Some Thoughts on Amazon’s The Boys

blog post august 5th 2019

ALL WRITTEN AND ARTWORK ARE THE INTELLECTUAL PROPERTY OF PSG LOPES. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED, 2019. 

I just finished watching Amazon’s The Boys and have some observations I’d like to share with you all. First of all, I absolutely loved the idea of seeing superheroes, for once, being heavily flawed, culpable, and not as infallible as they’re always depicted. I also really liked how “The Boys” were “the good guys” or anti-heroes, really.

I have always had several issues with superheroes that I never voiced out loud for many years. My views may be seen as a widely unpopular opinion but here goes anyway. I always quietly noted all of the violence, all of the deaths, especially all of the collateral damage that was done while superheroes purportedly “saved the day.” You rarely see the superheroes acknowledging or taking a moment to apologize, to grieve, or to recognize all of the senseless lives lost and if they do it’s a mere afterthought. These superheroes are always larger than life characters who were given these powers and decided to dedicate their lives to being noble while saving the world from crime. But what if it’s not so black and white as we’ve been accustomed to while watching or reading tales in the DC or Marvel Universe?

The Boys provides a view of what it might really be like living in a world with superheroes in this day and age. We are heavily tied to technology and you can’t get away with anything these days without someone catching your actions on their phone and posting it to several social media outlets. You have to be careful with what you say, spin your words in a way that will get people to follow you, believe in your actions, and even pick a group, and with this show, in particular, the religious community and have them support your cause. In this world, they were made to be superheroes at birth and it wasn’t by some freak accident or some other hackneyed cause that became commonplace with superhero origin stories. We see how the individuals who are known as “The Seven” cope with their superhero status and how they unravel in front of our very eyes in quite a sight to behold.

You have A-Train who is fighting to keep his status as the fastest man alive, facing the reality of aging and the limitations of his body and toying around with Compound V to help him maintain his status as a renowned and beloved superhero. He inadvertently kills someone while speeding through residential streets with little regard for anyone but himself. He even sacrifices his own beloved Popclaw to cover up one of his many messes. To what end do your actions persist without consequences? One of the most poignant moments in the series is A-Train’s last conversation with Popclaw before killing her where he recalls what foods she ordered on their first date. He told her that he was impressed by her choice and loved how she wasn’t afraid to be happy. That was the most authentic moment that character had the entire season and that was the only chance we got to see A-Train being truly vulnerable, away from the Compound V, away from the influences of Homelander and Stillwell and Vought.

These “supes” as they’re known, are so scripted and violated and destroyed mentally as they’re constantly reminded by those around them how privileged they are to be apart of this elite group but what they had to do to get there is just way beyond what the average human being would tolerate just to become famous.

I always equated superheroes with the popular kids in high school. These are the kids who naturally excelled at sports, the beautiful young girls who were cheerleaders or chosen homecoming and/or prom queen, the Ivy-league bound kids, etc. These were the kids that I had the least in common with growing up. I was always awkward, shy, overweight, never pretty, plain to look at, unremarkable in every sense of the word. I’ve been bullied, fat-shamed, emotionally tormented, and so on my entire life and it has become something I’m used to. With every hardship I’ve endured and whenever I happen to tell my story to other people they always tell me how they are so impressed by how level-headed, smart, and accomplished I am. They tell me how strong I am to have gone through everything I’ve gone through and never turn to drugs, or alcohol or worse. I take my pain and I turn it into something positive. My weapon of choice has always been my words. I use words to make sense of my feelings. I use words to educate others to be better people. I use words to teach people tolerance, positivity, compassion, empathy, love, and respect.

I’m no superhero. I often end up sympathizing with the villains sometimes. Not that I’d ever condone any of their abhorrent actions. I can just sometimes relate more to their backstories and can understand how these villains did not have the mental fortitude to turn an extremely negative and unfortunate event in their lives and turn it into a positive.

This show, I realize, relies heavily on karma to serve these so-called heroes and heroines their just desserts. From A-Trains broken leg, to Translucents unfortunate demise, to The Deep’s gill violation,  to Queen Maeve’s coming to terms with letting all of those people die on that plane and the bitter loneliness she exhibits on a day to day basis just being her, to Homelander’s desperate need to father a child only to find out that he had a child as a result of his raping Butcher’s wife but only finding out several years later that the child actually survived. All of those cliched colloquialisms apply here: Fate catches up to us all, You get what you deserve, You reap what you sow. You get the point.

This show had raised so many thoughts and questions and I was really impressed from beginning to end. I was kind of dragging my feet starting this series and I rolled my eyes at the mere thought of watching yet another superhero driven series. This concept highly fatigues me and the concept has to be really mind-blowingly good for me to not fall asleep or even forgo watching it altogether. I really liked how the tables were turned and made what we would normally consider the villains as the kind of heroes/anti-heroes of the story. I liked how the superheroes weren’t always perfect, were heavily flawed, and weren’t even good people most of the time. I liked how Starlight was the young ingenue getting into something she thought was so noble and worthy only to be disillusioned and wrecked practically from day one after her sickening encounter with The Deep. We’ve all had moments where we find out that some of our heroes are not good people in real life and how scripted the majority of people whom we admire actually are and how Hollywood lies, and how things are absolutely not always as they seem. Thanks for reading my observations. I’d love to hear about your thoughts on the show. Remember, if you decide to leave a comment, only positive comments will be published, so keep it clean, keep it polite, keep it respectful, folks.

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My new novella, John of Art, is out now and is available for paperback and Kindle ebook on Amazon. It is also available as an ebook wherever ebooks are sold. If you’d like to get a copy of the paperback, just click the picture below and it will lead you to Amazon to purchase your copy of the new novella. Thanks to all of you who have already purchased your copy. I am in the process of making the paperback available through other platforms and my voice over artist is currently working on the audiobook and that will be released in September most likely.  Currently, I’m working on a couple of new things. I am working on possibly doing some book signings. I have just sent out a few inquiries regarding that so I don’t know if that will happen yet but will let you all know if and when that actually occurs. Thanks again and have a great week everyone!

Limited Release of My Latest Novella, John of Art, Available Now on Amazon!

ALL WRITTEN AND ARTWORK ARE THE INTELLECTUAL PROPERTY OF PSG LOPES. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED, 2019.

John of Art, the second novella in the Seasons of Change novellas, is now available on Amazon in paperback or Kindle e-book format. Click on the first picture below of the book cover to get your copy now! $12 paperback/$10 Kindle e-Book

Click this picture below for your copy of John of Art!

ABSOLUTE FINAL BACK BOOK COVER

Back Cover

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Here is the blurb for John of Art:

John of Art, a sequel to A Wynter’s Tale, is the newest novella in The Moonlit Goddess’ Seasons of Change series.
Wynn and Lin are settling into their newly married life in Wister Bay, Maine. When Wynn gets some devastating news about his new fledgling business, he and Lin find themselves in a familiar predicament that brought them together years back. As Wynn tries to re-navigate his life once again, Lin’s business as a psychologist is thriving. Her new client, Simone Soares, comes to Lin seeking coping strategies for her depression and anxiety. The majority of Simone’s troubles stem from her caring for her ailing father, João “John” Soares, who is suffering from advanced dementia. What Simone got instead was a whirlwind of chaos she had not expected. A chance meeting with a mysterious, out of town stranger helps Simone handle her grief, financial hardships, and the origins of her birth. With the help of those around her, Simone learns compassion, empathy, inner strength, and above all else, forgiveness.

