Born- May twins. We were early. Weeks too soon. Doctors shake heads. “She will die.”
My mother prays. I’m three pounds. But I fight. And I live. I’m not whole. Mental problems surface. But that’s later.
Twins are hard. Tom and Anna. We must share. We always fight. Friendship comes later. Every Saturday- adventure. Lost in woods. I am happy. I love stories.
School starts. I don’t learn. I cannot read. I cannot write. Math is evil. Nobody knows why. I’m just different. Second grade - click. Words make sense. I am words. Full of them. I read - always. Then come bullies. I am friendless. I’m outcast, alone. So I read. Fantasy sustains me. Characters are friends.
Mom thinks, homeschooling. For two years. I keep reading.
Catholic school - Hell. Not a joke. It is Hell. I am betrayed. My trust’s broken. Bullies are back. More of them. I am lost. Books, my world. And cats, too. Love my cats. But not enough. Depression closes in. Blade kisses skin. Books are salvation. I dive in. And I fight. They keep taunting. Rip books away. So I write. Writing equals escape. Middle school ends.
Attempted novel’s trash. So’s the second. But I continue. Poetry, fantasy, everything.
School’s a blur. I do Theater. Narrator in “Dog-ear.” I make friends. Friend-family of nerds. I’m not alone. I don’t forget. My past haunts. I grow stronger. Not taller, though. I learn trust. And I live. Darkness returns, sometimes. But I live.
College is...Adventure. People are kinder. Miss my bookshelves. It goes wrong. I can’t think. Drowning in sorrow.
Doctor shakes head. “You have Hypomania.” That’s bipolar disorder. It’s no surprise. I have guessed. 30 breakdowns/ month. That’s not normal. I’m not normal.
I keep reading. I keep writing. I keep fighting.