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Throughout my entire life, there has always been one thing I wanted to be. A farmer. Then I found out that cartoons had been lying to me all my life and they don't just play with the animals on the fields, but they raise them for meat. Thus began the gradual descent where I am today: a bisexual vegetarian whose main goal in life is to have an apartment in Venice, Italy. Oh, and someone who is shaken by their PTSD, depression, and anxiety.
I know, there's a lot of information missing there.
When I was growing up, I was raised in a very traditional family. We were Italians growing up in Canada, so it was very important to my parents and grandparents that we retain the culture from their country. Unfortunately, something else that came with my family, besides our amazing traditions, were terrible genes.
I was diagnosed with a heart disease, and at 10-days-old I had to have heart surgery. Then, my childhood years were spent watching my sister and grandfather go in and out of hospitals. I was dealing with growing up being terribly confused about my sexuality and unable to speak to anyone about it, and trying to figure out what and who I believed in. As for my adult life, it has been beautiful and extremely violent all at the same time.
As a result of my traumatic childhood memories from hospitals, mixed with my eating disorder, barely stable mental state, sexual assault, and suicidal tendencies, my psychotherapist diagnosed me with PTSD, which is where my depression and anxiety came from. Finally, after 25 years of not knowing, the intense darkness inside me finally had a name.
However, before I started therapy, and even while I was speaking openly about my mental health, no one besides a select few people really knew how bad it was. I often refer to myself as "Queen" among my friends, as growing up, I realized that in this world, where capitalism and money has us by our private areas, I could not live in my fantasy world (as much as I wanted to). So, instead, I fashioned a new idea for myself. If you show the world the most perfect version of your outside self, they will think you are unstoppable. I get a lot of inspiration from a fictional character from Gossip Girl named Blair Waldorf, and I made it my constant mission in life to climb to power and success the way she did. To be powerful not just in her career, but in her relationships. To not rely on anyone. It took me a while to get there, but after some time, I had perfected the role. Although I often said self deprecating jokes to my friends, and we all tagged each other in memes, to everyone, I had it all together. I was saving money, getting my car, getting my degree, and working all while safely keeping my bisexuality hidden away. Even at my recent job, to so many, I was such a delight because I was always smiling and laughing.
Unfortunately, being Queen isn't everything, and I had to learn that the hard way.
In keeping it all together, and in not talking to people about what I was going through, and how I truly, really felt, I began to spiral into a place like no other. My thoughts worsened, I blamed myself for things that were not even my fault, I victim shamed myself, and I took on the problems of everyone around me, to avoid looking at my own.
Then, my bird Skye, who was my best friend in so many ways, died, and I truly felt as though I had died with him.
So, yes, I had a plan. I had a plan to take myself out of this Earth, convinced that it is a terrible place to be. Between humans killing each other, wars, death, disease, and famine, on top of all of my personal problems, I figured, seriously, what was the point?
To make an ever so long story short, I didn't do it, thanks to my friends and family, who are stubborn and wonderful, and refused to allow me to take myself out of this place. Sometimes I still hate being here, and I'm working hard every day to feel better about being alive. Sometimes I love it. Sometimes I see beauty in animals, and people, and listen to a song and feel such immense joy that it surprises me that I ever thought about leaving in the first place.
When I decided to stay, I realized that I could be Queen, while still keeping my subjects close to me. I could still have everything I want, and be happy too.
I don't have to keep it together, all the time. In fact, being happy all the time is kind of ridiculous.
I hope that whoever reads this gets what I am trying to say. Opening up is freaking terrible, and it hurts, and it can really make you feel like you aren't breathing. But holding it in? It twists inside you and kills you from the inside out. It darkens your soul, blackens your mind, before you finally give into those voices.
So, talk about it. Even if it is to strangers online, talk to someone. Call a helpline. Talk to a friend. Chances are, people would listen, even when you are convinced that they won't. People, I have found, are a lot better than I give them credit for. There is a lot of good in them.
It's been almost a year since my plan to commit suicide, and though I am not perfect, I'm doing okay. For now, that's enough.
And yes, I am still a Queen.