For the first time, my new work is now featured in e-book format in other outlets like B&N, iBooks, and anywhere e-Books are sold. Just look me up under any search as PSG Lopes (The Moonlit Goddess Presents: A Seasons of Change Novella: John of Art)  wherever you purchase your e-Books. Paperbacks through new outlets will also be available soon and I’ll make those links available to you all as the author copy of the paperback is approved in the upcoming weeks. I am using a different distributor aside from Amazon this time around in order to make my work more readily available to a broader audience. It’s a lot of fine-tuning and making sure everything is perfect before I release the paperback version through B&N, and other outlets. Lastly, the audiobook will be produced soon and will be coming out in late summer. I will update you all and provide the link for that as well when the time comes. The book has a song which accompanies it and you can listen to that here:

www.themoonlitgoddess.bandcamp.com

Thank you all for continuing to visit my website and supporting my work!

I’ve already got my eye on my next two projects and I’m in the developing stages of both! I’m always thinking ahead!

The Vulnerability of Humanity

blog july 2nd 2019

ALL WRITTEN AND ARTWORK ARE THE INTELLECTUAL PROPERTY OF PSG LOPES. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED, 2019.

People often confuse hardships and moments of vulnerability for weakness and naivete. Some people have a knack for spotting the defenseless people and honing in on them and targeting them as their prey.

When I went through my hardships at the beginning of the year, I became more hyper-vigilant of those who genuinely cared and wanted to help me and those who thrived on my hardships. I’ve developed a saying for myself, “I like my friendships and relationships like I like my crayons–non-toxic.” That’s my motto for 2019. I am staying away from those who do not serve me in a productive and healthy way. There are so many people out there who are hurting and going through their own hardships. That’s the time to help nurture them and raise them up not expend negative emotions to tear them down. You don’t use that knowledge of an individual’s pain as ammunition to hurt or harm them in any way.

When I started my writing line and began publishing my own books, I started really paying attention to the people around me. People started changing the way that they spoke to me. You could clearly tell that some people were actually jealous of me. People started unfollowing me on social media. People started avoiding me when they saw me on the streets and those who I thought were my friends had all forsaken me. The writing journey has certainly not been an easy ride for me, that’s for sure. I consider myself wildly ambitious and if someone who I invite into my creative circle does not exhibit the same drive as I do, they become a liability.

It’s not easy to say no to people or to move on in a different creative direction. People are sensitive. People get hurt. But you have to be mature, and adult and people have to recognize that you have a vision and you work really hard for that vision and you want those around you to share in that enthusiasm without being cruel, hurtful, spiteful, or by saying disparaging words meant to psych you out and discourage you from continuing. I work really hard on all my work. I especially work hard on being original. I also pride myself on being a damn good human being and I respect everyone in my life and I respect their schedules, their struggles, their pain. I recognize that and I am supportive and I would never slight someone for their individual struggles in life. I aim to make every person who leaves my side at the end of the day to feel good about themselves. I’d never make any human being feel less than who they were simply because of what was going on in my own personal life.

Humans are remarkable. We will exhibit moments of sheer pleasure and moments of sheer anguish and we bounce back and we recuperate and we move on and we come full circle and experience sheer pleasure and sheer anguish on and off over and over for the duration of our lives. Despite my hardships this year, I choose to focus on all of the good I’ve done this year. I published my third poetry anthology, my second children’s book, I worked with a lovely woman to get my audiobook done for A Wynter’s Tale, I was featured in two newspaper articles, and in August my second song and my second novella will be released. I also have some other opportunities that I’m waiting to hear about that I’m really excited about and may help get me to the next level of my career. So with every negative experience whether it’s a soured relationship, soured friendship, illness of a loved one, or whatever I may be experiencing, I choose to remember that I’m going through the anguish part of my circle and I will eventually turn around and find the pleasure of my life circle once again. Just be patient. It will come. I just need to ride out the negative wave and I’ll get to where I need to be. And patient I am.

I had a long talk with my mother the other day and she and I agreed that medication for my depression was not a suitable option. She told me that she noticed that my confidence was gone and she saw how I interacted with others and realized that that stemmed from my weight. She agreed that if I lost some weight that would help me regain my confidence which would then ease the depression and anxiety that I am feeling. She bought me three self-help books to help me navigate the next few months of my life. I found one book that will help me creatively, I found one book that will help navigate through my traumas in life, and I found one book that is a diet and exercise regimen for those with depression and anxiety. So that is my summer reading and my self-help project this summer. I am working hard on being the best possible version of myself away from the toxic atmosphere around me. I have learned to stay away from those with nothing nice to say about others because they don’t have the tools to properly navigate the hardships that they’re experiencing. I will not begrudge others for the hate in their hearts because that’s just not who I am. I wish them well and I choose to worry about working on myself and being my best authentic self.  I don’t put myself into situations where I’d harm someone else. I don’t get into toxic relationships where I know the other person does not want me. I don’t fight for friendships that do not serve me in a productive and positive manner. I have nothing but pure-hearted love in my soul and wish only the very best of others and I will always root for them no matter how cruel or how rude, or how mean their words are. I know that with every cruelty, with every sharp lash of their painful words, those people are hurting too and my only wish for them is for them to find their inner peace. I am finding it in my writing and my music and my art and my photography. There are the doers in this world and the dreamers. In 2019, I have finally solidified my future as one of the doers. I am making my dreams come true. Sorry to those who don’t understand or who are jealous or who don’t have the courage yet to follow their dreams. My best advice is if you want something bad enough don’t focus on what I’m doing, worry about making you the best you that you can be. Don’t worry about my accomplishments, worry about how can you improve and make your dreams become a reality. I’ve learned my lesson in life. I know that I’m a good person who opens up to everyone I meet but I also am wary about those who use the words I’ve given them and allowing them to use those words as weapons against me.

My book is on track for August 15th release. My song will be done by then as well. I work really hard on my writing and my music and I work incredibly hard to produce something original, unique, and the words of my writing and the melodies of my songs are unlike anything else out there. Everyone on my team is positive, encouraging, nurturing and loving. These are people who have exhibited real pain in life but still know how to be a friend and work together for a common cause. Those who adhere to deadlines, respect other’s time and work, and will work together to put together some really great and memorable stuff. There’s no room for toxicity. We are all in this together. I love you all. And genuinely wish you all well. I will forever and always cheer you on.

John of Art is the sequel to A Wynter’s Tale. For those of you who want to read the first book before John of Art’s release in August please check out A Wynter’s Tale on paperback, ebook (Kindle), or audiobook in the following links below. Thank you as always for your continued love and support. It always means the world to me.

