In a month I'm moving to St. Louis to begin grad school. This will be the first time I've lived outside of Illinois since I was a baby. (I was born in Virginia and we moved to Illinois soon after.) This is the first time I will be living in a city... Springfield is the biggest place I've lived and it's tiny in comparison to St. Louis, which itself is tiny in comparison to the big neon cities. I'm excited and I'm humbled and I'm nervous and I'm so ready to be the best grad student I can be. I found an apartment; I picked out where my neighborhood bar will be and my neighborhood coffee shop and I'm GOING. And I hope it goes great-- I'm gonna throw my whole heart into this new chapter of my little life and try to be open and OK with having a lot in the air at once and OK with the ebbs and flows. I feel full of POSSIBILITIES and very THANKFUL.
I don't know what the future of Mental Thrillness is, in terms of the personal essays I write here. You see, I feel a conflict; on one hand I am compelled to share because I wish more people talked about this stuff, on another, really, others are already doing this same work, and better than I am at that. Additionally, I am interested in the private, the sacred in my life. I'm disinterested in fueling some online persona or narrative where I'm synonymous with depression or anxiety. Sometimes my blog seems uncomfortably close. I fear it makes people think they know me, but they don't, because of course what I write about here is not my WHOLE experience, but a part of it. And-- I don't know how I feel about strangers knowing the details of the lowest of my lows. I wish I felt more comfortable with it, as a Millennial I probably should, but it feels gauche, a bit of an overshare, maybe even tacky.
This is kind of why I love to write poetry: I can share my guts in a way that (to me) feels more appropriate, more productive, more graceful... because (if it's a decent poem!) I can take me, my emotions, and create A THIRD THING, that then lives on its own and dances and because of that autonomy seems less self-serving. I never want to be the Woe Is Me girl. I just want to be Emma-- I am a PERSON, layered and complex and fucking things up and figuring them out.
I will keep Mental Thrillness as my website. I'll post art updates and life updates when appropriate, and brainstorm ways to crack this space open and let it breathe. Who knows what that will look like and, probably, WHO CARES.
In the meantime, I can continue to write and work on my own mental health in the mundane, mostly private ways which work best for me. This is long-game work, very rewarding, and ultimately, mine to unpack on my own, in my apartment, with the doors closed and the music playing just for me to hear.