Sometime last week I spent a bit of time in a coffee shop instead of going to one of my classes. I just wasn’t feeling it. I wanted to be alone for a little while, even if it was simply an hour, with my thoughts. It probably hasn’t been that long since I’ve contemplated life but it just feels like it’s been quite some time.
Being in a sea of seventeen and eighteen year olds just constantly reminds me how much I’ve changed since my first year. Well, my first first year… the one that was three years ago. I mean there arbitrary moments when I feel as if I’ve done absolutely nothing with my life… that I have yet to succeed in something worthwhile. But in retrospect, I actually have. I succeeded in growing as a person.
Yes, cheesy but hear me out.
I know I’ve said this before but I’ve really settled into the person I am, the one I was so scared of being before. I became more self-aware and selfish, but in a good way I swear. I haven’t completely stopped self-sacrificing, I must admit. However, I’m not more aware of my own personal needs and the fact that those are just as important as others’. For once I actually like myself and care about my well being.
I refuse to allow any sort of negativity in my life. Part of the reason I was stuck in that rut that I was in last year is because I allowed others to get to me, to make me feel like I’m less of the person that I really am. Not too long ago I realized that no one has the right to do that to me. Of course, it’s one of those “easier said than done” kinds of things because everyone constantly encounters negativity. I don’t avoid it – because who can? – but simply try to accept it.
I learned that falling short isn’t such a bad thing. I came to believe that the only failure is the failure to try. In all honesty, I’ve learned much more from my shortcomings. I’ve had more setbacks in the past three years than the other eighteen combined. And all of that just helped me become the person I am today. I was forced to gain new perspectives and adapt to the fact that life is unfair. I haven’t become a pessimist or anything; I just found a way to be more realistic.
I have hopes and dreams that I pursue. I’m actually striving to be someone, and not the someone I simply thought I wanted to be. I’ve somehow found the motivation to strive for what I want in life. I don’t feel like I have this huge obligation to choose a certain path. And maybe those aspirations will change over time, but as long as I keep pursuing them, that’s alright with me.
Most importantly, I’ve allowed myself to feel. Back then I was completely numb to anything. The only thing I truly felt was physical pain, which was one of the reasons why I inflicted it so much on myself. I just wanted to feel something. Now I’ve learned that I can never truly help how I feel; I just have to accept and learn how to deal with them. Obviously bottling it up was a terrible idea… When I finally opened myself up, I found deep empathy for others. I can be a bit misanthropic sometimes but I contradictorily still care in the long run. Does that make any sense?
Aside: Apparently “contradictorily” is a word. I thought I made it up.
Living with bipolar disorder, I actually do feel quite a lot. But my feelings have always been so extreme that I’ve refused to face them out of fear of spiraling out of control or just sounding irrational. But I think the most difficult thing I had to face was accepting that this is something I’ll have to live with for the rest of my life. I still struggle with it. I have moments where I wish I could live a relatively normal life… a life where I don’t have to take a cocktail of medication every single day, a life where I can feel like I actually fit in, a life where my relationships aren’t so volatile…
The thing is… I can’t change my diagnoses. All these things I’m struggling with now? Well, I’ll always have to fight them. I’m sure I’ve mentioned that several times in the past year I’ve had this blog. It’s just something that I feel like I have to keep saying because I believe that if I keep repeating it to myself then I’ll finally truly accept it. Do you know what I mean?
It’s going to take much more time but until then it’ll be one of those meditation mantras.
Well… that’s all for now I guess. Tomorrow’s Monday so I wish you the best! It sets the tone for the week.