The teacher only decided to tell me this with a 2 week notice. So, I’m not in the yearbook that year. Not to mention, someone I knew in the Yearbook class said that the teacher was upset that I didn’t get my photos redone although other students were not depicted in the book along with me.

I finally exploded. I told my counselor that I was literally going to kill myself if I did not get help. It was a burst of anger and confidence to finally talk about how I had felt on a daily basis for so long. The darkness had become a part of me and I was done letting it take over my life. I wanted to feel happy again. I didn’t want to dread waking up and the daylight hours. I wanted to enjoy my life.

My dad was kind enough to turn around on the highway on his way to an out of town work event and take my sister and I to therapy. In only 1.5 years, I was given a new chance. I did a complete 180* in a short amount of time. Turns out, all I needed was proper coping techniques in addition to the self-esteem to love myself for who I was. I would never have been able to help myself in the way that my therapist helped me. And that, my dear readers, is why I think that therapy is so vital to the healing process.

Because of my experience, I went to college and received a Bachelor’s of Psychology. I was awarded Psychology Student of the Year at my Community College in 2013, made the Dean’s list every semester (Community College & University), received a scholarship for academics, and even became a Research Assistant at my University. My goal is to help, however I can, to raise awareness for the insensitivies towards Mental Health in America. By squashing myths and educating the general public, I can hopefully reduce the stigma and taboo associated with suffering from a Mental Illness. Hopefully my books will give me enough popularity that I can spread my voice over a wider audience.

Fast forward to today. I am 26 years old and finally feel like I can fully love myself. My life has changed so much. I have a beautiful daughter and I am confident I am on the right path with my life. There will be some drastic changes in my life soon, but I feel freer!

This, readers, is a seemingly bad situation that turns into a life change. Never be afraid of who you are and what you struggle with. You are NOT alone. If you feel like you cannot life another day, know that there are others who are on the same path. YOU CAN BE A PHOENIX AND RISE FROM THE ASHES!

I hope this inspired some of you to write your own story. If you feel comfortable, comment with your own bad situation that turns into a positive life change. Spread the love!

Writing in the Rain 8/7/2018

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Wouldn’t you like to be known for something? Evelynn Turner always wanted to be famous and what kid wouldn’t? But she never thought that she would be famous for something as simple as baking bread.

The unusual thing was, no one taught her how to bake. Her parents, who were very wealthy, hired a professional chef to make everything from scratch. Even he could not be bothered to teach Evelynn. But every night, right after the maid left for the evening, the young girl would sneak down into the kitchen where the chef would leave the dough to rise overnight. After poking it to be sure it had risen enough, she would carefully slice a piece off of the ball and get to work.

Perhaps it was her meticulous care in making sure the bread was risen perfectly, or buttered properly. Whatever the case, she mastered baking rather quickly. The chef, up until that point, had made the dough. Each morning, Evelynn would sit her perfectly baked loaf next to the ball of dough, waiting for her parents to see it in the morning. It wasn’t until she started making her own dough that they began to notice her talent.

When the whole house was asleep, she would run downstairs and scoot a stool over where she could work on the marble counter top. Natural talent grew as Evelynn grew more confident. She started with simple loaves like whole wheat and white bread. Then she moved onto Challah and Naan, exotic breads. When her parents finally figured out that it was not their paid chef who was making these delicious, warm treats, they were shocked. Her mother, a businesswoman, decided to invest in her daughter’s skill.

Five years was all it took to become world famous for Evelynn Turner. Her mother simply provided the means and paperwork for a bakery. By that time, her daughter had moved into desserts. Cupcakes, cakes, pastries, she could make them with ease. No recipe, no formal training. She was barely a teenager when she made her first million.

On her eighteenth birthday, she decided to compete in baking competitions. Her shop, named “The Sweet Tooth”, was now fully staffed and her employees were trusted enough to be on their own for a few days. You name it, Evelynn signed up for it. Every time, she won. Her name was renown through the baking industry and she was completely self-made. Well, other than a little help from her mother.

Evelynn’s number 1 and 2 rule – Never write down a recipe, because it will change every time. And never teach the student more than what the teacher knows. She always made the dough and was adamant about that. Even into her seventies and eighties, she refused to let her workers even see how many eggs she put into her muffin dough. They were in charge of baking, she was in charge of creating.

Miss Turner passed away at the ripe age of ninety-three. Throughout her life, she did not take one day off of working. It was her passion, so it never felt like working. People that she only knew through “The Sweet Tooth” attended her funeral and people who her pastries had changed their lives made an appearance. All who watched her laid to rest were gifted one final pastry of their choice. Somehow, she had known that her end was approaching and spent three days making hundreds of pastries. It was her final note left on the tongues of the world.

She took her recipes to the grave along with her talent. No one could even come close to the taste that her baking provided. Countless times, her workers had begged her to share her knowledge with them, but she refused. For fear of someone stealing her recipes? No. She had said this, and only ever this:

“Flour is just flour and sugar is just sugar. It is the person, their personality, and their care that makes the bread.”

Be sure to check out Purpose. Check out the Bookstore for buying options! You won’t be disappointed!

