Tag Archives: featured

Is my soul fractured? Nope! My foot, however…

I fractured my foot. It will be something I deal with for the foreseeable future, but I am sure that modern medicine can help me out. Just like vaccines do! I just read an anti-vaccine post on Facebook and I would like to remind everyone that science has determined that vaccines do not, I repeat, do not, cause autism.

On the subject of vaccines, I have one question, are the American people who think vaccines are bad trying to win idiot awards or do they like the idea of children suffering? I want an explanation of why the measles are back, why kids are dying to them and why, it seems, that only entitled white people are anti-vaccine? I, myself, am an entitled white person by virtue of my skin color and I do not get how someone can deny life by saying no to a vaccine?

I follow a lot of social media and I tend to fact check something that sounds outlandish. Huge shout out to Snopes by the way! Why bring that up? Mainly because those who think vaccines cause autism do the same thing, but they forget to fact check. Also, I am no expert and I admit I do not understand vaccine science that well. I do understand the condition that anti-vaxxers are afraid of though.

Autism. It sounds pretty intimidating and horrible, right? Wrong. It is a genetic disorder that is hereditary and, to the best of my knowledge, can skip generations. It is a social anxiety disorder where the person who has autism is terrified of social interactions. It also has the learning issues in one of two areas: math or language. I am good at language and I am horrible at math. Those who have been following my blog know my stance on autism, but I thought it prudent to reiterate it.

Why am I bringing up the fake autism link again though? Simply put, I want to vent and being frustrated with anti-vaxxers has always been a good outlet for me to concentrate and distract myself. Distraction is a potent coping skill that I possess. I am venting because I am at a point where my self-esteem is low and I need to figure out ways to lift it up. The reason that my foot is fractured is that of all the weight I have been putting on it coupled with the extensive amount of walking I have been doing recently.

My body image is a direct link to my self-esteem and for some reason, I feel that I need to punish myself to combat my eating habits. My punishment is eating more and this led to me fracturing my foot. What really sucks about this is that I stopped doing it, but I did not stop soon enough. I hurt my foot and now I am stuck not being able to exercise in my favorite way. Walking has become a therapeutic activity for me as of late.

With a fractured foot, I cannot walk. If I cannot walk, my stress levels go up and I get depressed due to the stress causing me anxiety. I do not know what to do to exercise. I have lost a lot of weight since I began my walking, 56 pounds to be exact and I want to continue that trend. If anyone has advice please message me about this. I need help.

Rebellion for Hope

As some of you may know, I am a part of a charity based in Lancaster County called Rebel Cause. I am honored to be counted amongst the members of this group. It honestly feels like a second family when I’m around them.

Rebel Cause would not be possible without the leadership of Kaden. The founder of Rebel Cause. We had an event this past weekend at a local bar called Rumplebrewskins. I had a great time! Rebel Cause raised a good chunk of money during the event at Rumplebrewskins. This will go towards helping the people at the Water Street Rescue Mission in Lancaster city.

The event was covered by a local news station called WGAL and you can find that story linked at the end of this article. It was a big step for Rebel Cause to get news coverage. Kaden had already been recognized by the magazine, Revelo, but being covered by the local news felt validating. That is how it was for me at least. I am a journalism major and I think anything having to do journalism is always cool.

Rebel Cause raffled off Star Wars merchandise and I was envious of everyone who won something. The memorabilia we had was really unique and awesome. A local artist designed prints for us to give out and a local game store called FarboCo donated some Funko Pops to the event. There were black series of action figures and the members of the Brick City Blockade network brought some awesome Star Wars items from up in New Hampshire. There were two other major Star Wars podcasts there besides Rebel Cause and Brick City. They were the San Diego Sabers and the Star BQ podcasts.

Both of these podcasts are good friends to the Rebel Cause group as well as the Brick City group. That is the great thing about Star Wars. Unity in the community is a common phrase said during the various podcasts, as well as the Friendom. It is these types of rhetoric that give me hope in humanity. The world is so screwed up now, it is reassuring that Star Wars is still around to unite the world.

Now, Rebel Cause is more to me than just a charity. It is a place where my obsession for Star Wars has a home. A place where I’m completely accepted, despite my flaws. I do not want to dwell on myself for too long, but I feel at peace when I am discussing Star Wars and for a long time that peacefulness was gone. My love for Star Wars was fading and I count myself lucky to have been able to get involved in Rebel Cause. I was in a point in my life where my depression was getting too unmanageable levels and Star Wars, through Rebel Cause, brought me back from the brink.

