Hey everyone!

Just a quick update!!

G and I are doing well, so I won't really go into our relationship in this entry...

So in this entry, I'm going to focus on two main things; a leadership conference I just recently had and my maladaptive daydreaming.

Okay yes, I know, this is a site for maladaptive daydreaming, but this leadership conference has quite a few things to relate, and mostly to my depression and anxiety which are the two key factors in the evolution of my daydreams.

So recently, I, along with a club at my school, went up north for a leadership conference. It was an overnight trip; we were gone for two full school days. At this conference, we did things with teams that I'll be referring to as our home teams, but the people are all from different towns in the state of Maine, for the most part (with an exception of one or two from the same high school/ middle school). We also got to hear from different organizations about different topics that may have interested us... I mostly went to mental health workshops, but there were workshops on domestic violence, sexual health, and a bunch of other things. I went to one workshop that was supposedly about college, but it seemed to touch me on a mental health level. We were all required to create mind maps of what makes us who we are and then we had to flip the paper over and do what people think of us and call us. So I've had people in my family call me anti-social, a hermit, and a few other things like that. I often get called shy, quiet, too serious, too ambitious... someone once called me depressed (and I was depressed when they said it), so I wrote that down. I didn't think anything of it really, it didn't seem like that big of a deal. I brought it home and hung it on my bedroom wall so I could see it. Probably one of the biggest regrets of my life doing that. Okay sure, I kinda wanted my parents to see it, but I didn't think they'd think anything of it. Yeah no. I got my phone taken away and a talk about if I feel like something isn't right I need to find someone to talk to about it. I had to leave my phone downstairs and I haven't been allowed to bring it up to my room since, which I don't know how that could possibly help me, a Gen Zer, with depression. Like my phone is a security blanket and my room is my safe space. Yeah so now I do my homework downstairs because my phone being near me helps me concentrate and honestly, it takes me a lot longer to do homework and my grades are slipping. I'm thinking that maybe my grades will start slipping so much that my parents will either a) take my phone away for good or b) let me take my phone back into my room so I can study. Oh also my phone basically isn't working anymore because none of my chargers are working (although I know they actually work, I tested them with my old phone) so I'll need a new phone but my parents won't want to do that, but that's their loss because I won't have a way to communicate with them. So basically now if I want to be in my safe space (where I can cry, and where I really want to spend most of my time) I have to find something to do to occupy myself. I've reverted back to maladaptive daydreaming. This leads me to the second thing I'm going to talk about in this entry...

So I don't know what it is about my maladaptive daydreams, but they usually involve a lot of guys that have talked to me or have expressed an interest in me in the past month. They also for some reason have been mostly involving places where people have to sleep all in the same room... 

I'm laying on the air mattress that Grady and I were assigned to, on my right is Alex, my left is Jack. They both have smaller mattresses because they didn't go in with a girlfriend or anyone. Anyway, I'm laying there, by myself, when suddenly I hear:

"Hey, Hannah, Jack, Grady, anyone up?"

"Yeah I'm up," Jack grumbles.

"I'm up," I say. I hear the grumbles of Jack as he turns onto his right side to face my direction.

"Rickert, what have you been up to?"

"Jack it's none of your goddamn business," I look over my shoulder to see Alex sitting up now.

"Hey Alex, it's fine, I don't mind. You two both need to lighten up a bit."

"So where's your boyfriend?" Jack sneers.

"I... I don't know," I stammer as my face turns beet red, trying to remember where Grady last was. I bite my lip.

"Adorable."

"Excuse me?"

"I said adorable. You're doing that lip bite thing you always do when you're thinking."

"He's right," Alex pipes in.

"About...?" My voice trails off, wondering what they were talking about.

"Hah. You don't even know. No wonder guys can't flirt with you. Hannah, you don't even realize how you make guys feel." 

"And how's that?" I ask, with a bit of a pout.

"Stop it," Jack says. I can see that he's been shifting a little for the past few minutes.

"Are you okay?"

"Yeah, I umm I need to go to the bathroom," he says forthrightly. I sit up after he leaves and look at Alex.

"What the hell was that about?"

"Oh Hannah, you'll never learn. I'm surprised you haven't learned this from Grady. When a guy says to stop after he compliments you and you respond with an action, he could be in the midst of being turned on by you."

"Well I know, but it's Jack. He doesn't like me does he?"

"You'd be surprised at how many guys like you."

"Hmm well, I guess I'm not very good at recognizing it."

