Spurred Into Action

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Summer is not my season. It’s hot. There are too many little kids running around because school is out. Mosquitoes latch onto my skin as soon as I step into the shade. Oh, and there’s also not much to do because students are on holiday and written works need to wait for the fall publishing season.

I’ve been alive for 27 years and can only recall having one good summer. In 2015, I spent three fabulous months in Guiyang and then traveled around southeast Asia. 2015: the best year of my life.

Most people with seasonal depression spend the winter indoors underneath a warm blanket crying when they think no one is listening. Not me. Depression hits hardest when the sun burns bright in the sky and my face becomes an oily minefield of dirt, sweat, and makeup.

I used to think it was normal to think about dying every day until I expressed it to others who didn’t have those thoughts and ended up in the funny hospital in upstate New York. I call it the funny hospital because it’s funny waking up at 7:30 every morning just to sit in group therapy where you get to hear an old lady drone on about her Xanax addiction and frat boys tell everyone who has ears, “yo, I used to down a whole keg in one night, bro. I’m totally an alcoholic”.

Things that aren’t supposed to be funny have always made me laugh. I recall a time in fifth grade when my teacher cut all the pink erasers in half because the school district was too poor to give everyone their own. I couldn’t stop giggling and lost behavioral points that day.

Speaking of behavioral points, I felt thrilled when I went to college in upstate New York and finally got treated like a regular human being. You see, despite acing almost all academic tests from kindergarten through high school, they put me in special ed. Why? Because it’s Florida and back then they didn’t understand that putting the “behaviorally-challenged” kids with the learning-disabled did nothing for either group. I didn’t need to be in there. My parents knew it, too. My family educated me well from an early age. We were from up north. They didn’t like that.

When I was eight years old my dad bought me a computer. I loved it more than anything. Florida was awful. I thought everyone in that town was stupid and having a link to the outside world was all that kept me sane. Thank God for my Dad.

Well, fast forward to 2018: a world that’s become increasingly competitive and over-scrutinizing. Those arbitrary behavioral tests never disappeared. They are here in adulthood as well. They just aren’t as direct. The tests are about as nonsensical as the ones I had in elementary school but the people in charge still use them to deny opportunities to those who think differently.

It’s my life and I wanna live it in the most outspoken and fabulous way. I wanna feel everything and I am not ashamed of my past. I am not discouraged by the trials I’ve faced until now. Those things have shaped me into an innovator.

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