Monday, 18 June 2018

On Feeling Depressed (Even in the Summer)



i've had depression for 3 years.

i still cringe a bit whenever i say that (or type it) because it's weird -- it doesn't feel like depression. i still believe that it's just me. i believe that this is just a personality trait.

"oh iona? she's the good listener with a poor outlook on life"

... but apparently it's not a trait.

because apparently it's not normal to sob for half and hour every time you misplace your phone charger. or to sleep for 12 hours a day (and that's only on a day without a nap).

oh, and, apparently it's not normal to think that you will never make it past this point in life because you're just not one of those people who is supposed to succeed or be happy.

no, it isn't a personality trait. i have an "illness."

it wasn't always like this.

sure, i didn't have energy and i didn't eat a lot but i was adjusting to university! i had hope that with the right meds and with enough time i would mellow out and get happier.

but it's now been 3 years and i've adjusted to university. i know the drill. heck, i'm graduating in april. so why haven't i mellowed out? why aren't i happier? i thought it was supposed to get better overtime, not worse.

but this whole depression thing it's like... i don't know... a banana? it just gets blacker and blacker and harder to ignore it because you can hear the noise of the flies even from the living room.

(bad analogy but you get what i mean.)

but, hey, at least it's summer, right? summers are fun! it's hot, you go on holiday, you go to the beach.

except the heat makes me feel even more tired and -- oh yeah -- i hate my body and now dread going to the beach.

my doctor said i should "give myself a chance to feel happy this summer"

as if i consciously choose to be sad.

hell, maybe i do. maybe i keep forcing myself to be depressed and that's why nothing is fixing it.

or maybe my doctor sucks.

who knows?

Sunday, 3 June 2018

22

via
Happy birthday to me!

This is the 4th year I'm making one of these posts. That's kinda cool, right? I think writing a blog is the longest hobby I've had. I mean I've wrote this blog for 5 years, and I had at least 2 other blogs before this one so that's probably like... 7 years.

I started my day by going to the market here in Capestang and had a coffee.

When I came home, my mum had bought like 7 pastries from the bakery for us all to try. We always visit this bakery, but only ever buy baguettes -- so it was nice to actually try all the cakes and sweets.

Unlike every year for the past 3 years, I don't really mind being a year older. It doesn't feel like such a big deal.

I think it's because I done a lot in the past year. I don't feel like I'm in the same spot, you know?

I think that's why I feel stressed at my birthday, because I am a year older but it seems like nothing has changed. But this year a lot changed so I just feel normal, I guess.

Does that even make sense? lol I hope so.

Long story short, I am not stressed to turn 22.

It's chill.

22 isn't even old.

Tuesday, 22 May 2018

Where to Eat in Barcelona

Barcelona, Spain


I just got back from Barcelona yesterday, after 5 days of exploring the city. 

I have been there once before when I was younger, but can't remember anything other than the football stadium, for some weird reason. So it was really good to visit again and really see the sights!

... If truth be told, I was more excited to shop in Zara and eat paella than I was to see the popular sights. Not that surprising, though, for me shopping and eating always take priority over sight-seeing.
But it didn't take me long to realize that there are a lot of crap food places in Barcelona. 

So, I done what anyone would and googled "best places food barcelona," but most of the places that came up were really expensive. Which obviously is no bueno because I'm a poor student and can't afford €8 potatoes, you know??

So, instead of writing about what I done, I decided to do a helpful post and list out the best places I ate. 

A couple tips before I start:
1. Don't order paella if there's a picture of it in the window or menu. It isn't real authentic, it's frozen and;
2. Eating places around the Sagrada Familia are double the price of anywhere else. Even the McDonald's has different costs.


--
M O N T J U I C
Carrer Blai
This is known as the "tapas street" because it's a long row of tapas restaurants. We tried quite a few of them and the best two were:

Blai 9 - By far the BEST place we tried. The tapas/pintxos were around €1.80 and the combinations were much more unique than the other restaurants. They had this nice octopus taco thing and one that was like a mini English breakfast. Plus a jug of sangria only cost €3.

La Tiza - This one was kinda hipstery and also one of the few that served desserts.

La Tasqueta de Blai - This one was probably the most authentic we tried. The pintxos were simple (really just cheese and ham) but they were only €1 so I can't really complain.





G O T H I C  Q U A R T E R
La Boqueria
If you're going to Barcelona, you must visit this market. It's a huge food market with everything from raw fish and meat to complete tapas meals with sangria. There are also a lot of stalls that sell these fruity smoothie drinks which cost €1 and they are stupidly good.

Chök
Just around the corner from la Boqueria, you'll find this donut store. Dude. I got a pistachio and hazelnut donut and I think I died and went to heaven, no exaggeration??? 

The Benedict 
One of the mornings, I was really wanting pancakes, so I made us walk around until we found this American brunch restaurant. It was the first time I had alcohol with breakfast, in the shape of a mimosa, but I gotta say I'm a fan.

--
S A G R A D A  F A M I L I A
Timesburg
I think this is only in Spain, but it's for sure a chain. It's sorta fast food except it tastes like a real restaurant. They have like 15 types of burger to choose from, and you can get a kilo of fries for €4 extra.

Mendieta 

This is one of the many bars throughout Barcelona. If you go to Spain, you'll probably end up in one at some point. They sell food all day as well as coffees and alcohol.  This particular one was arouond the corner from our hostel and it was where I had the best café con leche in the whole week.



So that's all the places I recommend! It turned out to be a bigger list than I thought, I lowkey thought I would only remember 3 places and this post would be kinda weak. But I basically remembered 8 so way to go.
I don't know when I will write a post next, but I will try not to take too long.
I hope you all have a great week!

Friday, 11 May 2018

MONTHLY ROUND-UP: April

34310 Capestang, France
This post is a bit late. I don't really have an excuse.

Since finishing my classes in mid-April, I done nothing for the rest of the month. I couldn't even write a blog post because I was doing nothing.

However, I did leave Canada on May 9th to go to France.

I got here on May 10th after a day of travel. I had a 5-hour layover in London Gatwick where I definitely spent too much money on presents for my brother's and sister's birthdays (but I really hit two birds with one stone there -- bought birthday gifts AND killing time).

I also started my Summer classes on May 7th. I hope this Summer semester works out as well as last semester because my grades were soo good. I'm not even sorry for boasting!

I did think I would do well because I studied a lot and stayed on top of the work (despite feeling depressed as hell most of the time), but I never thought I would get an actual A.

Those are my first two A-grades in my whole four years at university. Considering the topics they're in, I'm thinking I should become... a healthy woman??


Talking about health, mine has actually improved, sorta. I had a particularly low period during January and February, but thanks to my newest medication, I am doing alright.

I'm on Bupropion (or Wellbutrin) and it has reduced both the low moods and the high moods. Instead of waves of emotions, I am a line. My mood never goes above or below a 4 on the "Rate yourself out of 10" scale. I say 4 and not 5, because there's never a time that 50% of me is happy or sad. It's at max a 40% increase or decrease.

Which isn't necessarily bad. I much prefer this to what it was before. I'd take no emotions over too many emotions.

So that's a quick update about my life. I am going to Barcelona next week so I'll write a couple posts about travelling in the weeks to come.

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