I want to thank Rebel Cause, Brick City, Star BQ, San Diego Sabers and all of the Star Wars community for what they do. Not only for me but for the world. The impact these groups will have will, undoubtedly, grow. The friendom will expand and the great things Rebel Cause is destined for will become reality. Star Wars does so much for so many people and it is incredible to see that positive energy turned into something special with Rebel Cause. I am honored to be amongst the Rebel Cause Staff.

It is imperative that the friendom continues. Star Wars can help so many people and that is what Rebel Cause is tapping into. The generosity of others is always a pleasure to witness. I forget exactly how much we raised at the Rumplebrewskins event, but I am proud of this group. We got news coverage and we made some pretty awesome announcements during the event. For more information on those announcements, you can go to Rebel Cause’s Facebook Page.

May the force be with you guys!

https://www.wgal.com/article/star-wars-themed-party-and-fundraiser-held-in-lancaster/25663051

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Nick

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Battling the darkness inside my soul

I have a history of darkness in regards to my thoughts and feelings. Wishing wrongs upon innocents were a frequent attraction at the carnival that was my mind, but the worst offenses in my own mind were against myself.

Struggling alone was my past-time in High School, but once I got into the 12th grade I started a metamorphosis of thought. I made a couple of friends that I still cherish greatly. I do not talk to some of them much anymore, but their assistance in my mental health was and, for some of them, continue to be a constant light against the darkness that I feel. To those that still put up with me, thank you.

As of this post, the darkness that I feel is getting greater. I am taking steps to stop this descent and I am confident that I will claw my way out of this pit. It is hard for me to feel optimistic right now though. On a scale, which is a form of measurement I detest, I am an 8/10 on depression and an average of 10 out of 10 for my anxiety.

I have so many people that I know also struggling, and I want them to know I understand the pain they are feeling. I want to help them as much as I want to help myself. I have noticed that when I help others, I feel better and I live for that feeling. A feeling of euphoria takes me and it is a feeling, unlike anything I have ever experienced.

This darkness is not new to me and I want to use this event of darkness to exploit the darkness. I want to break the darkness that has a grip on me. I think that I need to break this feeling of self-hatred. This feeling of loathing for myself and the feeling of disrespect that I have for myself. I do not respect myself and I do not think I ever had.

I do not take care of myself physically, mentally, emotionally, or spiritually. As far as actual spiritual growth, I do not mean religion. I would rather not go into a religious debate either.

My spiritual growth has come in ways that are hard to explain. It has suffered lately and I think that stems from my lack of faith in humanity. That same of lack of faith has impacted everything in my life and I realize that building myself around the troubles of others is not healthy for me, but I need to and I will continue to do so. We are a large group of people. Humanity I mean, and I always find it really hard to understand the hate that exists in the world. I am no person to step up and fix the issues that are plaguing that world.

The long and short of this post is that I let environmental factors that I have no control over bother me. I need to focus closer to myself, but how can I? I need to help and I think that might be the issue. I want to help so badly that I sabotage my own care, and that is not good. Realizing this will definitely help as I walk down this road that I have established for myself.

 

Big Day Today

I am on the cusp of something great. I have been noticing a downward trend in my emotions over the past few months.

This trend is remminscent of how I have felt in my high school years. Back then, however, I could not detect it. I can now and I am taking steps to better myself.

I’ve told a few close friends about this already and I think I’ll keep the specifics to myself as to what I’ll be doing.

Just know, I am determined to defeat my depression, anxiety and paranoia. They have been disruptive lately.

I don’t want anyone to be overly concerned. I have had it worse than this and I persevered each time. I have no doubt that I will again. I will need support during this time, but I really don’t want worry to be a thing for me. I got this!

Why Do I Write?

This is a simple question that deserves a complex answer. Using answers that are expected— such as it being therapeutic, or me being required to do it for my job, or even just for the pure joy of writing— no longer satisfies me. I want to understand the emotion I derive from writing. Does my writing grant me blissful ignorance to the world’s problems? Does it compound the issues I face as a college student?

Regardless, one thing is certain, writing provides me with some form of comfort. While this is a common occurrence for writers, I find myself wanting to know more about the inner workings of my own personal writings. I want to unravel what goes on in my head as I write. Being that I garner no real thrill from academic writing, this self-discovery will mostly relate to my creative writings. After all, it’s the dreaded time of the year that Millersville holds their (or a different verb) final exams.

Throughout my personal history, I have had multiple instances of straying into the dark path of depression and anxiety. During those times, my creativity came alive; and with that creativity came a flair for dark and disturbing writings. When I attended Harrisburg Area Community College (HACC), I wrote a piece called “Begotten by Hate.” Looking back, this piece was objectively horrible. Reading that story brought me back to a time where the dark thoughts ran rampant. I hated everyone and everything, and the best way I knew to express it was through writing. Thankfully, I am well past that point in my life.