A Wynter’s Tale Ebook (Kindle edition): https://amzn.to/2xrnHZa

A Wynter’s Tale Paperback: https://amzn.to/2Jh33Ay

A Wynter’s Tale Audiobook: tinyurl.com/y234qddk

 

Here are some promo codes for the audiobook for my UK/US readers/audiobook listeners:

UK:

63YY6XLB44SX2

6SD66HTRRHZ5K

86WWER9THC4UL

US:

2YWGDZFK55E82

3SAWYYYYBSP5U

5M3LUUT8JKEBK

Promo Codes can be redeemed at the following websites:

UK: https://audible.co.uk/acx-promo

US: https://audible.com/acx-promo

 

Podcast: My Mental Health Journey

blog pic june 28th 2019

ALL WRITTEN AND ARTWORK ARE THE INTELLECTUAL PROPERTY OF PSG LOPES. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED, 2019.

Hello, everyone! There is a new podcast up this week! Listen to this week’s podcast “My Mental Health Journey” here: anchor.fm/psg-lopes

This week’s podcast discusses my triumphs and setbacks regarding finding adequate healthcare. I provide tips and techniques that work for me throughout my own struggles with depression and anxiety, why America loves to shove pills down people’s throats, and accepting that not all health care professionals are created equal. I hope that this week’s podcast inspires and helps others who also struggle with depression and anxiety and encourages others to seek out alternative methods of treatment outside of medication. Thanks for listening!

Also, I am on track for the release of my new novella, John of Art, for August 15th, 2019! I am chipping away at edits and will be passing it off soon for editing/beta readers. I have also just released a very rough cut of my song, John of Art, on Bandcamp which you can listen to here: www.themoonlitgoddess.bandcamp.com

I am working with a very good friend of mine to put piano music to the song and alter a few things here and there. I hope that you enjoy what I have so far! The finished novella and song will be fully released on August 15th, 2019. In the meantime, if you’d like to read the prequel to John of Art, A Wynter’s Tale, that is on sale now on Amazon and is available as a paperback, ebook (Kindle edition), and audiobook. You can check this book and my other works here on my Amazon Author Page:

http://www.amazon.com/author/psglopes

I am working hard on my writing and am trying really hard to find paid writing opportunities to help me continue to produce my work. Because of limited funding, I release things as soon as I’m able to financially. By you visiting my blogs, listening to my podcasts, and buying any work on Amazon that all produces revenue for me so I appreciate you all continuing to click on my work and follow up on what’s going on in my life so thanks so much for that!

If interested, I also have a Patreon page. You can view that here: www.patreon.com/themoonlitgoddess

Thanks again for your continued interest in what I do! I appreciate each and every one of you. I wish you all a very blessed and happy weekend!

My Thoughts Moving Forward

blog post 2019 june 25th

ALL WRITTEN AND ARTWORK ARE THE INTELLECTUAL PROPERTY OF PSG LOPES, UNLESS EXPLICITLY EXPRESSED OTHERWISE. FEATURED PHOTO TODAY IS FROM HIDDEN TRANSFORMATIONS COLORING BOOK PUBLISHED BY MINDWARE 2007. ALL RESPECTIVE RIGHTS RESERVED, 2019. 

I realize it has been a hot minute since I have posted anything on my blog. I have been going through some personal issues that I needed to take care of in order to move forward with my writing and other ventures.

As many of my readers are already aware of, I have been a lifelong sufferer of depression and anxiety. I sought help in 2002 right after college but I didn’t stick with the regimen because my doctor ended up dying and I was sick of feeling like utter crap and no one helping me or understanding me that I went rogue and stopped going to therapy and quit the medicine I was taking cold turkey. Until then, I’ve endured many hardships but I’ve had some happy moments mixed in and was able to compartmentalize my depression and anxiety and bounce myself back to my own state of equilibrium and I was able to function in my own way. Yes, the underlying issues still remained but I was able to be a functioning depressed and anxious person for a very long time.

This year, I’ve faced one hardship too many and this was the very first time in my adult life that I found it virtually impossible to bounce back the way that I needed to in order to continue being a productive member of society. I just couldn’t handle things on my own anymore. The very last straw was how I was treated at my old doctor’s office in early May. I snapped and decided that enough was enough. I have been shit on my entire life and I wasn’t going to allow anyone else to speak to me in the way that I was spoken to that day. That was the very last day I was ever going to allow people to speak to me like I was lower than they were. I have accomplished so much in my life, so much more than most around me. I am not nothing. I have value and I deserve to be treated like everyone else. Today’s photo is a coloring book page that I found from a book in 2007. When I first saw the picture I thought it looked like me in my twenties, that’s why I liked it so much. Upon coloring the photo, the picture came to life to me and I wished I was that person in that photo: strong, powerful, beautiful, graceful, and poised, instead of the falling down mess I became in my thirties.

I realized I desperately needed help and the first step to getting that help was seeking out a new primary doctor. Due to the limitations of my insurance, I had to settle for another male doctor. I was very nervous going into the appointment the first time. I was grateful that my mom was able to go with me both times that I went so far. Thanks, mom! I have developed this new mantra based on Adelita’s Way song “Ready for War.” They sing, “I pray for peace but I’m ready for war.” That’s my new mantra. I go into every new situation hoping for a peaceful interaction but secretly my fists are clenched and I’m ready to fight holy hell if I have to to get to a healthy place mentally and physically. I went into my doctor’s appointment, not at all hopeful and waiting for the same spiel, “You’re fat, lose weight, here’s a bunch of prescription, come back in six months.” But what I found, pleasantly surprised me. He just had this positive aura about him right from walking into the room. I just knew instantly that I could trust him. I spoke to him, choking back tears, bravely telling him every single thing that had been holding me back for years and he not only listened, he handed me tissues, he gave me permission to feel how I felt, he gave me permission to relax and just let life happen, and not bear the burdens of the entire world on my shoulder. He is teaching me to tackle one thing at a time and that I can do what I can but I’m not a failure if I can’t do it all in one day. I was so relieved to finally find someone who fucking understands. I waited twenty years to hear those words even though, I really needed that every day my whole damn life.

I am finally getting my life back on track. I did bloodwork and I’m happy to report that I’m a fucking healthy thirty-eight-year-old woman! Fuck the assholes who are so concerned about my weight. I’m metabolically healthy and I’m proud of my body and I don’t need to fit into the standards of society. I go for walks when I can, and I mix good food with the bad so fuck everyone else who has a problem with me. This bitch is fat and she’s most likely staying this way for a while, at least until I get my shit together.

I am going back to therapy, I also made appointments for other doctors like gynecologist, dermatologist, etc. I finally feel like I have control over my life again. Everything was collapsing around me beginning this new years eve with my breakup, my dad nearly dying, and just trying to deal with all of the drama around me. The force field around me that I used to protect myself was weakening and I couldn’t hold on any longer. I was so relieved to unleash all of my heart’s burdens to my doctor. Like Carrie Underwood’s song, “Jesus Take the Wheel,” I’m not a religious woman, but I was so the personification of that sentiment that day. I gave all of my burdens to my doctor and he was more than happy to take them away from me, give me permission to feel, and help me acknowledge that I won’t get the answers that I crave for closure and described my life experiences as a gallery in an art museum and he said that some exhibits I can visit freely pain-free, but some I’m going to have to put a tarp over and walk by and that’s okay. Sometimes things just don’t get resolved no matter how much I grieve or revisit, or self-blame, or torture myself over. Shit happens basically. I needed to hear that more than anyone will ever know. I want to thank that man so much for not only saving my life, but seeing my life as something worth saving. He will never quite understand the immensity of his words that first day. Even his entire staff was helpful and kind and that meant the entire world to me too. So, thank you!

