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A Lonely Life

Growing up as an only child I found ways to entertain myself. As I got into school I always found it hard to fit in. Yeah I had friends, but I would rarely be invited/included in things. As a 24 year old now I really want to make new friends but find that I am often too socially anxious to do so. And making new friends takes a lot of energy. I only have three best friends which are 2 hours away, my boyfriend is an hour and a half away. It makes me feel like kind of a loser when my parents ask every weekend if I have plans and I say no. But hey, nothing beats a weekend curled up with a good book.

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Always looking for reasons to stay alive and hopeful

I barely leave the house, when I do, it’s during my runs. Sometimes I feel like I’m loosing my mind staying in this house. I feel like I can’t breathe, I’m stuck, I’m falling 🥲… I’m job hunting so I don’t have enough money to take myself out for lunch or whatever. I don’t have friends to talk to or meet.

It incredibly lonely. Today I went out for dinner with my family, I thought I’d be happy to be outside, I tried so hard to feel okay but I just couldn’t be in the moment to appreciate what was happening. Have you ever been in a situation/environment where you thought it could kind of heal your mental struggles but only to feel numb.

Reminds me of one time I was so depressed, I was loosing my mind. I decided to take myself to the movies just to get out of that headspace only to come out even more depressed. I’m tired of trying to stay happy, hopeful… it’s tiring.

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3 Young Adult Books That Have Burn Survivors

To survive a fire can be traumatic and can also feel very lonely. Here are three YA books that focus on burn survivors:

1.”Scars Like Wings” by Erin Stewart

Ava Lee has lost everything there is to lose: Her parents. Her best friend. Her home. Even her face. She doesn't need a mirror to know what she looks like--she can see her reflection in the eyes of everyone around her. A year after the fire that destroyed her world, her aunt and uncle have decided she should go back to high school. Be "normal" again. Whatever that is. Ava knows better. There is no normal for someone like her. And forget making friends—no one wants to be seen with the Burned Girl, now or ever. But when Ava meets a fellow survivor named Piper, she begins to feel like maybe she doesn't have to face the nightmare alone. Sarcastic and blunt, Piper isn't afraid to push Ava out of her comfort zone. Piper introduces Ava to Asad, a boy who loves theater just as much as she does, and slowly, Ava tries to create a life again. Yet Piper is fighting her own battle, and soon Ava must decide if she's going to fade back into her scars . . . or let the people by her side help her fly.

2.”Faceless” by Alyssa Sheinmel

When Maisie Winters wakes up, she’s in the hospital. The last thing she remembers is running through the hills of her neighborhood one misty morning. Slowly, she puts the pieces together. Before she could make it home, a storm gathered. Lightning hit a power line and sparks rained down, the hot-burning electrical fire consuming her. Destroying her face. Where her nose, cheeks, and chin used to be, now there is…nothing. Maisie’s lucky enough to qualify for a rare medical treatment: a face transplant. At least, everyone says she’s lucky. But with someone else’s features staring back at her in the mirror, Maisie looks—and feels—like a stranger. The doctors promised that the transplant was her chance to live a normal life again, but nothing feels normal anymore. Before, she knew who she was—a regular girl who ran track and got good grades, who loved her boyfriend and her best friend. Now, she can’t even recognize herself. New York Times bestselling author Alyssa Sheinmel has created a gripping and gorgeously written tale of identity and love. This is a story of losing yourself and the long, hard fight to find your way back.

3.”Everything That Makes You” by Moriah McStay

One girl. Two stories. Meet Fiona Doyle. The thick ridges of scar tissue on her face are from an accident twelve years ago. Fiona has notebooks full of songs she’s written about her frustrations, her dreams, and about her massive crush on beautiful uber-jock Trent McKinnon. If she can’t even find the courage to look Trent straight in his beautiful blue eyes, she sure isn’t brave enough to play or sing any of her songs in public. But something’s changing in Fiona. She can’t be defined by her scars anymore. And what if there hadn’t been an accident? Meet Fi Doyle. Fi is the top-rated female high school lacrosse player in the state, heading straight to Northwestern on a full ride. She’s got more important things to deal with than her best friend Trent McKinnon, who’s been different ever since the kiss. When her luck goes south, even lacrosse can’t define her anymore. When you’ve always been the best at something, one dumb move can screw everything up. Can Fi fight back? Hasn’t everyone wondered “what if”? In this daring debut novel, Moriah McStay gives us the rare opportunity to see what might have happened if things were different. Maybe luck determines our paths. But maybe it’s who we are that determines our luck.

