Tea Time: Happiness is a Struggle

Thanks for meeting me at my flat. There’s absolutely no way I’m going outside in that kind of weather. I’m freezing! But then again my room is colder than it is outside for some odd reason I haven’t managed to figure out so I apologize for that.

Anyway, have some tea. It’ll help. I’m sure I drink much too much every single day but a nice cup of tea is just so great on the -1C days. Yes, I decided to change to the metric system finally. It’s just a lot easier these days. Plus, I can practice my math skills because I do all the conversions in my head. I’ve gotten so great at pounds to dollars, kilograms to pounds (the weight kind), and celsius to fahrenheit.

Just call me a math whiz… or not.

So how’ve you been? What have you been up to since I’ve been gone? I’m your only friend so probably not much, huh?

I’m only pulling your leg… yanking your chain.

Oh, my sweater? Quite nice isn’t it. It’s almost Christmas… almost…

I’ve been spending much of my downtime reading and simply contemplating life, mostly because I’ve been a bit depressed and anxious lately. There’s no one specific reason for that. You know when you just have those days? Well, I’m having those weeks. No, I’m okay. I swear.

I came to realize this one very important fact about life: happiness is a struggle. The one thing that we all have in common is that we all want to be happy. Most of us expect it to just come knocking on our door or have it handed right to us, but that’s definitely not how life works. Besides, think about how boring that would be.

Life isn’t fair. You can agree with me on that, right?

Exactly.

It’s easier to think that working hard and being a good person – whatever that means – is an instant ticket to our own definition of happiness but the sad reality is that it isn’t. It’s not enough to want. And sometimes it’s not even enough to give it your all. Sometimes, you put every ounce of your soul into something and still fall short of your goal. Apologies for possibly depressing you. You’re giving me that look.

But like Rocky said – Yes I’m quoting Rocky. You know I love that those movies! – “It ain’t about how hard you hit; it’s about how hard you can get hit and keep moving forward, how much you can take and keep moving forward. That’s how winning is done.”

Falling short by no means implies you’ve failed. I’m one of those people who believe that the only way you fail is if you stop trying. Giving up is the only way you can fail.

There will be times when you feel like you just can’t win. Remember my 2013? Yeah, that was absolutely horrific… I know there are going to be a lot of times when it seems like everything you’ve been doing means absolutely nothing because you can’t seem to turn things around. My only advice is to keep fighting.

Here’s another quote for you. This time it’s from Winston Churchill. “If you’re going through hell, keep going.” I’m sure by that he meant that eventually you’ve get through it, right? Well, that’ll be how we’ll both interpret it.

My original point was that happiness is something that we all have to work for. Yes, it seems like it comes easier for some and yes, I agree that’s not fair. Just don’t focus too much on them. Besides, you don’t know what they personally have to go through. We all have our own scars and stories.

So that’s one of the things that’s been going through my head lately.

What else? Aren’t you tired of listening to me, yet?

Well, okay then…

I managed to see a mental health counselor, not a psychiatrist or a therapist or anything like that. He’s just one of the student counselors that I’m seeing temporarily while I’m waiting to get a psychiatrist at the hospital. He’s actually been quite helpful, especially since I mentioned I’ve been a bit down lately.

Then I realized something else.

The reason I don’t like telling people about my bipolar disorder isn’t because I’m afraid they’ll judge me. Anyone like that doesn’t deserve to be in my life anyway. It’s because I’m afraid I’ll be treated differently. Do you know what I mean?

I have this feeling that if people know that I have some sort of mental health problem, they’ll start treating me like… I’m not a regular person. That sounds a bit strange but I’m not sure how else to put it.

It’s not just me being paranoid. I know my friends treat me differently since they found out. I get this feeling that they’re constantly walking on glass – is that even the correct expression? – around me so they won’t set me off. Eggshells! Walking on eggshells!

Anyway, yeah… it’s like they think they could say something that could make me snap… which may or may not be true.

Now that I think about it, I guess it’s understandable. I can be a bit volatile…

At the same time, I don’t want others to sugarcoat things for me.

I don’t know. I guess I should stop my rant before I keep going on and on and on…

Tea refill, then it’s your turn.

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