My story is literally laid out in front of me, each chapter represented by a sticky note. I move them around and try to decide which order I could place them in that would be the most meaningful.

All of the sudden, I am shy.

This story is fairly quiet. There is no obvious climax. There is no running away. There are no encounters with the police.

And then I realize how beautifully appropriate that is. Sometimes mental illness is loud and terrifying. But in many, many cases, it is quiet and terrifying. The chapters all lined up on my kitchen table represent thousands of moments of intense desperation. A fierce longing for the emotional distress to ease, the mental anguish to let up.

Some might scoff at the simplicity, expecting a more interesting story.

I am also certain that those who have been there that will find pieces of themselves in the chapters. They will know they aren't the only ones who have visited or even found themselves  confined in those dark corners of their minds.

Those who haven't been there but come and read carefully, seeking to better understand a loved one's struggle will find meaning here.

The one thing that inspires my writing even more than the therapeuticness of putting all of this into words is that I feel I have hope to offer. And I hope most will have that to take away.

So I move forward, because all of those scenarios are okay with me.

Next Chapter: Church Parking Lot


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  2. I know that you are a shy person. That's why people like you so much!

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