📚 Happy reading! As always, if you want to talk about anything, please reach out. We can rise from the ashes together.❤️‍🔥

#themightyreaders #burnsurvivors

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Middle-Grade Books Featuring Protagonists with Mental Health Struggles

Mental health is a difficult topic even for adults, so it can be hard to explain to middle-age kids. However, there are a few middle-grade books that have very relatable protagonists who struggle with mental health:

1.”Better With Butter” by Victoria Piontek
A girl with anxiety disorder finds an unlikely friend—and emotional support animal —in the form of an adorable fainting goat. Twelve-year-old Marvel is afraid of absolutely everything—amusement park rides, food poisoning, earthquakes, and that big island of plastic floating through the ocean. She also obsesses about smaller worries like making friends, getting called on by the teacher, and walking home alone. Her parents and the school therapist call her worries an anxiety disorder, but Marvel calls them armor. If something can happen, it will. She needs to be prepared. But when Marvel stumbles on a group of older kids teasing a baby goat that has mysteriously shown up on the soccer field, she momentarily forgets to be afraid and rescues the frightened animal. Only Butter isn't any old goat. She's a fainting goat. When Butter feels panic, she freezes up and falls over. Marvel knows exactly how Butter feels and precisely what Butter needs—her. Soon, Butter and Marvel are going everywhere together, and Butter thrives under Marvel's support. Butter also helps Marvel. Everything is easier for her with Butter by her side. But just when Marvel starts to imagine a life in which she can manage her anxiety, instead of letting it control her, Butter's owner shows up to claim her. Will Marvel find a way to keep her friend? Or will she revert back to the anxious, lonely person she used to be?

2.”Kissing Doorknobs” by Terry Spencer Hesser
During her preschool years, Tara Sullivan lived in terror that something bad would happen to her mother while they were apart. In grade school, she panicked during the practice fire drills. Then, at the age of 11, it happened. Tara heard the phrase that changed her: “Step on a crack, break your mother's back.” Before Tara knew it, she was counting every crack in the sidewalk. Over time, Tara's "quirks" grew and arranging her meals on plates, nonstop prayer rituals, until she developed a new ritual wherin she kissed her fingers and touched doorknobs....

3. “OCDaniel” by Wesley King
Daniel is the back-up punter for the Erie Hills Elephants. Which really means he’s the water boy. He spends football practice perfectly arranging water cups—and hoping no one notices. Actually, he spends most of his time hoping no one notices his strange habits—he calls them Zaps: avoiding writing the number four, for example, or flipping a light switch on and off dozens of times over. He hopes no one notices that he’s crazy, especially his best friend Max, and Raya, the prettiest girl in school. His life gets weirder when another girl at school, who is unkindly nicknamed Psycho Sara, notices him for the first time. She doesn’t just notice him: she seems to peer through him. Then Daniel gets a note: “I need your help,” it says, signed, Fellow Star Child—whatever that means. And suddenly Daniel, a total no one at school, is swept up in a mystery that might change everything for him. With great voice and grand adventure, this book is about feeling different and finding those who understand.

4. “The Miscalculations of Lightning Girl” by Stacey McAnulty
Lucy Callahan was struck by lightning. She doesn't remember it, but it changed her life forever. The zap gave her genius-level math skills, and ever since, Lucy has been homeschooled. Now, at 12 years old, she's technically ready for college. She just has to pass 1 more test—middle school! Lucy’s grandma insists: Go to middle school for 1 year. Make 1 friend. Join 1 activity. And read 1 book (that's not a math textbook!). Lucy's not sure what a girl who does calculus homework for fun can possibly learn in 7th grade. She has everything she needs at home, where nobody can make fun of her rigid routines or her superpowered brain. The equation of Lucy's life has already been solved. Unless there's been a miscalculation?