That all helped me put things into perspective and help re-set my mindset for my writing and other future ventures. I am a little behind on my editing of John of Art but I still have the tentative release date for both the song and the book as August 15th. I really want to make sure that this book is absolutely perfect. I don’t have any means of recording the song in a way that is professional so I’m just going to sing it and place it on my Bandcamp account when I’m releasing the book on the same day and will be sure to post links for both. If you noticed my Amazon Author Page, I did release the song lyrics already to the
John of Art song. It’s available for 99 cents for the Kindle, if anyone is interested in supporting me and getting a glimpse of song lyrics, I’d appreciate your support and feedback. You can access this and my other works on my Amazon Author Page here: amazon.com/author/psglopes

I found a wonderful resource in Amanda Palmer’s book, The Art of Asking: How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Let People Help. This book opened my eyes for a lot of reasons. I always felt like a loser asking people for donations for my work. I first utilized crowdfunding in 2014 when I was hoping to finish my phd. I ran out of funding for the oral defense and sought out the help of others. I will never forget my cousin, Julie, gave me one hundred dollars. I felt so touched by this gesture. I was not accustomed to having family believe in me and when she told me that she believed in me that moment changed me forever. Even though I didn’t meet my goal for the crowdfunding, I never forgot her kindness and I always promised myself to return the favor somehow someday but I never was in a position to do so. I was always struggling and coming up for air my whole life. But I want her to know that I will never forget that one moment of pure kindness. That moment taught me so much. It taught me that there are still amazing people out there. It taught me that there’s no shame in asking for help when you’ve exhausted all your other options. I’ve learned that it’s not being pathetic or foolish reaching out and asking for others’ help. I have just befriended an individual who lives in the deep south and he told me that in that area they are big on being neighborly and that’s what’s missing in the area in which I live, that long-lost concept of neighbors helping out neighbors.

I no longer feel foolish in asking for help when I need it. I feel that what I’m doing is powerful and can help a lot of people and I wish to continue fighting for my work. If others come along and help I’ll always be greatly appreciative but I’m no longer going to see it as modern day panhandling. Especially in the arts where people have to fight tooth and nail to keep art alive nowadays. Every bit of help counts and matters, as long as we work together to keep art thriving and alive.

On that note, I do have a Patreon account mostly for professional editing services and to produce my song professionally. If you are interested in taking a look you’ll find that page here: www.patreon.com/themoonlitgoddess

I thank you all as always for coming back and checking up on me and what I’ve got going on in my life. I hope that my words prove helpful and encourages others to seek help if they need it. What I’ve learned from my ordeal is you have to be persistent and not give up after the first try. You have to shout louder and louder each time until someone finally hears you. There are people out there who will listen. I wish you all a productive and fruitful week full of laughter, love, hope, and friendship. Let us continue to be good to one another and lift each other up when things are not going well in our lives. Judgment has no place at my dinner table.

The Rollercoaster Ride

blog pic june 13th 2019

ALL WRITTEN AND ARTWORK ARE THE INTELLECTUAL PROPERTY OF PSG LOPES. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.

My depression and anxiety are very much cyclical. There are weeks where I feel like I can conquer the world and am so productive and feel so positive and feel that the world is my oyster and I am this close to finding my pearl. Then there are the bad weeks, like this week, where all I can do is cry over my laptop worried about money, about my health, about my future. I was up all night with the Golden Girls in the background worried and frightful of what tomorrow will bring for me.

I sit and punish myself thinking of every negative thought that I can remember. I want so much to block out the negativity and just keep going but they are so much stronger than I am some days. All I can hear are the voices of the people who gave up on me and who no longer love me. All I can focus on are the people no longer in my life and how I continually get punished for their actions.

There are some days that I want to do it all. I want to show you all that I’m better than this, that I am worth so much more. But then there’s today where I can barely breathe and I just want to spend my energy surviving instead of the constant fear and uncertainty of my future. I have no one but myself. And that’s terrifying to admit. I am knee-deep in month six without my fiance and I wish I could say that I’m kicking ass and taking names but I am not. I am more broken today than ever before. I write this to you with tears streaming down my cheeks alone and afraid and unloved and broken and I don’t know how I have gotten myself to this point in my life. I don’t understand why I’m so different from everyone else. I don’t understand why I can’t just blend in with everyone else. Why can’t I just be like everyone else? I don’t understand why my struggles seem to compound themselves daily. Why the pains in my stomach worsened. Why I feel so out of control and powerless that I just feel like locking myself in my room all day instead of facing the stares of disappointment from those around me. Instead of listening to the fake good lucks around me of those who just don’t fucking get it.

I work really hard on my writing and artwork and music every day. It’s hard being so isolated from everyone on a daily basis. I’m at the point in my life where “cheer up” is not only ineffective but insulting. The “things will get better” are so forced that even I don’t believe you anymore. “We’ll figure something out,” although well-meaning, just isn’t palpable enough a thought to give me any cause for hope.

When I had my nervous breakdown at twenty-one years old, I went to therapy and was on medication but the therapist and psychiatrist just weren’t getting it. They heard me complain and just pushed more medicines on me. Nobody understands and nobody wants to talk and nobody wants to listen. I remember going one day to therapy in hopes that if I just asserted myself that they’d finally hear me and see how I was struggling but I was just dismissed and sent to the psychiatrist to re-evaluate my medicine. How is this healthcare? And how is this taking care of those who are struggling? I may not be bleeding outwardly but I’m bleeding internally and no one can see it or if they do, they just turn a blind eye to it. It’s there for me every day. That feeling of hopelessness, the burden of carrying failure after failure, the fighting and trying so hard every day to be somebody, yet nobody listens. Nobody fucking listens. Those who I thought would be there for me until the end, have all left and abandoned me. A constant theme in my life.

I’m not suicidal, I’m fucking sad. I’m fucking sad about a lot of things. I’m allowed to be sad sometimes. But like always, I’ll pick myself up and keep trying. Just not today.

Bandcamp: www.themoonlitgoddess.bandcamp.com

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Dark Musings Poetry Anthology: Volume 2: The Storm Over Vermillion Fields–My Most Wildly Misunderstood Piece To Date

Vol 2 final front cover

ALL WRITTEN AND ARTWORK ARE THE INTELLECTUAL PROPERTY OF PSG LOPES. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED, 2019. 

My second poetry anthology book, Dark Musings Poetry Anthology: Volume 2: The Storm Over Vermillion Fields was an ambitious piece. The concept of  The Storm Over Vermillion Fields was to create an epic poem. I used John Milton’s Paradise Lost as inspiration in terms of structure. It certainly wasn’t as long as Paradise Lost but I learned a lot about epic poems and how to write one and found this piece to be inspirational and useful in terms of how I wanted my epic poem to look. I did countless research on the structure and how exactly an epic poem should be written, what its goal and objective were and how to ensure that it came across in a meaningful way to my readers.

