Nine days to go

I will shortly be embarking on one of the most exciting trips of my life. I’m nervous, anxious, scared, but also incredibly excited.

I’m still not sure I really believe it’s happening, but I am reminded every day that this is very real.

I’ve been doing very well the past few weeks. My anxiety has been almost nonexistent, and I have been sleeping a lot better.

I’ve started scrobbling to Last.fm again, so if you’re interested, go check out my profile here: https://last.fm/user/mattarnster

I’ll leave you with a song I’m playing every day at the moment:

Looking up at the night sky pt. 2

It’s incredibly quiet apart from the occasional owl or sheep calling out. It’s very calming to be outside at this time of night.

In 20 days I’ll make one of the scariest and biggest journies I’ve faced in my life so far.

I never thought I’d be doing this but here I am, faced with the reality that I’m going to be far away from everyone I know here.

It’s almost freeing in a sense that I am doing this, but at the same time, I feel something I’ve not felt in a long time.

I’m not sure I believe we are here for a reason, only to live our lives as we see fit. I’m young and have a whole life ahead of me, so I am making the best of it.

Cause I’m afraid of being nothing

So take this life and make it something

Marmozets – Hit The Wave

 

Control – thought dump 5

It’s been a while since my last update, I’ve been trying to figure out the right words to day since my last post.

Today has been the first day where I haven’t woken up to shaking and heart palpitations. I don’t feel the anxiety this morning – and it’s great.

A lot has happened in the past week or so – most of which I can’t share publicly, but for those in the know, it’s only been good.

Today, I feel in control of my emotions. I feel in control of my future, and what is going to happen in the next few months.

I’m going to be starting my 2x doseage of my antidepressant on Monday, and I really hope that the side effects aren’t going to be any worse.

The feeling of being in control is elating, I am overjoyed that I am somewhat of my former self. I can and will be happy again.

Next month, I am going far, far outside of my comfort zone. My close friends already know what this is about and I owe it all to them for making me feel a bit less terrified about what I’m going to be doing.

You know who you are – and for that, I thank you for being there for me to talk to, for me to just dump all of my thoughts upon. And for you, reader, for listening to the random thoughts of a guy on the internet.

I’ll leave you with this song. The lyrics mean a great deal to me. It’s about venturing into the unknown and facing your deamons.

They’ll tell you I don’t care anymore
And I hope you’ll know that’s a lie

‘Cause I’ve found what I have been waiting for
But to get there means crossing a line

Thank you.

 

Remembering – thought dump 3

Really wish that I didn’t care about you anymore, but I do.

I saw another picture of you today while browsing through old pictures.

You could find another me tomorrow, and that’s the hardest pill to swallow.

I didn’t feel as bad as I did yesterday when I saw your picture.

I’m still not sure how I feel about everything.

To have everything taken away from you in an instant, with no warning, everything gone… A feeling I cannot describe through words.

The damage is done, it is long lasting, and it hurts.

I’ve been taking with my friends at every opportunity. I won’t mention names. You know who you are, and you have helped immensely. People who have done their absolute best to try to understand what I’m experiencing.

As I lay in bed tonight, I am reminded of how amazing my friends and family are.

I hope one day that I feel differently about you. True love is not a fleeting feeling, it lasts for a long time.

The scars are real, they will not heal for a long time.

So come rain on my parade
‘Cause I want to feel it
Come shove me over the edge
‘Cause my head is in overdrive

Goodnight everyone. A new day dawns tomorrow. Hopefully a better one.

Waking nightmare – thought dump 2

Even when everything is going right, something small can still ruin your day.

Like this evening. I was doing fine until I saw a picture of you.

I don’t wish to be awake anymore, but you still haunt me even in my dreams.

There’s no escape from this nightmare which I am living in.

I wish to sleep, and not to dream.

I wish to be alone without the thought of you.

I wish to be free of this anxiety.

I wish to be free of this crushing feeling.

Looking out at the night sky – thought dump

Looking out into the night sky, I am reminded that I don’t want to be here.

I’d rather be on that plane, flying overhead, wherever it is going – it’s certainly better than here.

Or in the car driving past, wherever it takes me, it’s not here.

No-one should be put in the situation I am in. Needing a way out of all of this, and having nowhere to go is a horrible feeling.

Being alone is a horrible feeling. I know I am not alone and I have friends who care a great deal for me, but for the moment, I am truly alone with my own thoughts.

My thoughts scare me, and make me believe that everything can be saved by a very rash decision of killing myself. I would never act on these thoughts, but they’re here and they’re here to stay for the foreseeable future.

People keep telling me that it gets easier. But I don’t see it. I’m clouded in my own thoughts and feelings that it will never get better. I want to surround myself with my friends and I want them to hug me and tell me it’s all going to be okay.