Enjoy this writing prompt! Show me what you come up with! 🙂

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Writing in the Heat of Summer 8/1/18

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I’ve always wanted to know what it was like to have a closet. The kids at my school make fun of me. It hurts my feelings. I cry almost every day.

My house isn’t just for me. There are kids like me there too. But they aren’t my brothers or sisters. They were brought there like me, by their parents. And just like me, their mommy and daddy never come to pick them up. Some of them are brought by the police or people in black coats. A little girl was dropped off here yesterday and won’t talk to anyone, even me.

I like Mama Ingrid, though. The other kids don’t, but I do. She does her best, but always says she doesn’t have much money. Every day she wears a blue or white shirt. White has holes, blue has a stain. Her jeans are always dirty. I think they used to be blue, but now they’re brown and gray. Down at the bottom of her pants, where she wears really old shoes, there are more stains. I think they’re from the dirt outside. Oh… her shoes are a nice color, dark blue. But I think they were brighter before.

Some of the kids have a closet. Their parents gave them a suitcase full of clothes, but they never share. My parents brought me here when I was three, Ingrid said. So I grew out of everything. Mama Ingrid never had enough to buy me more than one outfit every year. And sometimes, my clothes would get too tight before Christmas.

When I go to school in November and my shirt is too small, my friends make fun of me. They push me down and laugh. And one time, the bullies tore my shirt and I still had to wait until Christmas. Mama Ingrid said I wouldn’t be able to eat for a week if she got me a new outfit before then. But the teachers never say anything. I know they are sad for me, but they know that my mommy and daddy are gone. They know that I live in the big wooden house at the end of the road. That’s where they say all the poor kids live.

One day. I will get a closet and fill it with clothes. I wish for that every night when I see a shooting star. Mama Ingrid said that if I wish hard enough, it will happen. She asked me what I want to be when I grow up. I said a teacher who doesn’t let kids get pushed around for not having clothes. But I don’t know why, it made her cry with a smile.

When I get enough money for more clothes, I’m going to buy them. I already have pictures from the magazines taped to my wall in my room. So I know what I’m going to get when I have money. Mama Ingrid says I have to wait until I can get a job. Maybe I’ll ride the bike around town and give people their newspapers. I can do that when I’m fourteen.

But one day. I will have a closet.

 

Sorry this one is short. This was the next Writing Prompt in my board on Pinterest. But today, it did not strike any chords with my deepest inspirations. Hopefully, the one I created below will give you enough for a story!

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Back to the Writing Prompts!

writing prompt

“Even canned goods go bad eventually.”

That was what his mother always told him. And that was before the bombs dropped. Now it was just Trevor. Well… not just Trevor. There were others. But they had no clue how to survive this chaos. So Trevor had to take charge. He told the others what his mother had taught him. Sometimes they would listen. But they were just kids. Most of them were under 12.

“Come on guys!” he said, throwing his hands in the air. The younger children had to, yet again, take another potty break. “We have to forage for food. We don’t have enough for even a meal!”

“Why can’t we go to the store?” one of the ten-year-olds asked. Her hair was matted and dirty. “Where is mommy and daddy?”

Trevor already knew it was coming. Another crying fit… from all of them. “I already told you all. Your parents died in the explosions.”

Everyone burst into a loud sob. He wanted to leave them, so badly. But he couldn’t let them die. And that’s just what would happen. They would starve. What he really wished for was an older adult. He was only eighteen and this was way too much responsibility for a teenager.

Where had the adults gone? In his rural suburb, they were in a town hall meeting. He was in charge of watching the children while the parents talked about what Mayor they were going to vote for in an upcoming election. Trevor always thought it was stupid. What difference would a small-town Mayor make anyway? Everyone knew everyone. If they had issues, they would sort it out with their fists or their words. He volunteered, against his mother’s wishes, to watch the children this time.

“I don’t want to vote anyway,” he snapped. “It’s a stupid election.”

But that was what saved Trevor a week ago. No one saw it coming. Hell. No one could see what caused the crater in Evergreen. Bombs? A meteor? Either way, it was another week walk to the closest town. And these kids were not making it easy to keep moving.

When they had all finally stopped crying, they were on the move again. Trevor had picked some wild blueberries and some oyster mushrooms for the group. And yet, there was another argument about what they liked to eat.

“I don’t like mushrooms.”

“I want a cheeseburger.”

“When can we find someone to feed us real food? Like chicken nuggets.”

Trevor sighed loudly, ignored them, and continued to lead them to the next down over, Baskerville. When these kids got really hungry, they would eat whatever he provided. Even mushrooms.

As they were trudging down the asphalt road, something caught a young girl’s eye. She pointed, but did not speak. The shimmer of the containers reflecting off the sunlight was beautiful. Or was Trevor becoming delusional? He hadn’t slept well in days. Food was scarce. Whatever he did find, he usually gave the children, leaving nothing for himself. Perhaps, he was becoming delusional.

“Canned goods.” He said to himself. The group cheered in unison while looking at the pictures on the wrappers. Ravioli, soup. It was enough to bring a tear to Trevor’s eye. His stomach started growling.