This piece differed from Volume 1 in many ways. Where Volume 1 featured thirty poems back to back, Volume 2 had the highlight major epic poem The Storm Over Vermillion Fields and then featured short stories, poetry, and other free writes throughout the remainder of the book. The book was fully illustrated with my own photography and digital art. This was also the first book that I created that was more costly because of its rich and colorful content. The printing process is costly in itself and therefore the price is rather high for such work.

There was also a lot of misconception as far as the title was concerned. The word “vermillion” and my choice of spelling happened to be controversial to some. People see that there’s an extra “L” and the Grammar Nazi’s have a shit fit. But the extra “L” was indeed intentional. The word “vermilion” is a color–a reddish hue. Now, I liked the word itself because vermilion was the color red and the epic poem does include an epic battle, so the imagery of seeing a storm in a field full of red was very powerful to me. But adding that extra “L” had more meaning that many people understood. The root word “ver” means truth in Latin. Million broken apart “milli” meaning thousand or you can take the full value of “million.” So, I put together the word vermillion to mean “a thousand truths.” The title The Storm Over Vermillion Fields really was supposed to mean The Storm Over the Fields of a Thousand Truths. But that doesn’t quite have the same ring to it, now does it?

There is so much hidden meaning in this piece wrapped in imagery and colorful language and to the naked eye, the wording can be very difficult to interpret. Now, I warned you all in yesterday’s blog that poetry can indeed serve as a hidden, secret language between the author and the piece she is writing. And this piece was no different.

The story may appear cliche in nature but so many people out there still suffer the same sad woeful tale and it is a story meant repeating.

The tale starts with a young woman who is imprisoned by her mother and sister. They value vanity and money over self-worth and have discarded the poor young woman and she was left to starve and die. Three princes came to their kingdom in hopes of marrying the young woman’s sister. To the naked eye, the woman was beautiful and appeared to come from good stock; however, she was rotten inside and was devoid of any depth or real human emotion. Her younger sister lonely in her prison cell sang beautiful songs which transformed her inner beauty into an outward beauty making any male suitor she met instantly fall in love with her. The mother and sister concocted a plan to make sure that her song was never heard from any of the suitors. One night the young woman cried out to the gods begging for her release and to find true happiness and finally upon battle after battle the right suitor found her and freed her, imprisoning the mother and sister instead and they both lived on to be free and happy.

I wrote this piece in 2017 and my thoughts have changed a lot since writing this piece. I had just met my ex-fiance and still had that Prince Charming/happily ever after complex that I firmly believed in. Upon our breakup this year, I realized that yes I still feel like I need saving but the only person who can save me from my own misery is myself. I don’t need anyone to rescue me. The key to my salvation and to my freedom is fulfilling each goal I have for myself. I have to keep writing and growing as an artist. I have a responsibility, I feel, at least, to reach out to others who share similar stories as I do and make them aware that they are not alone. I am reminded of the Stabbing Westward song Save yourself: “I cannot save you, I can’t even save myself, So just save yourself.” So save myself, I shall.

I harbor a lot of anger, resentment, and bitterness over everything that has happened to me in my life. As I got older, I realized that there are very real villains out there and just because I am a nice person that does not mean that all people out there are the same as me. There are cruel people, people who may not demonstrate violence in the traditional sense that we are accustomed seeing but instead their brand of terror comes in the form of abusive language, actions, and screaming and yelling. I am saddened and sickened daily knowing that this is my world and a world that I must live with on a daily basis. I sometimes want to give up on my life and wonder if dying would help ease my suffering. The emotional pain becomes much too much to handle at times and I often feel that I am not strong enough to carry my burdens each day. I don’t have anyone else. All I have is myself. No one else gets what I go through. And even with me explaining it over and over most will never quite get it. I also wanted so much to feel and be perceived as normal in the eyes of society but I never was normal. I was always different. I always dressed differently, acted differently, thought differently and I always stood out like a sore thumb. The isolation became crippling but I know of no other way. No one wants to be near someone who questions things and who doesn’t accept the way things are and is always challenging and demanding change. These are all feelings I had deep within me when writing this piece. I still feel this way even today.

I still really love this volume of my poetry anthologies. This sophomore effort really challenged me as a writer, as an artist, and as an individual. The epic poem, other poems, lyrics, and short stories featured delved deep into my psyche. I even re-visited old poetry that I found from when I was a teenager and incorporated some in this anthology as well. I always loved re-visiting my old writing. I enjoy seeing my evolutionary self and even though I’ve changed dramatically in my adult years, the general theme of my life remains intact: That desperate need to feel understood and loved by others, the crippling loneliness and depression, an ache for something else out there that I have yet to find. At thirty-eight years of age.,I still have yet to find what exactly it is that I am looking for. Maybe someday I will find it.

Thanks for your continued support and for following my blog daily!

You can find this and all of  my other works on my Amazon Author Page: amazon.com/author/psglopes.

VISIT MY PATREON PAGE HERE: THE MOONLIT GODDESS PATREON PAGE

Nothingness

blog post may 7 2019

ALL WRITTEN AND ARTWORK ARE THE INTELLECTUAL PROPERTY OF PSG LOPES. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED, 2019.

2019 has proven to dole out immensely painful lessons one after the other. I have been tested in ways that surely have surpassed even Job. I just keep getting sucker punched at every turn and it seems to only get worse.

The tally so far this year: Breaking up with my fiance on New Years Eve, getting into a minor fender bender because I was a dollar short (yep, you read that right!) to pay my bills and went to the bank to make a deposit and a dumb drunk old lady hit my car from behind, my dad and mom getting the flu, dad being sent to the hospital with pneumonia and we all thought he was going to die, dad coming home bed bound, not wanting to eat and being completely without speech, the emotional toll it took watching my dad in that near catatonic state until many weeks later he finally stabilized and is feeling much better thankfully, the first newspaper article of the year done on one of my books that was corroded with mistakes due to a bad journalist who just didn’t care to take accurate notes of our interview, getting a $45 ticket for parking in an area that had no parking meter even though the ticket said it had expired (I swear I looked all over before parking, there was no parking meter!), being mocked and shamed and embarrassed at my old doctor’s office because I’m poor and wanted hearing aids for myself, and now for the clincher… accidentally saving my new novella under a file with the same name and losing 55 pages worth of progress. I am feeling a bit numb today. I’m at a real loss of what to say, how to feel, I just don’t understand the lessons I’m supposed to be learning through all of these hardships?

There’s only so much resilience, so many fake smiles, so many positive motivational quotes, so many meaningless platitudes spewed by those around me that can keep me going. Yes, I’ve tried numerous things to retrieve the files and so did both my brothers, sister, and her friend.

