<![CDATA[CHARLES EDWIN BOOKS - Blog]]>Thu, 05 Oct 2023 09:14:42 -0500Weebly<![CDATA[September Update]]>Tue, 26 Sep 2023 17:44:38 GMThttp://charlesedwinbooks.com/blog/september-updateHey there everyone.

I'm not sure how many folks visit this page or get updates here, but, there are still a few of you who continue to stick with me despite being so silent for so long. And for that, I just wanted to thank you for your continued support throughout the years, releases, and such.

And without further ado let's get you a long and overdue update you've probably been wondering about.
Since last January a lot has happened in life. Nothing bad or world shattering, but changes.

This summer all my kids had stuff come up which ended up causing quite a lot in terms of financial burden.
We weren't left drowning or lacking, but every aspect of savings we had, went to to this kid things. Since mid July I picked up a 2nd job and have been there since then. As such I had to, temporarily, bow out of streaming. I used to stream about 5 days a week at 2ish hours a night. But now I work at my part time job 4 days a week for 3 hours a shift. It isn't what I want to be doing with my life and I have long personal issue with me working more than 1 job, but, it is what my family needs for now and that's where I think I'll have to be for at least a year.

I've been asked if I'll be participating in NaNoWriMo 2023 and I'm not sure.

If you don't know, or forgot, nano is something that happens at various times during the year where writers typically ban together in communities of support to try and finish projects, start new projects, etc

While I'm not actively sitting at a keyboard I'm always working on the project mentally and plotting things. One of the major elements I changed in a story earlier this year was wanting to write

A Kid and His Slimes - 6 core books, 3 prequel books, 2 sequel books (1 of them being atticus 2)
Cybernetic Rebirth - 6 core books, 1 side book
??? 1 - 1 off story, involving a prequel to the worlds of the above series regarding 3 brothers featuring elements of light, dark, good, evil, and neutral.
??? 2 - 1 off story, involving elements from the last series as a sequel to both adding a 'finale' element
??? 3 - 1-? books telling the tales / adventures of 1 reoccurring character from the other 2 series. This would act as a prequel to the massive universe/world.

This feels like a massive series that I'm heavily putting my foot into. Both mind and soul. I want to write a massive series like that features an expanding world, world building, diverse characters, and compelling stories for each. I've been paying attention to so many things from other creators and I've been feeling extremely inspired from recent media such as the Final Fantasy 7 REMAKE compilation, Xenoblade, One Piece, Howl's Moving Castle, and more.

While this, I want, the above to be my life's work I also have a few side stories / novella pieces I want to write. In particular the duology I wanted to make. Each book with the pending names:
  1. The Legend of Dreamscape
  2. Dreamsend

Which would be a duology really tackling mental health, surviving environments, depression, and escapism.
Anyways, IF I do decide to do NaNoWriMo this year, my goals will NOT BE to hit 50,000 words. Last year I jumped to 25,000 in about 2 weeks. Which was great. Except it burnt me out so badly I haven't really written anything since. I put so much time and focus on it, that it really almost ruined writing for me. But, a positive I took was this:
  1. I don't need to be inspired to write
  2. I can create if im not inspired
  3. I tried to run a marathon with no prep

So, if I do write this year. It's going to be more about doing daily 15 minute writing sprints either daily, or just 4 or 5 times a week. To some that might sound small, or stupid. But right now I'm writing 0 words per day. This goal, will be something at least.

Something I've always done is thoughtful considered the content I'm consuming. And recently we've been watching Netflix LA adaptation of One Piece. In it the main character Luffy is constantly talking about "your dream", "his dream" and how he won't get in the way of someone's dream and will support his friends to getting to follow their dreams. So it got me wondering what my dream was. And it's to be a story teller. And right now I haven't been telling any stories at all. And I have so much imposter syndrome and insecurities constantly holding me down. Then I've been reminding myself of something Seth Rogen said in an interview "If you try, you might make it. And if you don't, you definitely won't." As simple as that idea is, it's just been floating around in my head for weeks maybe even months now.