5. “Counting By 7s” by Holly Goldberg Sloan
Willow Chance is a twelve-year-old genius, obsessed with nature and diagnosing medical conditions, who finds it comforting to count by 7s. It has never been easy for her to connect with anyone other than her adoptive parents, but that hasn’t kept her from leading a quietly happy life...until now. Suddenly Willow’s world is tragically changed when her parents both die in a car crash, leaving her alone in a baffling world. The triumph of this book is that it is not a tragedy. This extraordinarily odd, but extraordinarily endearing, girl manages to push through her grief.

6. “Finding Perfect” by Elly Swartz
To Molly Nathans, perfect is:
• The number four
• The tip of a newly sharpened number two pencil
• A crisp, white pad of paper
• Her neatly aligned glass animal figurines
What’s not perfect is Molly’s mother leaving the family to take a faraway job with the promise to return in one year. Molly knows that promises are often broken, so she hatches a plan to bring her mother home: Win the Lakeville Middle School Slam Poetry Contest. The winner is honored at a fancy banquet with table cloths. Molly’s sure her mother would never miss that. Right…? But as time goes on, writing and reciting slam poetry become harder. Actually, everything becomes harder as new habits appear, and counting, cleaning, and organizing are not enough to keep Molly’s world from spinning out of control.

7. “Give And Take” by Elly Swartz
Twelve-year-old Maggie knows her new baby sister who smells like powder isn’t her sister for keeps. Izzie is a foster baby awaiting adoption. So in a day or a week, she’ll go to her forever family and all that sweetness will be gone. Except for those things Maggie’s secretly saving in the cardboard boxes in her closet and under her bed. Baby socks, binkies, and a button from Bud the Bear. Rocks, sticks, and candy wrappers. Maggie holds on tight. To her things. Her pet turtle. Her memories of Nana. And her friends. But when Maggie has to say goodbye to Izzie, and her friend gets bumped from their all-girl trapshooting squad to make room for a boy, Maggie’s hoarding grows far beyond her control and she needs to find the courage to let go.

📚 Happy reading! ❤️‍🩹

#themightyreaders #MentalHealth #Anxiety #GeneralizedAnxietyDisorder #ObsessiveCompulsiveDisorder #HoardingDisorder

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At this point I’m just trying to hold on. I’m so tired of being alone and sad and broken. My brain is broken and I can’t seem to get it fixed. One day I’m ok and then something triggers me and I’m sliding down that rabbit hole! I try to stop myself but all the negative thoughts pull me down and I struggle to get back up and when I do sooner or later I’m going right back down! I want to be ok not even happy but just okay. I don’t want to live like this anymore but I don’t know what else to do! May days I just want to get in bed with the covers over my head. On bad days I think about dying just stop dragging it out and die! I really don’t have anyone to talk to about this. They just tell me to take my medication and relax. I’m afraid that one day when I’m so sick of being in this cold dark lonely place that I will just end it. It seems like I’m the only one who has a cold black soul. There’s no joy No peace no happiness nothing just an emptiness. I believe in God but I can’t even feel him. What’s wrong with me

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I hate myself #BorderlinePersonalityDisorder #Anxiety #BingeEatingDisorder #MajorDepressiveDisorder

I literally hate myself. I hate my body. I hate my messed up mind. I hate the pain I feel every day. I wish I didn't exist. I feel like a burden to my husband. (He is the best husband ever...seriously). I feel lonely. I have no friends, not one. Acquaintances yes, friends, no. I have no one to talk to except my husband and I refuse to burden him with my messed up, crazy feelings. I feel therapy is a waste of time and energy. My best friend, my cat, is dying of intestinal lymphoma. I am in constant pain in my back and hip. How pathetic do I sound. Anyway, sorry to bother. #MajorDepressiveDisorder #BorderlinePersonalityDisorder

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Another sleepless night

Alone with my thoughts, which is never a good thing. If only I could get everything off of my chest. Then maybe my mind would allow me some rest. Seems like such a simple thing. Only I'm alone. Not a friendly somebody to save my life. It's something I've grown used to and doesn't bother me most days. Then out of the blue comes a night like tonight. When the loneliness cuts deep down into my chest. I am reminded of how life really is.

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