What is so sad is that yesterday was such a good day for me mentally. I don’t get many of those days anymore. I’m so riddled with anxiety and depression that that consumes my mind 99% of the time. I finally had the courage to sit down and spent hours working on the novella and was so proud of how it was shaping up. I have a lot of ideas jotted into notebooks but they’re all an incoherent mess. I was able to decipher my notes, craft beautifully lyrical sentences that were so moving and magical. I was so impressed with how my story was taking shape. I have an author word wall with new words that I want to use for my next projects and I was able to craftily weave all twelve words into my work seamlessly. It was an impressive feat. Then just with one click of a button that all disappeared. I spent hours watching youtube videos but it was all the same. There was no recoverable file to be found. The file I need is long gone.

I just don’t have it in me to re-do all that mess again. What if that same creative spark just doesn’t happen again? I’ve been writing essentially my whole life, I have worked on my bachelors, masters, and doctorate, and have been writing professionally since 2016. I have written so many papers, so many poems, so many short stories, etc. I have never made this mistake before. I have always saved in quadruplicate. I was always so careful how I saved my work and then this one minute, sixty seconds, just completely blew up my world. I just laid in bed for hours last night, tears filling my eyes, wondering who I was in another life that causes me to constantly endure this much bad luck in one lifetime? I just don’t understand it. Even my mother was telling me I should go to a shaman or a spiritualist to get this curse lifted from me. Whatever force is out there is preventing me from being fulfilled and happy. I know that sounds so hokey but what else could it be when one is constantly being plagued by horrible misfortune?

I’m not terribly dramatic in saying things like I don’t want to live anymore or anything to that extreme, but my will to live and my determination to keep going in life is certainly dwindling. I don’t have much in this sad little life of mine. I take the greatest pride in my writing. It truly is the very last joy I have on this godforsaken planet of ours. Can’t I just experience one win? Just one? Why do I always have to learn these ridiculous life lessons? It’s too much sometimes. I don’t have much left in me. I need a win. Just one. To even up the playing field a bit. I can’t just be this riddled with bad luck without being blessed with at least one good fortunate event. Life can’t be that cruel, can it?

My Radical Conclusion

Blog May 2, 2019

ALL WRITTEN AND ARTWORK ARE THE INTELLECTUAL PROPERTY OF PSG LOPES. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED, 2019.

I am still pretty much fuming over yesterday’s ridiculousness over the embarrassment I exhibited in the doctor’s office. But instead of being negative about it, I decided to be productive and spent the remainder of the day searching for a new primary care physician (female this time, and a real doctor not these cute P.A.’s or whatever bullshit scam this country is peddling upon its citizens in lieu of legitimate healthcare). I also found a reputable ENT relatively nearby so that I am able to officially get some sort of hearing aid device for myself. I am sick and tired of being treated like a second class citizen. And I shouldn’t have to explain why I decided to start taking better care of myself. I am doing so because I fucking want to that’s why!

I was born in America. I have worked incredibly hard over the years just like everyone else. My means for someday obtaining financial freedom may be unconventional and not understood by those who were brainwashed into thinking that having someone else signing your paycheck is the only way to be respected and valued in the community. I am fiercely ambitious and you may consider me crazy but I will not stop fighting for a better life, for a better world, and my way of doing that is through my writing and art. This year, I feel that I have seamlessly transitioned from hobby writer to career writer and even though I’m not rolling in the dough, I have value, I am respected in my field, and I do deserve the same consideration and care as everyone else on the planet.

I read this amazing quote by Audre Lorde today. She once said, “Caring for myself is not self-indulgence, it is self-preservation, and that is an act of political warfare.” That’s the mantra I am currently adopting. I’m not going to let anyone guilt me into thinking that I’m not worth proper healthcare and I don’t have to justify why I’m seeking assistance in getting hearing aids, or bloodwork, or any other thing that will ensure that I remain healthy and mentally happy and at peace.

For years, I’ve allowed people to bring me down, to mock me, to make me feel inferior. But what have those people truly accomplished in their lives? Anyone can get married and/or divorced, have a slew of unruly kids, settle for a nine to five job making someone else richer, buy a home, a car and buy other materialistic bullshit that they just don’t need. I once prescribed to that notion. I felt hollow, empty for not being like everyone else. I tried the whole relationship thing. I was fed notions of possibly having a happily ever after, living in my own home, and all that. But I realized happiness is found from within and I feel truly fulfilled and free when I’m writing. I feel validated and purposeful and I know that my message is a strong one and others need to hear this message too so that we can all break these damaging so-called social norms that make people believe they need to achieve certain things and reach certain goals in order to make them feel whole. Granted, one may feel fulfilled with the lives that they currently have. I’m not arguing that my way is better than anyone else’s. My argument here is to respect that there is more than one way to fry an egg. Happiness is individualized. My happiness differs from yours. And vice-versa. I realize I give too much clout to others and their opinions. But it makes me fucking furious thinking there are people out there who appear villainous and actually thrive on seeing people fail and falling flat on their faces. This rage fires deep within me and I will not stop until I am recognized for my positive contributions to society.

I noticed right away since I was a little girl that I was not like everyone else. My first bra was a neon green disaster. I wore neon pink bicycle shorts and a playboy t-shirt hand-me-down from my older brother. My hair cuts were never fashionable and always uneven. I always got dirty from doing somersaults in the park falling into piles of geese-poop horribly embarrassing family and friends. I have fallen down concrete steps, knees bleeding profusely, while my dad was part of a Portugal day festival in the city hall where I grew up totally shaming my family and godparents. I have fallen down stairs more often than not, that was a major theme in my childhood. I have fallen after attempting to climb a retaining wall in fear of missing the school bus as my sister watched in horror from the school bus in front of all of her friends. I am shy, I am weird, I don’t smell the greatest all the time, I cry a lot and can’t control my emotions and sometimes appear somewhat of a crazy person when I am horribly triggered by cruel and mean-spirited people. I’m outspoken and feisty and have this unusual blend of soft-heartedness and lion-heartedness that often fight together until they harmoniously decide to get along and help me be the productive person that I am today.

I say and do weird things making others uncomfortable. I curse like a sailor on leave, I burp, I fart, I eat with my elbows on the table, I am comfortable talking about my bowel movements in front of family at the dinner table, I laugh at fart jokes and enjoy potty humor, and I wear dresses with stains on them that are not ironed and have cat fur all over them. My hair is in knots, my mother and sister forced me to dye my hair because it had ten-inch gray roots and they bought me hair dye from the supermarket so that I’d look decent for my latest newspaper interview. I may look like I have it all put together in my profile picture, but I’m a wild, feral, hot mess and I have been this way since the day I popped out of my mom’s vagina.

I say and do awkward shit, I can count the number of friends I have on one finger, I eat noisily and fast, I enjoy Mexican food and ice cold root beer and I am done apologizing for who I am.

For those who question why I dress well and have nice boots even though I don’t currently make a lot of money with my writing, don’t realize that my clothes are either donated to me by my mom since we are the same size, or clothes I have purchased years ago when I was teaching. I am not fussy about clothes and just wear old stuff that I take care of because I’m not a behemoth beast. I also notoriously hate wearing shoes and I only own 5 pairs of shoes. I own flip flops to wear around the house, sneakers to go walking in outdoors, my very old Doc Martens flowery boots which may look nice on the outside but smell like your grandma’s crotch on the inside from years of wear, my sandals for the summer that are on their last leg and are about to bust apart at the straps, and my winter boots to ward against ice and snow. I am sick of justifying who I am to others who lack any sort of emotional intelligence or even general intelligence. The amount of willfully ignorant people around me are astounding and no amount of education can create the level of self-awareness and common sense people need to really pay attention to the things that really matter around us.