Anyways, the point of what I'm trying to say in these ramblings is that I feel like I've finally nailed down something I want to do for myself and trying my best to give myself the tools needed to start, grow, and succeed. And succeed to me is going to be actually writing and releasing stories.

Life is long. People change, dreams change, goals change, and all of that is okay. So many popular creators didn't start or even find success until they were 40, 50, even 60+. There is no time table and no need to try to rush anywhere.
If you're still here, thanks for reading the ramblings of my brain and I hope you all are doing well.
<![CDATA[March Update]]>Mon, 20 Mar 2023 19:58:55 GMThttp://charlesedwinbooks.com/blog/march-update
Well where to begin aye?

I haven't really sat down to write anything since NaNoWriMo. A few folks in my life might have many things to say about that. Whether I'm an actual writer, or whether I'm doing things correctly or not. It always seems like those who don't have so much to say on how you do.

My mental health has been a struggle. It feels like most days I'm putting a band aid on an open wound. In January and February it was really bad. I kept myself going by saying "Let's see how we feel in March." But March is almost over and I can feel it deteriorating day by day. I keep putting off chores, or activities, to try and just make it through the day. I play games to escape my own mind and it keeps me stable. But once I'm done it's back to the inner battle. Games aren't even helping much these days.

I'm not finding joy in anything I've been doing. I keep plotting THEODIN but not actually writing it. I'm struggling with even calling myself an author or a writer because of how inconsistent I've been. It's easy to say "don't care what other's think" "do your own thing". It easy to say that and hard to live that way. Especially, if that advice comes from people who just don't understand. It's hard to wrap my head around the idea that multiple generations of people just don't understand depression, mental health, anxiety, etc. Even after I've educated people some of their weirds still whirl around in my head. "Why do you choose to be miserable?" "Why can't you just be happy?" "In spite of those events look at you now."

Even though I tell them I'm not looking to be celebrating I'm looking to have my feelings heard and talk through the events, but no one knows how to do that.

My relationships are failing. Friendships dwindling to nothing more than memories in the wind of people I used to know.

"What do you have to be sad about? You're married, have a good job, and have kids. Be grateful."

Helpful. Thanks.

Time heals all wounds they say. But time only allows mine to widen. 
What people don't understand about these struggles is its very rarely me vs the exterior. Those battles can be hard, but are much easier than the reality that each battle is me vs me. People don't understand what it's like to look in a mirror and see your lowest insecurities smirking back at you. All the tools and power to use against you. From the deepest pits of self doubt. With extreme prejudice and accuracy. It's an exhausting battle to get back up and face yourself again and again. And again.

And again.

I'm tired.
I'm tired of constantly being at war with myself. At fighting off indifference and the overwhelming feeling of not being good enough. I know showing up and being present is 99% of the struggle. But when you scream out and nothing answers. Over and over again. Before you know it it's just you, yourself, and the void.

No one is coming to help you.
No one is coming to save you.
You either help yourself. Or you slay yourself. One version or another.
You're either reborn or keep surviving, or the unwanted wins.

​But no one understands.
<![CDATA[We Need to Normalize Talking]]>Thu, 01 Dec 2022 21:12:42 GMThttp://charlesedwinbooks.com/blog/we-need-to-normalize-talking
I didn't get much sleep last night. I left early, hoping to pick up a coffee for the long day ahead. Went to submit a mobile order for pick. Out at this location. "Bleh." I thought. I'll head to the other location. As I made my way in and our of traffic rushing to get across a town. I finally arrived. Alas, to my dismay, the line had 10 cars waiting to order. I didn't have time for that and off I went to drop the kids off at daycare. As I left the parking garage, now on my way to work, I decided to stop by a local coffee shop and pick up something.