Nowadays, my writing has taken on a more existential flair. My writing is filled with questions about life and what it truly means to be happy. I know it may seem odd to question happiness, but that is how I navigate my way around such emotions. Happiness feels like a foreign concept, as for most of my life, I have felt the complete opposite. Writing is a beacon of hope in these instances, and it is interesting to see what types of conversations I get in with myself over the meaning of life.

A complex answer as to why I write is that I want to not only inform the public, but I want to protect the American people. In recent news, a journalist was butchered in Turkey at a Saudi Arabian embassy. Parts of my family now question whether or not my career path is safe. In all honesty, it does not matter.  In times like these, the need for journalists is greater than ever before.

The reason I write is because it is my duty to use this talent to help others and inform the public. And, though it may seem selfish, I want to prove skeptics wrong. I have autism and I want to prove that it is not, and never will be, a hindrance to my writing. I was told in high school that I would never graduate, and that I would never end up making it to college. Sufficient to say, I kicked down that door of doubt. I am thriving in college and I credit that, in great part, to my writing skills. I proved that guidance counselor wrong and I am continuing to prove that autism does not automatically mean you won’t make it far in life. Autism is not a hindrance to neither me, nor my writing.

Also, huge shout out to a good friend of mine. My EIC at the Snapper is a great human being and helps me out a ton. She even edited this for me!

 

Taking the next steps in recovery

As I alluded to in yesterday’s post, I am taking measures to better deal with my depression and anxiety. I have decided to work on that exclusively during my winter break from school.

I’m safe, but I do not like the road I am traveling. Going farther down this path will lead to an inpatient stay at a mental health hospital and that is the last thing I need right now.

That’s all for this morning. I’ll update when I am able.

Drifting along

I have recently made a decision that will impact my life in a good way. The daily struggles of being in college and not being able to afford not even half of what I would like to afford is emotionally draining. That brings up the question, for me at least, why does money have to be a factor in my happiness?

The sad truth of it is that I measure my happiness based on material goods and generally stuff that I buy. That is not a way to live for me, yet it is becoming all the more harder to force myself to think that way. As some of you may know, I am on SSI, which is a government assistance program for people with disabilities or that cannot work.

I look forward to a monthly benefit from SSI. I attempt to work small, low paying jobs to try to supplement what I am missing from SSI and I get help from my parents. Due to my spending habits, however, I am usually in the lower end of my bank account all of the time.

I am used to the feeling at this point, but I would rather not endure the anxiety I feel when I cannot afford something at a store, or get something to eat that I have been craving. Sometimes, I cannot even afford groceries at the supermarket. At these times I ask my Dad for help and I am very thankful to him for helping me.

The fact of the matter is that I need to learn to manage my money better. That is not the purpose of this post though and it causes me anxiety to think about it honestly.

My depression, thankfully, is at a place where I am able to manage it pretty well. My anxiety, not so much, the smallest thing gets to me and little things that used to just annoy me cause things like panic attacks. My panic levels are at places where I can manage them, but they are becoming a nuisance as of late. I have been keeping track of my panic attacks and, on average, I have eight to ten a week. I feel like I am able to maintain myself at this time and I am not super concerned, but it is something that I am going to be bringing up soon with my psychiatrist.

I apologize for not updating this site for awhile; I have been in college and I never really got a chance to devote time to the blog. I honestly missed writing a lot and this has been very therapeutic for me.

Autistic has become a slur it seems. The Rise of Anti-Vaxxers

I have noticed something as of late that really disturbed’s me. I’ve found it on social media and an occasionally I’ll run into someone who says it. This being the act of using the word autistic as a slur.

As someone on the spectrum I can say, quite confidently, that this is offensive to me. I have already received the answer back that I need to grow thicker skin and just need to let it go, but I will not be taking that advice. I do not identify as autistic; it’s not a choice and I never liked the implications from others that it is. The same for depression and anxiety. They are not choices and they are not something that you just shake off. They are mental disorders that need medical treatment.

I have never been on the receiving end of a, “Your so autistic.” I am happy about that and I am grateful that my group of friends see that it is not acceptable to use autistic in that manner. It is a shame that people think that slurs, whether they are racial of disabled in nature, are acceptable. The same argument that is used for the “R” word can now be applied to Autism it seems.

People on the spectrum never chose to have autism and if you think they did; you are reading the wrong blog post. Autism, like I have said many times, is something you are born with and not a choice. It is not the same as saying I want to wear a red shirt today.