To the person who stole my quarter bug juice at snack time consecutively every day for 180 school days in Kindergarten and I never said a thing to stop her, to the kid who spat in my face with a mouth full of ham and mayo every day at lunch consecutively every day for 180 days in 1st grade and I never said a thing to stop him, to the little bitch who lied and told the teacher I threw her down the stairs during dismissal when I was nowhere near her in line and I never defended myself, to the teacher who shamed me when I didn’t understand long division showing the class my paper with a zero on it trying to shame me into somehow magically passing not realizing it wasn’t because I wasn’t studying, it was because I just didn’t understand what to do and she did a lousy job teaching me, who will also never know that I got straight A’s in math from senior year in high school all throughout my college career including bachelors, masters, and doctorate years, to the bullies who called me fat and have compared me to every fat actress out there like that is some sort of insult when all of those so-called “fat actresses” are the people whom I admire the most in Hollywood, to the student who called me an idiot who provided the final straw on my last day of substitute teaching and made me finally realize that it was time to move on and taught me that I deserved so much more than the bullshit I was being served, to all of my abusers and oppressors of all forms who have created this neurotic, anxious, and often, depressed individual, I will continue to fight not for you, not because of you, but in spite of you and your patheticness. I continue to write in spite of you. I pour my emotions on this page in spite of you. To send a message to the world, who so desperately needs to hear it that whatever someone does and whatever their circumstances are, happens to be none of anyone’s business but their own, and what works for one person does not work for all. Everyone is on the same team and we are all battling the same villains. Instead of turning on each other and being cruel and meanspirited, reach your hand out to heal, not to destroy. Because you don’t know what is going on in another person’s mind. You’ll never know. I’ll leave you all with another one of my all-time favorite quotes from R.J. Palacio’s marvelous book, Wonder, “When given the choice between being right and being kind, choose kind.” Believe me. It makes all the difference!

By the way, I chose today’s photo because it looked like the middle flowers were flipping the bird. It seemed apropos given today’s topic. Alright, NOW I will choose kind! 🙂

(Of course, I appreciate all of my readers and followers but I wanted to give a shout out to one new follower in particular who gave me props for yesterday’s blog–My message to you is to always keep fighting for what truly matters in life and never let anyone tell you no!)

 

The Healthcare System is Failing Us All

may 1 2019_blog

ALL WRITTEN AND ARTWORK ARE THE INTELLECTUAL PROPERTY OF PSG LOPES. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED, 2019.

For many who truly know me, understand that I have not had the easiest life. I have endured several traumas in my life and as a result, I have been a lifelong sufferer of depression and anxiety. It has always been difficult for me to muster up the courage to go to any doctor and I usually only go during emergencies when I have an infection or bronchitis or anything like that. My anxiety is quite severe and I often have to coach myself to go and it takes me a few days of mental preparation unless it’s an absolute emergency that I can finally concede and buckle down and make the appointment.

I have never been fond of doctors. Every time I  go to the doctor it’s always the same thing, “you’re fat and you need to lose weight” and they’re always trying to pump me full of pills. Doctors have become pill pushers and develop creative ways of keeping patients coming back so they can keep siphoning people’s insurances. Doctors also want it easy for them too. They’re not interested in helping patients when there’s an actual problem that’s easy to fix for the patients.

After all of the things that have happened throughout my life, I have developed quite a complex. I am impossibly shy, I lack any sort of self-confidence, and for me to actually develop the courage to go to the doctor, those who know me well, realize how huge that is.

The other day I noticed that my town opened up a new hearing aid store. I was so impressed by my sister’s hearing aids (she went to a much fancier place because she has decent insurance), that I mustered up some courage to actually make the appointment and go get my hearing tested. I have been hard of hearing my whole life and that has been such a huge burden I have been carrying since I was a little girl. I remember being tested several times as a kid and my parents were told that I needed hearing aids but I never got them because my parents could never afford them for me.

The test was bittersweet. It indeed confirmed that I needed hearing aids and that I could get a reasonable pair with the crappy insurance I have. I actually got emotional during the test because I remembered the same words they spoke during the verbal part of the hearing test from when I had the same test done as a kid. When I heard the words “hotdog” and “baseball” I immediately started crying because I remembered what it felt like being a kid and being told I needed hearing aids and also being told I could not afford them. It was heartbreaking for me for so many reasons. But going to that hearing aid place I finally felt hope, which I don’t allow myself to feel very often because it’s always a terrible letdown. Today was no different.

Being hearing impaired always has been a source of contention for me my entire life. Since my parents could never afford them for me, I basically lived my entire life as if I was submerged in water. I learned to read lips and basically “faked it til I made it.” If I didn’t understand someone when they spoke to me I would ask them to repeat once, maybe twice, and by the third time, I’d just laugh awkwardly as if the person made a joke and would just awkwardly walk away. This became the norm for me, a coping mechanism. I avoid the telephone at all costs. I don’t like to socialize because I’m too embarrassed to ask people to repeat themselves over and over again. It became such a huge complex of mine that I consider myself somewhat of a recluse. I just prefer solitude most of the times because I have developed such a fear of being mocked, shamed, or embarrassed because of my hearing loss amongst my other shortcomings– real or perceived.

When I got colds, my hearing would be even more severely limited. I remember one time I had gone to school when I was fifteen years old and gave my English teacher a doctors note asking that I not be called upon to read aloud in class because I was profoundly hard of hearing due to my cold. I was essentially deaf that day. I heard nothing. It was like life was completely muted and I was living in a world that lacked any sort of depth in terms of sounds. My English teacher, being a nasty bitch, of course, had to call on me. I had no idea she was speaking to me and I had my head down pretending to follow along with what the class was reading. One of my classmates happened to shake my sleeve to get my attention and told me that I was being asked to read. Not knowing where we left off, I just randomly started reading any passage. I looked around and everyone was visibly laughing at me. My teacher finally showed me mercy and told me to stop reading. It was one of the worst experiences of my life. And one that I still carry with me to this day.

This was the norm in my life. Constantly being mocked and shamed. The shy, nice girl always getting shit on by the world and today was no different.

I went to my primary care provider to ask for a prescription for hearing aids because that was the only stipulation from the hearing aid place that I needed the prescription. When I made the appointment on Monday, the doctor’s office never told me that they could not write me such a prescription and that I had to go to an ENT in order to get the prescription I needed. I wouldn’t have cared about this bit of news in the least, except for that fact that my doctor dragged me into the office unnecessarily when the receptionist could have told me right away that he did not write prescriptions for that. To make matters worse and to add insult to injury, his assistant, who looked like she belonged in a Britney Spears video, mind you, told me that I needed routine bloodwork and to continue taking medicine that I was never prescribed and to come back routinely to be checked up periodically. I laughed at the little girl’s face and said that I only go there when I have a cold but thanks anyway and took my paperwork and left. I had informed the hearing aid place of the situation and they had tried calling on my behalf but also failed to get anywhere with the doctor’s office as well.