To my delight, my favorite barista was working today. Giving me a "Hey! Long time no see!" and ringing up my usual they got to work brewing up my large mocha with caramel and whip. When I asked "How have you been?" 
"Oh, I'm good. I'm doing 'Friendsgiving' tonight with some friends."

It was at that moment I felt my mind pull backwards and memories from the last ten years flooded me. Remembering when I would go and celebrate 'friendsgiving' with people who were close to me. Remembering weddings I had attended or birthday parties at friends' homes. Going out for pool and drinks. Mug Wednesdays ending with pizza and gaming at someone's apartment. The warm nights and laughs with friends. As my memory came closer to the present, those memories thinned out. The cast of attendees dwindled until there were no recent memories to recall.

"Ahh, that's nice. I used to do that with my friends." My voice is genuine, but a little sad.
"Well, you still could, right?" My face must have given me away because a second later they said. "Or, maybe not?"

Looking down at the counter, I just smiled before I replied.
"You know how a group of friends always ends up with that one person who everyone asks "why is this person in our friend group?"?"


I looked back up at them as they poured my coffee into its cup.
"I'm pretty sure I am that person."

"Oh. That's some...self awareness." They replied pouring the cream to add a splash of latte art before piling on the whipped cream.

Which started me on a path of self reflection once again. I made a few posts about this on Instagram this morning. Talking very shortly about it via 2 story posts. Despite 'getting it off my chest' it's continued to roll around in my head all day. I wanted to take a minute to try and exercise it out of my brain.

You might think "Why do you feel like you're unwanted in your friend group?" and let's go through why my mind feels like this is true.

Up until the last year or so I was friends with these folks on social media. I was in group chats with them as well. Any time I messaged my messages would be ignored, forgotten, or just stepped over. If anyone else messaged though, everyone replied immediately. For a while, I never let it bug me. Until I started to see pictures or hear stories of how everyone got together. Or celebrated a wedding, or whatever other major event you'd typically want your friends at. Only, they did have their friends with them. I just wasn't someone they saw as one. And I started to just line the pieces up. Everyone knew when x person was moving away because they told them all. I was told 2 days before hand. Another friend transitioned and celebrated renewing their vows/remarrying with their partner and everyone got together to celebrate. Only, I wasn't invited and only knew about it after a social media post was made.

"Well, I'm sure not everyone was invited." You might think.

But everyone was invited, except for me. That hurts, you know? It hurts to know you're the outcast, or the unwanted person. To think back on your friendships and think "was this a good memory for us? Or was it good to me, and just really annoying to them?" And then everything feels dishonest and fake.

Now, let me say this next. These people do not owe me anything. They're not bad people because I was excluded, left out, not thought of, or just unwanted. They're good people who lead lives where they just want happiness and love like anyone else. This blog post isn't a "here's 10 reasons why my friends suck" or whatever. I'm just listing out events and saying how they made feel. So again, they're all good people. It just became obvious to me they moved on in life and didn't want me to be a part of it. They didn't and don't want me there. And that's okay. It's okay they don't want to be my friends any more. It's okay they don't want me.

It still hurts though. I'm allowed to feel hurt and sad. These people were really important to me for a long time. It's why I always reached out, checked in, sent messages, tried to game with or get together. And for awhile it gave the benefit of the doubt that they just don't text much. They're busy. They had a long day. ADHD probably distracted them and they just forgot to get back to me. But when I saw them making plans together, getting together, going out, and living life with one another present. That's where it became obvious. I wasn't wanted and, really, I never belonged in the first place. I was the friend that everyone wondered "why is this guy even here?".

I don't want anything from them. I just hope they're happy and leading good lives. But inside, for me, it hurts. I feel lonely and part of seeing all these connections now I knew I was alone all this time. But held out hope it was just a misunderstanding on my part. I was being "too emotional" as some them used to tell me.

It's okay to be upset.
It's okay to hurt.
It's okay to feel lonely.
It's okay to not be okay.

Part of why I wrote this piece is that I always want to normalize the conversation of emotional and mental health. We need to remember we can, and should, talk about these things.

