Once upon a time, I was a college student with a full scholarship, wondering how many credits I could balance at once, figuring out all the different degree paths I could take, having a taste of companionship, yet still naive, for I still felt optimistic without real thought of what was coming. I felt like the next step would make itself known when the time came. I had patiently calculated a number, and dutifully knocked it down one by one at each arrival of night. ~1470 days 'til I do...
Once upon a time, there was no more once upon a time, for the time was now. I was a year ahead. Now I've spent two years making little to no progress [so it seems]. I'm mostly a pessimist. And that stupid number sat on my priority list for so long, that it developed this kind of importance that makes this year carry a weight capable of shattering a spinal disc or two [I'm pessimistically weak, remember?]. 1470 days? Uh, how about 52?
Oh how time flies!
I wanted so much by the age of 23. I wanted to have a self-sufficient job. I wanted to be married. Above all, I wanted to be far, far away from New York. I am nowhere close to any of these things.
I did already acknowledge the naivety-plus-stupidity behind that decision - to expect to have so much by such a young age - but the fact remains that I at least hoped I would have accomplished something of importance by that golden number, and I haven't.
How proud I was of myself for finishing college at 20, and yet here I am, less than two months away from being 23, with barely any progress made since the day I wore my cap and gown. I may as well be graduating this June.
Days like today I feel like I've hit rock bottom. I feel unhappy with myself - definitely, entirely with myself - because this is the result of a series of choices I made when I could have sworn there was the prettiest light glittering at the end of the not-so-dark tunnel. I did this to myself. I chose to switch majors, and drop a minor, and isolate myself from people, and dump my hobbies, and treat happiness like the good chinaware.
Once upon a time, I decided I didn't want anyone to hear me sing. Once upon a time, I decided I wouldn't like to dance. Once upon a time, I decided I didn't want any friends. Once upon a fucking time.
The list goes on, and on and on. Some days I think maybe I would have liked going out to a club to dance. Other days I wonder that maybe, just maybe, I would have thrived in the setting of people, being actively involved in a community. But once upon a time, long ago, I decided I didn't want that, and I've mentally matured with these rigid guidelines in place and have carefully dug a rectangular, deep trench in Central Park, suitable for my shoe-box coffin.
I'll be twenty-three and nowhere closer to anything I want to achieve.
These thoughts began surfacing today after watching a presentation my brother gave, in a community space with a program that he was one of the founders of, making a difference in said community. I heard presentations by many people with inspirational backgrounds, that brought themselves from total confusion to immensely rewarding success. I felt motivated at the time of the presentations.
But the thing is, hearing other peoples' success stories - because I'm a pessimist - simply reminds me of my current state of success - or, rather, failure. It reminds me of how I've achieved nothing I hoped to achieve by now, how nothing I do is ever good enough - not for anyone, not for myself. It reminds me of how I still sit in a rank-smelling train four days a week, going to a job where I'm getting paid less than $10 an hour to do tasks I could have done straight out of high school.
When it comes to writing, all I have to show for it, besides my glorified degree, are this blog and a series of incomplete projects.
And what career do you get with writing, anyway? Blogging? Fiction writing? Freelance work? Let me spend hours doing something that does nothing for my financial state while crossing my fingers that the Tooth Fairy will pay my pillow a visit tonight.
Hell, if it did, there isn't even a tooth there. That says something.
In any case, all of those careers stem from initial forms of self-employment where you need to take the initiative - yourself. And that was another decision I made once upon a time: that I would let my shyness dominate me, and choose to be the follower.
Truthfully speaking, it isn't just today that I've been feeling down. It's a few days lately. I'm simply fed up with how pathetic my progress is. Worst of all, I'm fed up with my life's setting: New York City. I hate - yes, hate - it here so much. Just when I think I couldn't be more disgusted about this place, I wake up another morning feeling even further down than the night before. I want out so badly, but you know what?
I can't do a damn thing about it. Not in the time frame I would like to.
So I sit here and sulk, watching that infamous birthday loom closer and closer, and I dump my frustrations onto my blog because I can't contain it in my head anymore. And now I just feel...drained. But then I guess that's better than feeling completely disappointed in myself.
Ha - I'm too tired to be unhappy! I guess being tired has its perks after all.
I hope you, whoever you are, are feeling better than me. And I hope you're where you want to be, too, both literally and figuratively. I'll try to feel better just so I can share nicer things on here, because who wants to read something negative when they're already having a bad day?
Unless, of course, you're the type of person that feels better about his self when he sees other people failing. In which case...at least my failure serves some kind of beneficial purpose to you. At least there's that.