The medication I am on is messing with my memory, my work and my judgement. I don’t wish for these side effects. I have an appointment with the doctor on Thursday next week to discuss this.

For the meantime, I’m still on my own – fighting these thoughts of suicide, hatred, anger, bitterness and sadness. Thinking “Will it ever get better?”. Sometimes I think I’m selfish to be burdening others with my problems when I am talking to them about it. My problems are insignificant when compared to what others are going through.

Last week whilst I was wondering the house in a complete daze, I had to put myself to bed, because I was afraid that if I didn’t, I would do something stupid and something I would regret later.

I’ve been compiling a list of all of the people who would miss me, and everything I am grateful for in life. It may sound stupid, but I am most grateful for the night sky. It shows how insignificant we are in the universe.

Right now, the inability to cry is getting to me, and I am emotionally numb. Worried that I will never be the same again.

For me, the sky will never be the same shade of blue again and I fear that any night may be my last. I hope I have the strength to make it through this.

Give your friends a hug, and let them know that you’re there for them. Even if there is nothing wrong. You never know what is happening inside other people’s minds.

Living in constant anxiety

Anxiety

A feeling of worry, nervousness, or unease about something with an uncertain outcome.

I’ve been living with constant anxiety for the best part of 2 months now. Truth be told, I’m not sure of the right way to start a blog post like this – but I’ve been through a very rough time recently. Going to sleep and waking up are the two hardest parts of my day.

Should I sink or swim, or simply disappear?

Every morning, I wake up before my alarm. My eyes shoot open, and the anxiety sets in immediately. I feel sick, I’m shaking, and I don’t want to get out of bed.

I’ve never felt like this before, and I absolutely hate feeling like this. I’m exhausted all of the time due to worries about what’s going to happen in the future. I know a lot of people would respond back to me with “You need to live in the now and not worry about what’s going to happen later.” Everything is uncertain, and that’s what makes me scared at night.

Sleeping on my own sucks – I absolutely hate being in an empty house, I hear every creak, bump and bang in the night. I have a white-noise generator which helps a bit, since I can’t sleep in silence either.

I can’t drown my demons, they know how to swim.

Talking to people about what I am going through only serves as a reminder to what I am experiencing, and sometimes it is hard to explain exactly what is affecting me so much. It seems everyone has been though the same though – it’s just my turn now.

Music helps me a lot. It’s therapeutic to get lost in the sounds of my favourite artists, and for that brief moment, I am free of this horrible mental burden.

Breathing techniques are also helpful in relieving temporary anxiety, but it will only last for a few minutes after you’ve finished the breathing exercise.

If you know if anyone who suffers from anxiety – please let them know that you’re there for them, and give them a hug (if it doesn’t make them worse).

For more information, please visit the following websites:
AnxietyUK
Mind
Headspace

Participating in ReactRiot 2017

ReactRiot logo

ReactRiot is a 48 hour online hackathon that I and a team of 3 other people participated in this year.

You can see our entry here:

http://www.reactriot.com/entries/227-moonunit

The rules are simple:
You have 48 hours to create a web application using the React framework.

Our team settled on creating a time-tracking application for busy freelancers, called MGMT. Our focus was to have a clean design with a simple navigation journey so that it doesn’t take the focus away from what you’re working on.

Our two talented designers began wire-framing out the navigation journey, whilst Toby and I started off with a create-react-app base for the app.

During the planning phase, we utilized a whiteboard in the office to track our to-do items and check them off once complete (like a KANBAN process).

Once planning was complete, we started on the build. In the end, we settled on the following additions to the React build to make our lives easier:

  • React-Router (for routing)
  • Redux (for state management)
  • Redux-Thunk (for even better state management)
  • Reselect (as above)
  • SweetAlert (for the sweet popups)
  • IcoMoon (icons)
  • Feather (icons)
  • Photoshop (design)
  • Github (source control)
  • Browserstack (for testing)

Throughout the build, Toby and I were still learning the ins-and-outs of Redux and Reselect, as I had used these in the past, but wasn’t completely knowledgeable in the libraries.

We had some problems during the build, such as hooking up parts of the redux state management, but we worked through them and eventually got it all working. Even up against the clock, I only slept for about 2-4 hours during the whole competition – relying on just energy drinks to keep me awake.

I think I’m most proud of the fact that, as a hobbyist react developer, that we could coordinate ourselves in a team to ship an MVP that looks as good as ours does. We have been complimented on the design a lot in our entry’s comments, so I am rather happy about it!

Special thanks again to Toby, Tim and George, who made this possible! Go check out their twitter.