I am sad and lonely today as I realize I really don't have any IRL friends left around me. Which leaves me feeling so extremely alone. It's okay to feel that way. I'll be okay. But today, it's okay to not be okay.
<![CDATA[Personal Stuff & What Nano Taught Me]]>Mon, 25 Jul 2022 21:31:37 GMThttp://charlesedwinbooks.com/blog/personal-stuff-what-nano-taught-me
Hi friends. It's been quite some time since I updated the blog. Some of you follow me over on Instagram and are the most up to date with my ups and downs. Today, though, I wanted to get more of my ideas out of my head than normal. A story only goes so far. And Instagram has a 2,000-ish character limit. So, here we are!

"What do I want to talk about today?" I hear you ask. Well, a lot of things actually. From updates about myself, to discussing mental health, my struggles with this time of year, and the lessons I learned from participating in NaNoWriMo this year. Yeah, I think that order should about do it. Feel free to skip to whichever parts are important to you!
Updates about Myself
Hmm, now that I'm here I'm finding myself struggling to put down words. My real life 8-5 job is going quite well. I couldn't be happier with my employer, coworkers, and bosses. They're all wonderful, which is a blessing.

I've started working on a new book. I'm roughly 25,000 words into it. For perspective, ATTICUS came in around 45,000. I've also started streaming on twitch 5 days  a week. Currently I'm taking narrative requests and playing them so others can experience the story without playing. I'm trying to post more on instagram. Which I'm focusing on either writing/author items or trying to show readers what narrative games they may enjoy!

My family and I recently returned from holiday. Nothing major, just a short 3-ish hour drive to spend time with family. The kids always love getting to spend time with their cousins. Which is good. Though some are entering that stage of life where you truly want to be an individual and stand out from your family. I remember my own struggles with that era. Heck, it's still a thing for me.

Oh, and I started drafting up reviews for cozy style games. I had did a good number rather quickly, but have been distracted with Pokemon. My next cozy review is of Harvestella. But due to its genre and size I really want to beat it before I write anything up.

Mental Health and my Struggles

This time of year can be hard for everyone. I know for me, it can be quite the challenge. Not sure if it's just the lack of sun. Or because it gets dark sooner here. Not to mention how artic the area becomes. I know for myself though, it's a time of year that can be a really slippery slope. Usually, I can keep myself afloat until about January. Then, it's a struggle. This year though, I'm more equipped than ever before with self awareness, digital friends, and tools to help keep me more calm. Which is good because I am a person who spirals, fast.

If you're out there struggling too. I hope you know you're not alone. I also hope you'll talk about it. Whether it's with people who are close, or even just online. I try to do this a lot in my Instagram stories. I hope that people see it and see that they're not alone out here. Despite being so connected by every channel possible, it's easy to feel so so alone. Hang in there friends. You're always welcome to message me and I'll listen.

I really hope as we keep talking about this sort of thing the lessons sink in for others. Not just the people struggling. But for the bystanders. They mythical creatures who shake their heads at those of us who struggle with the anxiety, trauma, and voices in our head. I really hope they have open ears and empathy when listening.

What I learned from Nano

As I continue to write I feel my ambitions fading away. I'm losing focus and my fatigue is growing.

This year I decided to participate in the annual NaNoWriMo. A challenge event for writers or authors to try and write 50,000 words in the month of November. Many do this via writing prompts, or practices to hone their skills. Others, like myself, use it as a launching pad to get a bunch of work done in the next project. While I had a beautiful start, I fell off midway through. In about 2 weeks I wrote a solid 25,000 words and was on track to complete Nano. But, I just couldn't do it. I burnt myself out mentally and emotionally. Writing 1,667 words every day was hard. Especially, since my writing style previously was "only write when the muse strikes". But, there are some wins.

1. I actually wrote 25,000 words in 2 weeks.
ATTICUS took me 8 months to write, edit, revise, etc. And it was taxing emotionally and physically. Mentally too. I swore I couldn't write unless I was blessed with the gift of inspiration. I learned I can tap into that when I want to and I don't have to wait around for the golden hour of inspiration. That's huge!