Some time passes without any sign of Jack or Grady. Finally, Alex speaks.

"You need to get some rest."

"Do I?"

"Mhmm."

I get the blankets around my chest and shiver.

"I saw that Hannah."

"What?"

"The shiver. Here let me just bring those blankets up a little on you," he gets up and bends over me, pulling the blankets up to my chin.

"Thanks."

He goes back and lays on his mattress, looking up at the large skylight opening up to the starry night sky.

"You know, I look at the stars all the time," I find myself saying.

"Whaa- you do?"

"Yep. I used to want to be an astronaut. Then when I knew that wouldn't happen I switched to wanting to be a meteorologist. Then I realized I could be an astronautical engineer and still study astronomy and stuff."

He turns to face me. 

"That's actually very fascinating... How'd you come to be a biomedical engineer?"

"Well once I realized there was a lot of physics involved with astroengineering, I was like well I like planets, I like rocks, why not study geology or geological engineering? Well turns out that's not a very popular major and I didn't want to go to school too far away, so I decided to go broader from that. Environmental engineering. I soon discovered that environmental had a lot of physics and just stuff I wasn't really interested in. So to stay with a similar major, I found materials engineering. This was what seemed like my future. The college I wanted to go to had it, and I could make a decent amount of money too. Well, I did more research and discovered that there was like computer programming and stuff, and I really wasn't interested in doing that. Related to materials was biomedical. This was life-changing. I really did like the medical field, but I didn't really want to be directly involved, I enjoyed dissections, but not talking about blood and the heart specifically. Like I really enjoyed the moose heart dissection in eighth grade. So I did a little research and found that there is a bit of computer work in Biomed, so I looked for an alternative just in case. I found pharmaceutical science. This seemed pretty cool, I could still do all of the chemical and biological stuff without all of the computers, but my mom said it's a boring career field, so I dismissed that idea. Turns out you don't need to take computer programming in high school to do Biomed."

"Wow."

"Yeah. Alright, I can't just sit here, I need something to drink or something."

We head to the bar area to get a drink. I'm well into my third shot when I feel a tap on my shoulder.

"Ohhh hiiiii Gradyyy. Drink?"

"Nah. I had one, let's bring you back though okay?"

"Ooooh where?"

"You need rest."

I look at Alex, and he's just looking at a beer he had almost gone."

"Whyy do I go baack?"

"You need to babe, cmon."

Alex pays for both of us and walks alongside me, so I'm in between him and Grady. Grady lays me down.

"Get some sleep now..."

I drift off to sleep, for what only seems like a few hours.

"Shit Jack put 'er down."

"Why? Her boyfriend's gone again, it doesn't matter."

"No dude you can't be doing this."

"What Alex, you aren't even a bit curious? I remember how you eyed her in history."

"Well so did you..."

"Yeah but I literally told her that she was cute and adorable."

"What?"

"Yup. She didn't seem fazed by it. Anyway, are you gonna help me or not? Her entire 100 pounds is getting heavy in my arms."

I stir a little, barely conscious, unable to even hear most of the conversation. I let out a soft moan.

"Ohhh damn if she makes that noise but louder for Grady, no wonder he feels he needs to keep her. That turn you on too Alex?"

"A little, yeah."

I feel something hard against my side, sort of like when I hug Grady for a long time... I grip onto the shirt."

"Uhhh dude I can't do this she's too heavy and turning me on too much."

"Put her back on her bed Jack."

I feel as if I'm being dropped when suddenly I feel the comfort of my bed.

"I just want a peek, Alex."

"That's on you dude, not me."

I feel my Calvin Klein pajama shirt being unbuttoned at the top, and a cool draft from the opening.

Before it's buttoned back, I hear two quiet voices say "Damn" almost simultaneously.

I wake up a few minutes later and look around.

"Hey is anyone awake?"

"I am."

*Grumble*

"I'm really lightheaded, have either of you seen Grady?"

"No."

"Nope. But you don't need him right now do you?"

"Well I just had this dream that there was someone looking at me while I was sleeping and he alwaus makes me feel better and safer with those things."

"We're here for ya," Jack says.

"Yeah we won't ever let anyone hurt such an amazing person," Alex says after staying quiet the entire time.

"Especially someone with such beautiful b00---eyes..." Jack started to confirm my suspicions about what happened, but corrected himself, so I didn't ask.

"Aw thanks guys."

"Anything for you."

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