Damaged Mentality #2.5
“Writing was compiled over several years, done in 2010”
by Synthia Nicole
I sought this li’l zine out. I messaged Damage Mentality on that frightful Facebook & asked for a copy that had to do with mental illness, for the kitschy-end all batty-saga mega-zine in the works that MC Sunflower Jones, aka the darling dearest Steven & myself, is/are working on, What’s Your Damage? Synthia Nicole, through her zine’s FB page (www.facebook.com/DamagedMentalityZine), has been very sweet & lovely to MC Sunflower Jones & with a name like Damaged Mentality, how could it not be about mental illness?
Well, it’s kinda not really.
Damaged Mentality #2.5 is the back story, the front story, the middle story to Synthia Nicole’s battle with a horrific brain injury so severe that only 5% of other sufferers live. Through the headache, the hospital stay, the rehab & the rest, Synthia doesn’t gloss over anything, but she also doesn’t become too wordy about each step of the way, each step in her amazing recovery from this treacherously awful brain damage. Her living with it & moving the fuck on. It’s a perfect read. Short & oh-so-sweet sweet with nothing left out.
To imagine what Synthia went through is heartbreakingly pink on the spectrum of “oh my fucking hell.” The identity issues she struggled with, I think the most tummy-churning yet most grand part of the zine, were hard to read about but so spectacular to read about at the same troubled time. Both so terrifically sad yet with a quasi-okie dokie happy ending. Learning to shed your old
self for a new one. (For someone with Borderline Personality Disorder, where identity issues are near or at the top of the symptom list, this hit close to him…I shed a tear for her…& for myself, ‘cause I’m that self-centered)
Synthia Nicole’s writing is extremely fluid, like a warm ocean wave cuddled by the cooling sunset of an Indian summer, & I loved this zine.
I have kept it in my kitten purse for like ever (two weeks? I have no sense of time – forrealz) waiting for a chance to open its quarter-sized hot magenta cardstock cover. The smallishly cutepie pages are lovely – typed on many different fonts, cut & pasted with magnificent backgrounds, an old photo…my kinda zine-ee-zine, really. & so I finally pulled it out of my bag while waiting in line, sitting on the floor of the bustling halls at the courthouse. & I read 16 pages straight. No looking up. The line finally moved & my number was called. I totes held the zine in my hand, thumb holding my place inside. I wouldn’t let it go. Once in a little room, smashed with other confused family law plaintiffs, I sat at a table with the little dark pink zine under the table, & read the rest of the story. It reminded me of middle school, reading all those Anne Rice books under the tables & student desks in secret. But this was no vampire novel, it was about a girl & her struggle to come back. Her memories, her soul-reaching. Wayyy better than Anne Rice. Totes the real deal.
At the end of the zine there are a few surprises…a vegan recipe, some info on fair trade chocolate & notes on the place where she got such extraordinary treatment. I wanted more of her writing. I don’t say story because I think that Synthia Nicole did a pinnically polished job of telling her story. I’m quite content with the details she scryed up. But I do want more of her writing. On anything. I want more Damaged Mentality zines!
I know through the Damaged Mentality Facebook page that she was at the San Francisco Zine Fest last month (?) so she’s gotta be putting more shit out there – so exciting. Synthia Nicole, hit me up & let’s trade!
Am I a perzine reader, now? Good lord, this is strange. But two in a row & I’m hooked.