2. I was training a new muscle and I went too hard.
You don't go to the gym and start bench pressing 200 pounds. You start slow, build your muscles, and work your way up. I didn't do that with my writing. I burned myself out. I pushed too hard, too frequently. Something I think I'll from here on out though is writing sprints. Wherein, I set a timer for 5-25 minutes, or something, and just write in that window.

Those were the 2 major lessons I learned this year. I think that's a big deal. So while I "failed" the NaNoWriMo challenged. I can learn from failure. I was able to self access and see what didn't work for me, how I failed, and what could work for me in the future. We're all people learning and growing. Just because I failed, doesn't mean it's the end.

I hope others will remember that too and show themselves grace in life.

If you made it this far, let me know in the comments how you're doing! Or give it a like, if that's an option. If you're enjoying this blog, it sure would mean a lot if you shared them on Insta or wherever you think it can help people.

Until next time friends. Always remember you're not alone out here. 
​Hang in there.

<![CDATA[A Societal Drowning]]>Wed, 13 Jul 2022 20:17:59 GMThttp://charlesedwinbooks.com/blog/a-societal-drowning

Society and social media have a strange place in our daily lives. They made it as a way to connect with friends or family. Especially in the cases of living far from one another. But in the era of 2022, it's more similar to a cesspool of despair. Whether it's to slam on others' opinions online or eavesdrop and "spy" into the shared day to day of a friend or family member. These days, social media is an expectation by the masses. If you don't keep your friends or family added, then there are problems. If you don't have a presence, then you're suspicious.

I know many, and I too speak from experience, have amazing friends in the digital space. People who genuinely cheer you on. Who hope you succeed. It's strange we come to rely on random people through screens to help get us through the day but we cannot rely on our family or friends to be present and there. What a backwards concept.
Despite this strange phenomena this is what my life feels like. I often feel ostracized from my family and events. I'm the last to know anything, or hear it via word of mouth. I'm fairly confident people who associate with my IRL are embarrassed by it. I don't think folks want to be associated with me in this region.

I'll share my ideas regarding life, issues, and etc on facebook and be branded an extreme radical. I'm ignored and unengaged with. Meanwhile, I can post a picture of my children and bam 50 likes and a dozen comments. This bothers me massively.

Meanwhile, on isntagram or tiktok I share the same opinion and people cheer me on. I'm sent messages thanking me for sharing my opinions. Or personal messages of appreciation as my message, comments, and post helped them get through the day. Or gave them the courage and strength to keep going.

How can the same idea be treated in such strict contrast. It's easy to say "oh that's just facebook vs instagram". As the person who has to live in that reality it's extremely painful. I essentially live in a bubble that doesn't want me in the bubble. Whereas, everyone outside of it is cheering me on and hoping I'll succeed.

It's mentally exhausting. Digital relationships are powerful and incredible things. But for me, I need IRL people to share that view point, and I just don't have it. Instead, I'm slowly feeling crazy for who I am and what I believe or stand in. I'm left out of things or specifically not talked to because my scope of life is so far outside their own.

Even this blog post. I know my digital friends will see it. Thanks for always coming here and being in my corner. But then people IRL, will they end up here? No. They won't.

I have to keep a positive demeanor in family functions and social circles. Otherwise I'm "too much" because people don't want to talk about the struggles. People here don't understand imposter syndrome, they can't even fathom what it is. Some of them did find their way onto my instagram once, but told me I shouldn't post about my mental issues online. That it wasn't appropriate and no one wants to read about my whining online.

There is only so much a person can bear. Only so many mental battles someone can fight and walk away from.

If you've read ATTICUS, you'll be familiar with this image. Because I wrote an entire book on the concept of inner struggle. And let me tell you, that nightmare is growing stronger each day again. But with no mental stability, the ground is crumbling away once more. If push comes to shove, I'll have to hope I can survive myself once more. One of the hardest battles anyone has to deal with is the one where they are left alone to fight off themselves.