The thought that I supposedly got autism through vaccines infuriates me. Do not misunderstand, I am not a person pleased with having autism, but you know what? It’s a lot better than being dead. It sickens me when I see various groups on Facebook claiming that a vaccine caused their child to have autism. I understand that big pharma is lining their pockets with all the medical care that those with autism may or may not require, but to say that is irrelevant. Irrelevant to the fact that some parents would rather have their child die at an early age instead of having autism. I truly do not get it. Am I that bad of a person that when a parent thinks of their child having autism they would rather them die from the measles? It is, frankly, idiotic.

Rebel Cause Lancaster

I have recently become involved in a charity organization in Lancaster, PA. It is known as Rebel Cause Lancaster.

What is great about me joining Rebel Cause is the validation that it gave. Prior to learning about the group I was close to a point where I did not know what to do with Star Wars. I still loved the franchise, but I had no one to share this love with. I am not even sure how I came across Rebel Cause, but I wrote an article about them for my school newspaper, The Snapper. You can find the article here.

I never imagined what would become of my interaction with Kaden Patrick, the illustrious leader of Rebel Cause, at the American Bar and Grill in Lancaster. Long story short, I joined up with Rebel Cause as a social media/ writer guy.

We recently had an event at a bar in Lancaster called Rumplebrewskins. The event was a great success and I am amazed at how the Star Wars community came together to raise money for Water Street Rescue Mission. It made me proud to be a Star Wars fan once again.

I had lost that pride prior to meeting Kaden and getting it back was one of the greatest feelings I have ever had. Star Wars means many things to me, but the main thing is it was, and continues to be, my rock. It has always been there for me and I will always appreciate what it has done for me.

Knowing that Rebel Cause has my back now is great. Like I said earlier, I feel valid in my love for Star Wars.

Thank you Rebel Cause. You turned out to be my New Hope.

Feeling Depressed and not knowing why: a man with autism and his guide

So I am feeling depressed right now. Instead of dwelling in self hatred; I have decided to try to help others who suffer from depression. To do this I am going to look at my feelings right now. Analysis will come after, alongside some reflection.

To start, my anxiety is also quite high. I would say a 7/10. Why am I anxious? Mainly from thinking about the future, my romantic interests, my grades, and my job. All are pretty big things I imagine. It seems to choke me with anxiety. What I do distract myself is two-fold. I go into my local game store, LGS, and I play games. Such as magic the gathering or DnD. The distraction helps, but is not a cure all for me. I have to figure out ways to curb my anxiety. To do that I need to pinpoint some triggers for myself.

One of my biggest triggers is becoming social. This is not a bad thing, yet it is still a trigger. Anxiety, for me, has always been a way for me to figure out my comfort levels. Nowadays I purposefully put myself in situations that cause me anxiety. I want to know the limit of how much I can take.

It’s not much today, unfortunately. Little things set off my anxiety. The silver lining being that it was just a small amount of anxiety. Management of this level of anxiety comes pretty easy for me. Walking around Lancaster city is a trigger for my anxiety and I have come to be really good at managing this type of anxiety that I get.

Back to the original question though, and I still find myself unable to answer well enough to satisfy myself. Thinking on it, I can say with confidence, that I am unsure of my future. I know I want to finish college and graduate, and I want to get a job. Besides those two goals; I am at a loss of what I want from life.

I want a lot of things for my life to pan out and I am not confident that they ever will. I feel like I have fallen off of any motivation that I might have had to pursue those things either.

The main thing that I find I have been struggling with is my feelings for others. I have them, and they are quite strong, but I am afraid of rejection and I feel like a coward for not outright asking them to go out sometime. I have been burned multiple times, I think, and I don’t like the feeling that I get when I am rejected.

That feeling is an overwhelming anxiety at that moment. That is pretty much it for my romantic centric stuff.

I did okay this semester with my grades. I feel like I need to do much better though. I hold myself to a standard that I am not meeting. It’s weird, I get anxious and depressed about my grades so I try to distract myself from it and I then do bad on my projects. That leads to me doing bad at school. It’s a vicious cycle. I need to figure out a way to regain my motivation.

My depression is the main wall in getting my motivation back. I have spots of high motivation, but they last a couple days at most. Then my depression comes creeping back.

I have anxiety about my job mainly because I missed two days. This was due to a medical issue, but it still caused me a lot of anxiety. I tend to have bouts of imaging the worst possible thing that could happen, happen. I am enjoying my job a lot now though and logically I cannot see anything bad happening.

The way I dealt with this bout of depression, and many others, is attacking it with logic. I have a logic based thought process and using that is great for getting rid of anxiety and depression. I simply tell myself that depression does nothing to positively affect me. It is a negative feeling. Logic dictates that I do not need it. The same for my anxiety.

This is a way that I deal with my anxiety and I know it works for me. I am always looking for other ways to approach my depression, and I would like to see if other ways work well for others. Please comment if there is a technique that you use that really helps you. Thanks for reading.