That was when he felt something sticky on his hand, underneath the can. He turned it over. A large hole was on the back of it. The contents were all over his hand and they did not smell good. He flipped the can upside down to read the expiration date. As he read the date, his heart sank.

“Even canned goods go bad eventually.”

 

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Scrawlings of 7/2/2018

writing prompt 19

 

I don’t remember how I got here. Where is here? Where the hell am I? An island. Somewhere.

Danica lifted her head off the coarse sand and looked around. Her vision was still hazy, but she was able to hear the lapping waves against the shoreline, the birds behind her where the treeline divided the beach from the forest, and another, unfamiliar noise. At first, it sounded like the wind. But then, as she craned to listen, the sound shifted to a soft, cold, shaking breath. Was it her own breath? But it did not match up with the rising and falling of her own chest.

What is that?

A feeling of fear shot through Danica’s body like she had been struck by lightning. It was so sudden that she thought something had stung her while she lay on the beach. Quickly, she jumped to her feet, surprised at her ability to move, and raced into the foliage. But still, she felt like she was being watched.

How did I get here? What is this place? So many questions rushed through her head. She hid in the brush, but could hear something moving around her. It was large and snarling. Danica was frozen in fear and could not turn around. Whatever it was, she could feel it’s breath on the nape of her neck, warm and moist. Then, she heard a voice.

“It’s time to stand and face your destiny,” the man’s voice said. “Danica Redvayne, I challenge you. Your throne and your life.”

Queen Redvayne immediately recognized the voice and spun around. Her family’s longtime enemy, Drannen Willowspear, had killed every one of her kin. If she died to his hand, he would assume her throne and govern the entire continent. She was young and naive, but had dabbled in magic as a child. It was unpredictable but it was the only weapon she had. And Drannen knew that.

Calm. Remain Calm Danni, she told herself.

Drannen dismounted from the large blank panther he was riding and pulled out his staff. Without a doubt, he was much more skilled in the arcane arts, but her abilities were unknown. There was a chance she could defeat him.

She raised her hands to release a column of fire, but only sparks sputtered from her palms. Run was the only word that arose in her mind.

She took off, running barefoot down a dirt path. Low hanging branches clawed at her face and caught her hair, tearing through flesh. Her body was numb. Drannen and his pet were right on her tail, but the brush was so thick that it was difficult for him to hit her with any spell.

Soon, his magic will be depleted, she reassured herself. I have the upper hand. My people can run faster than anything Drannen can ride… and I can run forever.

Another spell exploded over her head, breaking a large tree limb from above, missing Danica’s head by inches. Splinters shattered the ground, one embedding into the Queen’s calf.

She screamed in pain. If I can cast a Stoneskin spell, that shard will get pushed out of my body. It’s the only chance I got to keep going. Otherwise, I’m done for.

With one deep inhale, she tried to calm herself amidst the chase. It was just enough for her to speak the incantation correctly… Well, enough to have half of her body start transforming into a thick, hard skin. Lucky for her, it was the half that had been injured. And just as she had planned, the large splinter squeezed out from it’s wound and onto the ground behind her.

Even though Danica could run without fatigue, the island was rather small. She had traveled up a steep hill and was met with a straight drop down to jagged rocks and the sea below. When she scanned the treeline behind her, no trace of Drannen or his pet were to be found.

She capitalized on the moment of silence and hid in a small cave near the apex of the hill. The sound of her own breath was calming until she realized that even the birds had stopped chirping. For a moment, she thought of each funeral that she had attended in the previous year. Every single family member, murdered in cold blood by Drannen and his evil kin. He who controlled the throne, ruled the continent. It was only natural for someone to attempt to overthrow it.

But the Willowspear family had not always been enemies with the Redvaynes. In fact, their bloodlines were bound by marriage eons ago. But one betrayal sent the families into an endless feud. Assassinations and wars followed. In fact, the Willowspear family had been the family who held the throne for a millennia. When Radgar Willowspears wedded Elsiin Redvayne and mysteriously fell ill. He died shortly after their wedding, giving Elsiin absolute rule. Since then, the Redvaynes hold the the throne.

Drannen Willowspear had made it his life’s duty to wipe out the remaining members of betrayal. Up to this point, he had succeeded in massacring every member of Danica’s family  Only she remained.

“You can’t hide forever,” he taunted from the shadow of the forest. “Danica. I will end your miserable life and take what is rightfully mine. My family shall speak of this day for all time.”

She wanted to cry, but no tears came. I. Have. To. Try.

With a forced exhale, she stood up and revealed herself. Her enemy, once again, dismounted the massive black cat and slowly walked towards her. She backed up until her ankles crumbled against the edge of the cliff. There was no where she could hide. No where she could run.

She would either stand and fight or stand and face her death.

Just as Drannen lifted his staff and pointed it at her, she put her hands out and mustered all of the magic energy that she could. The light from the connection of the two energies, light and dark, blinded the entire region for a single moment.

 

I hope you liked this one! I wanted to leave it on a cliffhanger 🙂 Enjoy this writing prompt I came up with!

 

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