If you've found your way here and are struggling too. Hang in there.
You are loved.
You are valued.
You have meaning.
We want you here.

I'll try to keep reminding myself of that too.
<![CDATA[Let Your Rebellious Spirit be Free]]>Wed, 08 Jun 2022 20:56:48 GMThttp://charlesedwinbooks.com/blog/let-your-rebellious-spirit-be-free

Since the release of my first book it feels like my Imposter Syndrome has come alive stronger and more often then ever before. Receiving mixed feedback of praise and love to criticisms about typos, flow, and how novice my writing ability is. It's left me feeling lost and shaken to my core on a constant basis. Recently though, while the imposter syndrome quakes and leaves my soul trembling as it lurks beneath the surface, I feel as if I've found an old part of myself. One that allowed me to walk more freely even amongst the chaos ravaging my insides.

A memento or relic from my younger self, whatever you want to call it. It helped reawaken memories with close friends and mentors telling me things like:

"Even though I don't like you, I actually respect you a lot. You're one of the only people that just tells it like it is. Regardless of whether that makes you popular or not. You're just honest and I never have to wonder if you have ulterior motives. Its refreshing and honestly, really calming. Even if you are the loudest person in the room."
"You're so full of life in a world full of gray. It's why I was drawn to be your friend. No matter what, promise me you won't let the world take away your color."

"Seeing the beauty in the world isn't something everyone can do. In fact, you're most likely to be ostracized and kept at arms length by most people. That's just because they can't see what you see. They can't comprehend life on a grander scale like you do. It'll be lonely, but, we need people like you to pave the way for everyone else, despite how lonely it'll be."

As I take a seat in the theater of my own mind and watch as my life's film plays by I see clips of my younger self. While I was a confused, angry, and lost child. I also had so much passion. I was filled with a strong will and regardless of the outcome I always stood by my moral compass. Even if it made my friends angry or caused fights with family I never strayed from who I was. For all the things I was naïve about as a teenager, my tenacity and strong will was unmatched. I would've thought as I grew this power would continue to course through me, but, ultimately it quieted until it was nothing more than a candle flame easily placed behind glass. Transitioning from young into adulthood I started biting my tongue more, being more agreeable, and falling in line behind the standards society laid out for us all. It didn't happen over night, but throughout the years my "rebellious spirit", as some would call it, went to sleep.

Walking through the neighborhood of memories and peering inside each years' and moments' building it's interesting to see how the events went. Thinking back on them, how many of these moments, if things had just slightly been different, how different would my outcome have been? Would I still end up here where I am today? Would fate, regardless of the route, always bring me here? To an insecure, broken, remnant of who I used to be? A shell of a person? Maybe that's too harsh. While I might've lost my rebellious spirit I gained empathy and compassion. I can analyze and speak freely about my emotions and feelings which was something I never could've done in my younger years. I can openly cry with people now. I can tell you why I'm sad, and what I need as a person. That too is a strong power, just in a different way.

I may never have the same tenacity, or blindness, to my own values as when I was a child. But I can combine who I am today with the good lessons of my youth. I can remove the glass from around the candle and allow my rebellious spirit to once more be free and ignite the distractions around me. That is something I can do.

I hope you'll read this and reflect on your own experiences. Don't let other people dictate what you can and cannot do. Don't let someone stop you from pursuing what you want because "you're not good enough." "people won' want that." "who is going to want something from you?" "who are you to talk about that?" Let your rebellious spirit be free and burn brightly. Follow your heart and believe in yourself. And if that's too hard. Remember I believe in you and let that be your help until you learn to stand on your own again.

