Random Thoughts #5.

I’ve been feeling down.

It’s not something you think about when you’re happy, but when you’re sad or anxious, that’s all you can think about. Which lately has been how I feel more and more often. Between the stress of university selections, upcoming math exams, not feeling physically great, and juggling the underlying thought that “something may still be wrong with me”, has been wearing me down.

And I mean down…

Down straight through the ground – so far down I think I feel my butt starting to warm up.

All jokes aside, it’s not easy feeling this way. Especially when you read a post on the confessions page (of the school that I’m thinking of going to) talking about how they don’t believe that people should blame anxiety and that “everyone can get a 4.0”. I replied sharing my knowledge and understanding of “mental health” and personal experiences with people who are trying their hardest, but their obstacles are just too much to overcome. I have been trying my best to talk to people about it (my own fear). I talked to people I believe know me well, but it’s hard for those few voices to overcome the voices of many – society, the education system, and other voices that we place at a high significance.

Between fearing that I have not applied to programs for my highest potential or not even getting into the programs that I did apply to, you come to a crisis of “where do I even belong at all?” I am being pulled to believe that “I’m dumb because I didn’t apply to _____”, but also people making me  think “Why didn’t you apply to ________” because “you seem like the type to apply there.”

Between people who are discounting me too much (including myself), and people forgetting that this huge incident happened to me like just over a year ago (also including myself), it’s really difficult to see which side is most correct in their assumptions, or where the truth is along that scale.

When I get home, I feel down, I feel sick, I feel cold, and I feel tired, but above all, I feel afraid. Afraid that thing that I believe took a huge part of what I considered myself to be, took something that I cannot replace sufficiently anymore. I honestly feel robbed. Robbed by my circumstance. Robbed not of my future, but of the future that people expected of me. Maybe the choices I make now because of it really allowed me to get to my future earlier, but right now, I feel judged. I feel ashamed, and despite knowing what I think I really want, I still fear that that’s just not good enough for me because that’s what people and society have been telling me.

As much as we like to mock certain programs or schools, the people in those programs/schools/campuses are still people too. People with emotions, situations you may not be aware of, and as much as we love to generalize people these days, I find myself realizing the tone that gives off.

When people say ________________ is a waste school/program/whatever, that immediately downgrades everyone in it. It disregards specific circumstances, it disregards specific interests, and it turns these huge decisions (life decisions) into mathematical calculations. We may be investing in our future, but this investment isn’t something monetary.

Remember: we can’t all be CEOs, we can’t all be lawyers, we can’t all be doctors, some of us will just have to be other things that aren’t are prestigious and we will just have to be happy with that (that includes themselves too)- there’s no need to shame anyone.

So now, even after saying all of that, I still am having a difficult time with my decision (not that I even need to make one yet, I haven’t even gotten the official acceptances from the two choices that I’m debating between). At the end of the day, I’m not sure if I’m just saying these things because it represents how I really feel, or if I just got really good at making myself feel better.

War Paint.

I streak on my concealer across all the scars on my face, covering all my inner battles.

I buff powder into my skin, blending my sickly skin to porcelain perfection.

I add highlighter and blush, creating the image of colour and health.

I comb on mascara to make my eyes seem open; unaffected by my tired, droopy lids.

I do these things not to make myself seem beautiful to others, but to feel powerful to myself.

I look at myself in the mirror and admire the art I have created.

Not the smears of colours I have added, but at what it enhances on the canvass.

Sometimes, it just takes a stroke of colour to find that person within – the one that is strong, confident, and powerful…the one that was always there.

 

 

Letting Go.

I had to make some tough calls this week. It was like I held all these balloons and one by one, they were deflating. I too was getting tired of holding them, they were tired of keeping themselves up. I just didn’t want to lose all my balloons…nor did I want to lose all my marbles.

I want to say that I did the right thing (I really hope I did), but no matter what, I think I will make it work. I like to think that the world is not one way or the other, and through whatever decisions you make, there are roads that can eventually lead back to wherever you feel you made the wrong turn. Unable to understand that concept before, I am beginning to realize that now.

Letting go of thoughts and plans you had for ages isn’t easy. Right when I feel like I haven’t put in enough work or haven’t tried hard enough, I have to remember that a little over a year ago, I couldn’t do basic math. I couldn’t remember how to speak, and I could not transfer myself to the chair next to my bed. Let alone be doing Advanced Functions, writing these blogs, and being able to wake up in my own bed not worried about forgetting how to walk, talk, and be me. Well, I’ll be damned. It seems we have a miracle here.

So sure, I can’t do things as well as I hoped, nor am I able to pursue some of the things I once dreamed of doing, but I can do others things. I can do new things that I never imagined myself doing, and there’s a sort of insight that people always seem to say I have that helps me understand and help others. And hey, shouldn’t that be everyone’s final goal: to be able to make the world or even just the people around us live happier? Live better? I think it should be.

A basket half full is better than a basket so overstuffed that the bottom breaks. In order to prevent myself from breaking, I chose to take things one step at a time and continue to develop my insight and adjust. It’s really difficult to try to know yourself, but it’s a good thing that I tried to figure things out early on. Things could have gotten a lot worse for me, and I’m glad I reached out. At the end of the day, you’re not gonna get anywhere unless you take the first steps yourself.

It’s never easy saying goodbye, but in addition to the goodbyes I’ve said to my friends, I had to say some extra goodbyes to parts of myself that I never thought would just leave.

And in the words of Natasha Bedingfield…

… the rest is still unwritten.

There may be some difficulties in your path, but that doesn’t mean you should stop trying. Sometimes, there is beauty in the difficult times/paths. That’s why it’s harder to get through, so for those that do succeed, it’s really, really worth it.

Castle.

…the most precious things inside your castle are not jewels and treasure, it’s your ideas, your thoughts and opinions, and possibly most important of all – your emotions.
Protect them with all you got.

I like to think of this new dent in my skull as the moat that protects my brain, my castle. Inside this castle of mine are all the things that you would dream of in any castle. It has a king, the master of decision-making and the ruler of all my final decisions. It has a queen, the supporter of the king and the one that makes him rethink and make decisions carefully, and offer her love and support in his decisions. There’s of course a joker that is clever and funny, but like the one in King Lear is wise and thoughtful. Inside this mind stores a princess who is naive and vain but also a prince that is rebellious and tired of listening to what the king tells him. There are the knights that keep watch and protect the castle from bad thoughts that seem flooding in more and more often, and also a chef that cooks up goodness and heartiness when things get tough. There are the servants that serve loyally and that are there to remind the royalty that there are always those less fortunate, but somehow make it work. And of course, there is a draw-bridge that blocks off bad people and bad thoughts unless I am willing to let them in – giving me a second chance to decide and truly think about everything that I let into my mind and thoughts.

It’s complicated inside. Sometimes certain people are louder than the others, and at times, it gets so loud that everyone might as well be silent. Before everything happened, I never thought I would need a moat. I let people come in easily, but let them go even easier. I didn’t know how to hold on to those I wanted to stay and how to solely let in the ones I needed. Now, although not perfect, I have a better sense of what to do, and I hope you also begin to rethink your own castles. To better protect your mind, thoughts, and feelings, because the most precious things inside your castle are not jewels and treasure, it’s your ideas, your thoughts and opinions, and possibly most important of all – your emotions. 

Protect them with all you got.