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Shootings, PTSD, and remembering why…

Dear Diary,

Most of the time, when I post on social media or Patreon, or in my Diary, I try and keep things entertaining, upbeat, and generally just optimistic in nature. Because that’s the kind of person I tend to be, you know? Today, however, keeping things light and positive is damn near an impossibility. I just can’t take my mind off the shootings that happened these past few days. Thoughts of them are bleeding into every facet of my life – time I spend with my big brother, my writing, and even hanging out with friends. I don’t know why these recent shootings have shaken me so badly; tons of them have happened these past few years (do you know how fucked up it is that I can write something like that?!), some very close to home, and I’ve always been able to separate myself from them. Somehow.

Not this time.

Like I posted earlier today on social media:


“I rarely comment on things like this, but these shootings lately have really hit me emotionally. My heart goes out to the family’s affected… I can’t even begin to imagine what they’re going through.

I hope I never can.”


And yes, I know I used the incorrect form of family (family’s instead of families), but I didn’t snap to that until after I sent the post, and by then I didn’t care. People understood what I was trying to say.

I think the reason these recent shootings have shaken me so much is that I have let so many more people into my life than I’m used to having, so many people into my heart. This is a good thing, of course, but when you see people’s lives get snatched so quickly and senselessly… it makes you realize that this can also happen to the people you love.

At any given moment.

For any reason.

No matter where they are or what they may be doing.

My big brother went into a coma a while back. I thought I lost him. I was a mess. Like, a complete nuclear meltdown mess. I cried so much and so hard that I swear I lost ten pounds just in water weight. Luckily, he woke up, but the experience shook me deeply – and permanently. I honestly think I have PTSD from that experience, to the point where I sometimes (more often than he’s probably aware) check in on him while he’s sleeping just to see if he’s still cognizant. A quick nudge. A text. Or call. Just to see if he budges. Sometimes I just crawl into bed with him and cuddle, listening to him breathe, and almost instantly go to sleep.

If he were to be shot and killed… I don’t know. I couldn’t go on. I just couldn’t…

I’ve physically clung to him so much this weekend that he’s probably sick of my face by now, but I know he understands why. He hasn’t said or done anything negative; it’s kind of like a kitten clinging to a pit bull. He’s tolerating me, even trying to comfort me, but I don’t think I can be comforted. Not when reality is the way it is.

I don’t let people into my heart easily, but when I love, I love hard. And I’m protective of the people I love, overly (and inappropriately) so most of the time. Like, I’m that girl that will jump up and get in someone’s face if they disrespect or hurt you, without thinking or caring about the size of the other person. Or the location.

And I don’t want to be any other way. When you love hard and sincerely, people tend to return the affection, which is why I have a lot of people I know I can go to if things go south. So that’s good. It’s a very good feeling.

Unfortunately, however, that kind of intense love and protectiveness comes at a cost. I’m paying it now.

Admittedly though, I feel a bit better getting all this out. It reminds me of why I started doing this to begin with – to give myself an emotional outlet. Maybe I need to start writing in this damn thing more often, because I’m always a complete fucking mental train wreck. 😅

Thank you for reading.

I mean that.

And please, whatever you do, be safe.




“We’re warriors, this culture, and we’re very puritanical about sex and very embracing about violence and I don’t know why that is.”

– Mark Ruffalo


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  1. Lamar on August 5, 2019 at 10:22 pm

    Things are really rough and enough is enough. But, at least you got it off your chest which is good.

    • Alexa Nichols on August 6, 2019 at 8:33 pm

      Thanks, boo boo. It really did help to type all that out. 😊

  2. Richie on August 7, 2019 at 12:08 pm

    And this too… shall pass!


    • Alexa Nichols on August 7, 2019 at 1:49 pm

      I know. And you’re right. But you know me: I’m a little emotional. Sometimes I get bothered by things. You knew me back when my brother went into that coma (hell you’ve known me since I became an author!) so you know I wasn’t a pretty sight back then.

      I can’t help it. I have a big heart… 😶

  3. Richie on August 7, 2019 at 3:21 pm

    Hi Alexa, I know! I know! The more empathy… the more reaction! When you’re a great person, as you are, you’re bound to feel worse about injustices and unfair things in life. when they occur… and there are plenty of both to upset decent people everywhere. Let’s hope that those ‘decent people everywhere’ stand up together and call out hate and evil when we all encounter it. Ironically, next week will be the 50th anniversary of my 60’s generation including myself attending Woodstock for peace, love and music. Can you imagine? 500,000 people on one hillside celebrating peace and love That’s what we need now; …another Woodstock type event to repeat it.

    Cheer up, my wonderful friend!


    • Alexa Nichols on October 3, 2019 at 7:40 pm

      Thank you, Richie. I wish I could have gone to Woodstock. From everything I’ve read and seen, it was amazing… 🥰

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