For me, I'm late to this occasion, but, as of today I'll let my rebellious spirit free once more.
"Crush the obstacles in my path and soon they will know our names. Ravage them."
<![CDATA[We Need to Talk About Entitlement]]>Tue, 15 Mar 2022 21:35:31 GMThttp://charlesedwinbooks.com/blog/we-need-to-talk-about-entitlement
I think this is an important conversation to have. To start I wanted to share a situation that was shared with me and all names and such will be revised.

Kevin reached out to me the other day stating that they had an issue they wanted to vent about. In that conversation they mentioned how frustrated they were with how an important person in their life didn't respect their boundary and privacy when it came to personal information. Kevin said this person had sent out a message to their entire family sharing something personal, which I won't share, against their wishes. i.e. they did not consent to the sharing of this information. Kevin also expressed frustration due to this same person not respecting their boundaries in the past by sharing extremely private and personal details with the family.

Reflecting on this it got me thinking about my own issues with my family growing up and that's the theme of our post this time.
In my own family network from my parents, to grandparents, to cousins and etc. there has always existed this ridiculous level of entitlement. That because we are family everyone has a right to each other's business. Or because they're the parent, they're entitled to share their child's information regardless of whether the child wants them to or not. I remember friends at times telling me their parents forced them to share personal details with grandparents, or aunts and uncles, full well knowing the recipient would enter a hissy fit and lash out in frustration, anger, or shame them. I'm not sure when this started in the generations, but for me I know it went all the back to my grandmother on my father's side. For some reason it was everyone's "right" to know what each other were doing. And let me tell, you in conservative North Dakota, that isn't always a good thing. I mean, it's rarely a good thing no matter where you are, but depending on what it is, it could be pretty bad.

I've spoken at length about this with some folks and it's really just something that's engrained in the culture around here. Could be everywhere, but I'm only speaking from experience. I think these adults were shamed and had their business shared as a child and so that poor trait continued down the generational line. I'm fairly ostracized on my father's side of the family, which is honestly okay with me. I have very little interest engaging with folks who...well, that's a conversation for a different day. Needless to say my refusal to be gaslit and be talked down to, as I aged, was received very poorly in this type of family type. I quickly was thought of as a problem child by many.

What I want to get you thinking about today is whether you do this in your life.
Why or why not?
Does your family have this similar level of lines blurred and a lack of respect for one another?
Or are people allowed the right to privacy and respect?

Many times in my life I've found myself in the role of confidant. Whether someone wanted to inform me about big news on the horizon or about receiving unfortunate news from their doctor. A common theme I'd hear from people is

"Please don't tell other people about this yet." 

And it's the yet that always bothered me. Something I stand firmly by is this.

Just because you have information it does not afford you the right to share it.

I think that sentence is huge. Mostly in part because so many people often feel entitled to information. Whether, like in Kevin's case, it's your parent. It could be a best friend, or sibling, even a partner. The entitlement and expectation of information can come across in any type of relationship and I think that's a massively bad thing. Everyone has a right to their own privacy in life and whether we share that information or not should be entirely up to the person has the right to that information. By that I mean, if I go to the doctor and they inform me I have cancer is it my families right to know? No. Is it my right to share that information? Absolutely. I know a lot of people will likely disagree with that comparison, regardless of how you feel it's still true. No relationship, be it best friend, lover, child, parent entitles you to the extreme personal details of someone else. We can even turn this around back in a situation from a few years ago. A famous youtube was visiting Japan and happened upon a person who had taken their own life. What did they do in this situation? Film it and upload it to the internet because "content". There is such a massive level of entitlement engrained in our society that people think they have the right to share anything and everything simply because it happened in front of them.

If you want someone to feel welcomed and encouraged to share those deeply personal things you need to have created a safe and welcoming space for them and yourself. Where open dialogue can be had. A place that doesn't facilitate anger or shame. I think that's incredibly important.

A friend of mine was moving and he suddenly told me "Hey I'm moving 300 miles away in a few weeks."
Can you imagine how hard it would have been for him if I had leaned into him and gave him so much grief over it? Of course I was going to miss my friend, but, I was happy they shared their news with me.

