I write about all kinds of human experiences big and small.
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I was sitting in my living room with my best friend the other night when she began to grow angry. In recollecting one of her favorite TV shows, The Office, she blurted out that she “felt guilty” for watching it because it had been the go-to show for her and her ex-betrothed. They separated a long time ago, and she recently celebrated her one-year anniversary with her new boyfriend. From this memory, our conversation about comedy TV turned into a mutual pondering of how bad we each should or shouldn’t feel about enjoying things we used to enjoy with exes.

When I thought about it, there were definitely some things that I could not tolerate because of associations with my own Evil Ex. …


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Any writer can tell you that their work comes with its difficulties, whether they choose to pen fiction, finance, self-help, or just about anything else. Writing itself is challenging, and trying to build an audience is even harder. Even if writing is one’s “calling”, it doesn’t always make it easy.

With the occasional exception, I typically write self-help-driven personal essays. I follow a scheduled format of opening my articles with a thesis and then contributing to that statement with a body of personal experiences that I believe both provide myself credibility and allow the reader to know that they aren’t alone if they’re also dealing with whatever sticky situation I’m discussing. …


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In the beginning, I was playing outside in a field on a bed of grass. There were children everywhere and a few other teachers, and I was fidgeting on the grass trying to close all of the goody bags that we’d made for the kids. Maybe it was field day or something. The sky was such an opulent blue and the clouds were wispy but still full enough to envision shapes when you looked up at them. No one was wearing masks, either, so I assume that the pandemic was over. …


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2017 was a really bad year for me. I ringed in the New Year in a psychiatric facility, and though my time there was brief, it led to a circus that included a new psychiatrist and a whole bunch of new medication. Along with that circus came a bunch of diagnoses I hadn’t ever heard of before, which included:

  • Borderline Personality Disorder (BPD)
  • Bipolar Disorder
  • Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD)
  • Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD)

For years, I was treated with Lithium, Seroquel, Zyprexa, Xanax, Ativan, Klonopin, Lamictal, Abilify, Doxapine, Trazodone, Latuda, and others. At any given time, I was on four to six different antipsychotic, antidepressant, mood-stabilizing, and anxiety-reducing medications at once. …


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It doesn’t feel very impressive when I open Medium every morning and see roughly 40 followers and 1,000–1,600 views per month. In fact, when I compare myself to the posters in Medium hubs on Facebook, I feel abysmally small. As my peers share massive earnings statements and stats with 10 times the amount of views on one article compared to what I have for a whole month, I wonder what I’m doing wrong.

Then, I stop and think about how my growth here has been enormous. $20 over three months doesn’t sound like much, but wait until you hear this:

For my first month here, I was paid out 17 cents. For my second month, $5.00. …


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A typical day for me includes a little bit of tidying up my apartment, getting to work early, and cooking dinner at the same time. I find time to write in between my daily work schedule and my tutoring schedule, even striving to wake up early each day just to get some extra writing in. When I don’t have any assigned responsibilities, I assign them to myself and make sure that my novel receives the 1,600 words per day that it deserves.

When it comes to schoolwork, I cannot say the same thing. No matter how old I grow and how much more responsibility I accept, I still seem to find myself waiting until the day-before or day-of my deadlines to complete my academic work. In fact, as I write this, I am supposed to be writing a paper that is due tomorrow at midnight. …


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Since the days of coming home from high school and devouring three or four novels per week, I’ve known that I wanted to be a novelist. There was something so deeply captivating about fiction that I had a book with me wherever I went, and even now as a busy graduate student, I still find time to indulge in the incredible worlds of great novels. When I’m not acting as a teacher’s assistant or as a tutor to pay my bills, I’m working on my craft so I can fulfill my dream of becoming my own favorite author.

A few months ago, someone asked me to create a list of my heroes and my all-time favorite artists. Since my prerogative is to be a novelist myself, I thought hard about all of the book signings I’d been to and all of the time I spent during my teenage years bingeing on my favorite writers. I finished the list and was startled to realize that there wasn’t a single woman on my list. …


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If you know what it’s like to have been a miserable person in the past, you probably don’t want to go back to whichever job, spouse, or situation was sucking the life out of you. You know what goodness is now that you’ve eaten, prayed, and loved like all of the self-help books told you to, and you never want to go back to that ugly period of your life where there was no “what-if” because every day was unconditionally horrible.

When it rains, it pours. Looking back on my life, I see a past where I had poor relationships with friends and romantic interests all around me, a poor relationship with myself, a poor relationship with my college education, and a poor mindset about everything. I was doomed until I wasn’t, and once I fixed one aspect of my life, I decided to go about fixing everything. Little did I know that that phrase “when it rains, it pours” could mean goodness reigning and raining goodness. …


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As a once-accomplished varsity cross country runner and half-marathon finisher who used to be skinny as a twig, I feel compelled to take some time and map out the differences between running “now” and running “then”. Running is one of my all-time favorite passions in this life, but boy is it different running as a size 14 compared to running as a size 4.

It’s not actually about size so much as size is to help qualify the changes — it’s about the differences in speed, strength, stamina, and confidence. Whether I woke up tomorrow and found myself at a size 2 or a size 22, I’d still be running because it makes gray days exhilarating and is justified as quality exercise, which is great for my mental health. …


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As a child, I liked to think of my shyness as a kind of precociousness. No one ever knew what I was thinking, and I liked it that way — it was like a big secret that I was keeping all to myself. I gave up on fitting in with my peers by the time I reached the 10th grade, and led a lonely childhood composed of myself, my secrets, and my time alone reading books.

It wasn’t as though I chose not to fit in. I’d tried time and time again to make friends, but my role as the quiet girl always prevailed. Back then, this worked for me because I was a solitary person to begin with. Now, as an adult, I can’t help but feel entirely strange and misfitted when I fail to assimilate in every workplace and social environment that I’m introduced to. It’s okay to be different, but it doesn’t feel okay to settle into the role of the quiet girl for the rest of my life. …

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