I was so enraged by how horrifically I was treated from the very moment I walked into the office. Because I have such shitty insurance I am always treated horribly whenever I am in need of medical attention. I am always asked questions that no one would dare ask the elderly or a man, for that matter. People also question the clothes that I wear as well which is so beyond rude and don’t realize that the majority of what I wear is donated to me and I do take immaculate care of my clothes so they are always in good shape. I also live at home, so yes I am well taken care of in that regard. Even though I don’t have the typical 9 to 5 job with steady pay and traditional insurance that by no means makes me lazy, and many don’t realize just how much I bust my ass every single day doing so many things not just for my own business but for my family as well.

After my despicable treatment, I ran home and immediately signed up for a different primary care doctor. I deserve much better and I also deserve a female doctor and not that crusty old man that keeps trying to get me to use a sleep apnea machine or pump me full of pills. Instead of shoving pills, why not sit down and talk to your patients? Get to know them, know their struggles, and teach them ways of fixing their problems, not simply trying to shove pills down our throats and make people think they can’t live without them. Granted, obviously, people out there do need everyday care and rely on medications in order to continue living, I’m not referring to those individuals.

But this guy doesn’t even know any of my background because he never took the time to ask. He doesn’t know I have depression and anxiety and that I was treated by my old doctor before she passed away in my 20s and I never found anyone after that to help treat my condition nor got the courage to find someone who was as good as she was. He doesn’t understand that I’m an emotional eater and I eat myself to death because I’m so fucking miserable over my situation. Of course, I hate being poor, of course, I hate being fat, of course, I’ve tried so many fucking times to find paying jobs. And I, PSG Lopes, don’t need you or anyone else to validate my existence.

I’ve learned how to live my life in a way that’s just good enough to get by without the help of others who lack empathy and sympathy for myself and my situation. I know nobody will help me, I know nobody will listen. Everytime I try to open up and develop the courage to go out there and try to fix something wrong with myself I’m always horrifically embarrassed and that really sets me back months. I can literally spend a lifetime recalling those few moments beating myself over what happened and I will constantly find new and creative ways to completely hate myself. So if that guy accomplished anything today, it was making me feel even shittier and making me feel like more of a loser than I always do anyhow. So thanks for that, dipshit. I hope you choke to the death of the food you buy with the money you stole from me today!

I ended up finding a new doctor and making an appointment with an ENT that actually accepted my insurance but it will take a few months but I am determined to not let pieces of shit like that legalized drug pusher and his back up dancer assistant to make me feel inadequate. He and his playboy bunny assistant can go eat a bunch of dicks for lunch.

Despite all of my shortcomings, I was still able to put myself through college and I worked on my bachelors, masters, and doctorate. I worked since I was eighteen years old and have held several jobs over the years. Sadly; however, I was never able to find a lasting full-time position in the education field. I was a substitute teacher for over fifteen years and have worked in several districts and have taught all grades and all disciplines over the years. Whether I was flat out fired, laid off, or I’d quit, I realized I was stuck in a vicious cycle and I couldn’t continue on this way. My last teaching position, which I actually enjoyed and did exceptionally well at that year, I was laid off from due to lack of funding for the following school year. Realizing that I couldn’t keep going backwards in life and couldn’t face going back to substitute teaching yet again being laid off prompted me to leave education once and for all and that’s when I decided to create The Moonlit Goddess Writing Line and become a full-time writer. Aside from my writing, I am also one of the full-time caregivers of my father who has been suffering from advanced dementia for the past six years. Now because of all of this together, I realize I don’t make much money so my insurance is god awful.

People hear that I’m a writer and that I work remotely from home and they come with all sorts of conclusions about it. They assume I’m lazy, that I don’t want to work, and all of these other silly assumptions that couldn’t be further from the truth. I just happen to have a vision, I am ambitious, my degrees are in business administration and I hope to someday expand my writing line to a small publishing company. I am working hard every day and engaging in many opportunities to help me get there. I am nothing but proud of my accomplishments to date and I have nothing to be ashamed about but yet I still feel compelled to explain myself in order to get the message across that this is my chosen path and I will not allow anyone to mistreat me or disrespect me in any way, shape, or form.

To date, I have won an award for my short story “Breath of Freedom,” I have self-published eight pieces of work: Dark Musings Poetry Anthologies: Volumes 1 (1st and 2nd editions), 2 (which features my award-winning short story “Breath of Freedom”, and 3, two children’s books: My Papa and Me: A Children’s Book About Our Journey With Dementia and Little Stan’s Lucky Day, a novella: A Wynter’s Tale, and my single, “In Recovery.” My novella was just made into an audiobook. I have been featured in two newspaper articles this year. And I am nowhere near done with my ambitions for this year! Every artist and writer goes through a rough patch in the beginning as they begin to build their portfolio and start networking with individuals. Just because I’m not loaded doesn’t make what I do any less meaningful or important and I am incredibly fortunate enough to have a family who understands me and takes care of me as I pursue my dreams.

My father’s healthcare is not that much better. He is also treated like shit within the healthcare system and that infuriates me further because that man did nothing but work his entire adult life consistently putting money towards Medicare for others over the years and when it’s finally his turn to get people to help him he is denied or it takes months to see any progress. He needed a walker, it was denied. My mother ended up buying one out of her own pocket. He needed a wheelchair, it took forever and by the time we got one he was basically bedridden. The diapers, the wipes, the toiletries, the medicines, everything that my dad needs to ensure he is cared for properly all costs money and insurance doesn’t pay for any of that except for a portion of the medicines. The insurance won’t cover a home health aide past a certain amount of time and that too my mother pays out of pocket. We are lucky to have a nurse practitioner come and visit him once a month. The second the insurance stopped covering it, the social worker stopped accepting our calls. The system is corrupt and only the rich get the help that everyone should be entitled to get.

My family has basically always been blue collar our whole lives but we all worked hard and all deserve the same amount of respect. We deserve to be treated with dignity and equally despite our socioeconomic differences. Don’t judge a book by their cover. You don’t know what everyone’s story is. You don’t know what burdens everyone carries. Before you say, “that woman has nice boots, I wonder how she can pay for them if she’s not making any money!” My boots were bought with my own money when I was working as a full-time teacher. The things I have I keep and take very good care of them. People have this antiquated image of poverty but it really has many faces. I am lucky to have a mother and sister who have always been there for me through my hardest times in life. The things I can’t pay for, they help out. What I do in return is I drive everyone around to their appointments, I run all errands for the household, I help with gardening, feeding all of the animals my family takes care, taking care of dad’s daily needs, and so much more along with all of my own writing responsibilities whether it’s my passion projects or freelance work that I’m paid to do. So, call me fat and lazy all you like. Everyone has a purpose on this earth and I know mine and I don’t feel sorry or guilty for anything because I go to bed with my body in bits with all the physical work I do for my family day in and day out. I’m invaluable and I do have worth and I do contribute positively and I don’t need to be shamed, embarrassed, or discriminated against because of a lack of empathy or understanding from others.