Pages

Saturday, 20 December 2014

self-indulgent-end-of-term-rambling

I am trying in a number of ways to make logical sense of the past two months. My first term at the university countless relatives and teachers told me I was unbelievably lucky to get into, which I spent all summer looking forward to arriving at.

Sometimes, I count all the beautiful moments I’ve had here: finding a way out onto the roof of our accommodation, running across the perfectly manicured front lawn late at night, sitting on benches by the river in the first week with bottles of cheap wine, talking for hours. The walks back from through my empty lecture site in the evening, listening to Kate Bush. The city itself, the buildings and the parks, the swarms of excitable tourists fighting to get pictures of the place in which I now live. Looking back on them, these were exactly the kind of stereotypically ‘magical’ moments I wanted. 

I can’t ignore the worst parts though. The first week I spent not eating, hiding in my room, counting down the days until the scheduled ‘fun’ of our freshers week was over so I could throw myself into essay writing and lectures, something which at the time seemed simple and easy. All the times when I came back after a night out with people on the edge of a group of friends and sat in bed unable to move, hysterically certain that I couldn’t do anything, that I wouldn’t be able to survive here.

Other times i try and look at it logically, to see how much I have achieved, how I’ve improved. I’ve managed the workload. I’ve connected to people, conveyed my opinions, made small talk with strangers, faced confrontation and lived among people I barely knew, when at home I could hardly bear to let anyone else into my bedroom. Overall, just having survived the shock to my system of carefully structured solitary preferences and routines. Small steps, but things I wouldn’t have thought I could have faced six months ago.

But most of the time, the only way I can describe it is as strange. Bizarre. A combination of exhilarating and alienating which I can’t quite figure out if I enjoy.

When I talk to people, when I call my mum or my friends to catch up, I am happy. I tell them everything that’s been going on, because I now have things to relate to them. I feel pleased that I can be interesting, and I surprise myself with the amount of things I am doing when I say them to other people. These moments, I feel truly grateful for where I am, and I don’t hesitate to share this with people. But then that’s where the catch is though. I love this place, but I don’t like being here. I love my beautiful new surroundings, but I am uncomfortable with my presence amidst them. I feel dwarfed by them, and I can’t shake the voice at the back of my head, every time something happens which I thought I wanted - ‘But why me?’

I know this is how most people feel. Its impossible to be at a place with such a reputation without feeling insecure. I can keep going. It will get better. Insecurity is either temporary, or so deeply ingrained in your outlook that you get used to it. 

7 comments:

  1. This post was super well-written and I really relate, even though I'm not in college myself. All of my college friends, however, seem to feel the same way- happy in theory, but not comfortable in their surrounding. It's curious...
    Anyway, your last sentence summed it all up beautifully. I enjoyed reading this.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. yeah its a weird thing! i think it gets better though, thats what people have told me anyway. aw thank you <3

      Delete
  2. wow, this sums up everything exactly i'm feeling about my first term at uni too. you've articulated it so perfectly! it's almost like i prefer the idea of my life at the moment to the actual reality of it? i think it's just something people get used to, like perhaps the actual feeling doesn't change much, but you just become more accustomed to feeling like that all the time?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. thank you !! yeah I'm currently at odds with how great my surroundings are and how i actually feel existing in them. Yeah i hope so! either way, i think it does get better

      Delete
  3. I adore your whole blog but this post resonated with me deeply. I'm starting uni in the fall and the level of anxiety that it brings is terrifying.

    www.lillylately.blogspot.com

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. thanks! starting university is a really weird time for everyone unless you're one of those strange people who can talk to literally anyone and even then I still think its a bit strange. but it does get better/more normal, I'm sure you will be ok!

      Delete
  4. I adore your whole blog but this post resonated with me deeply. I'm starting uni in the fall and the level of anxiety that it brings is terrifying.

    www.lillylately.blogspot.com

    ReplyDelete