I first asked him "Is it okay if I ask why you're moving?" and when he shared why with me and told me he was excited to go I mirrored his excitement. For him, he didn't feel like he had much left here any more. He has always wanted to move there as well and now was the perfect time to do so. He already had a job lined, had other friends in the area, and was ready to go.

This guy has been my friend since middle school. We shared an apartment together. Had many late nights drinking and eating tacos together. Played games all night and watched tv together. Shared a lot of laughs and tears together. He is a great friend. Of course I would miss him being so close. But rather than try to guilt him, or make it all about me, I just told him how I felt.

"Well, I am excited for you and I'm happy to hear you have friends in the area and a new job. I am going to miss knowing your just around the corner because you're important to me and I really love having you so close by. But I hope you find a lot of joy and happiness with where you're going!"

We spent our last night sharing a few drinks with tacos and wishing one another well. I hope he's doing okay. He isn't very good at texting.

Anyways, think about situations like that. Put yourself in other's shoes. Start to evolve your empathy and remove yourself from a situation that really doesn't belong to you. As friends, and parents, our role is to support and encourage those in our lives. Not control. I think a lot of people were raised thinking the opposite and that is a mold we need to break in order to learn new ways to communicate and grow together.

Let me know what you think in the comments.

Thanks for making it to the end and I hope to see you in the next one!

If you are someone who enjoys watching live streams and the legend of Zelda. I will be doing a Help or Hurt Breath of the Wild playthrough starting at 8:30pm CST on Sunday March 27th on my Twitch page. It is going to be a wild time and I hope you'll consider dropping in! I'll be posting more about it on Instagram Stories and, of course, chatting about it in my normal live stream schedule.
<![CDATA[Ask and you Shall Receive]]>Mon, 14 Mar 2022 21:30:53 GMThttp://charlesedwinbooks.com/blog/ask-and-you-shall-receiveMusic used as background: Departure from Final Fantasy Crystal Chronicles
Hello writing, reading, and author friends. Some of you might have been anxiously awaiting this day while others might be surprised. If you didn't know, my Instagram Story space is quite lively. I post almost daily on it. Usually several times throughout the day. Whether it be updating folks on what I'm doing, a sneak peek into family life, or food for thought type posts. If you've followed my stories, been to live shows, or chatted with me you know it's no secret I am a massive advocate for mental health. I take great pride in presenting my issues openly and honestly. I do so hoping to normalize the conversation. I hope that others see my issues and can relate to or find them relatable. I often receive messages or comments thanking me for being open and talking about these things. Or gratitude for putting out positive vibes into the space. When I asked if folks wanted me to begin a blog doing a deeper dive into some of these issues that are close to home many of you said yes! I was pleasantly surprised to see that and so, the blog has been born!
With this first post I wanted to take a chance to leave a couple remarks or "instructions" if you would. As someone who can't write without music, I'll include a song link at the top. For those of you who want to feel the mood or tone of my post.  Please take advantage of it!

My posts have a comment section as well. I want you to feel welcomed and encouraged to share your thoughts on any topics I bring up. The best way to educate and learn is to have a back and forth. Obviously, we should all keep it respectful and clean. So, if you see nonsense before I do, rest assured it will be cleaned up, but I don't think that should be a problem!

The blog will feature topics that I want to dive in and explore more freely. My Instagram and TikTok have become positive places of encouragement, growth, and kindness. I post a lot of personal items in those locations when it comes to dealing with depression, trauma, and mental health. The big ones, or ones that mean a lot to me, will end up here. Some of it may be personal stories from my youth, struggles in parenting, my very loud stance against physical discipline, and may end in a long rant about my own parents. Nevertheless, the conversation is the most important part so I hope you'll share your voice.

This won't be advertised much either. So, if you found it, consider yourself part of a special group of secret readers!

If you're interested in the blog consider subscribing with the RSS Feed, add the page to your bookmarks, or follow along on Instagram.

See you soon!