» some end of summer musings.
  • some end of summer musings.

    Aug 05th • Posted in academia, health, love, personal, travel, writing

    I haven’t felt like writing a lot lately, as evidenced by the lack of blog posts and correspondence. I figured I might as well jot something down in order to convey the thoughts that have been racking my brain over the past couple months. With the passing of July and midsummer, and now into the advent of August, I’ve been trying to move a couple steps forward, but my mental health and stamina cause me to unintentionally stumble even more steps backward. It’s been difficult and I notice that I’m finding every excuse to not commit myself to studying like I told myself I would. I struggle constantly with how best to take care of myself, and how that applies to intentional goal-setting and reaching. I imagine that at this current moment I feel like I’m coming across as really strange, and that the way I’m writing is unlike my normal self, but still, nonetheless, I’m writing my thoughts down. And that is something I should be proud of myself for doing.

    I’m learning how to trim the fat out of my life. The older I get, the more I realize that people move on, and the more I grow apart from them. Not to say that isn’t a good or bad thing necessarily, but I’ve changed a lot in the past couple of years since graduating from university, and I’ve prioritized things like building a home, stumbling my way through a post-baccalaureate program, and giving myself permission to forgive myself when some of those things fall to the wayside– especially because I’m not always cognizant of how detrimental ignoring my health can be. Things like going out on a Thursday night and being drunk the entire weekend until Monday morning have lost favor to staying in, cuddling up next to my dog and eating a home-cooked meal with my partner. I am still learning how to manage everything else in my life. Friendships can be difficult due to distance, but I’ve had plenty of practice over the years– given the fact that I’ve basically moved every two or three years since graduating from high school. What can I say? I’m a nomad at heart.

    That being said, growing up is still a strange thing. Especially when you’re facing the aging process by watching friends and family get older and learn how to “adult.” I watched one of my childhood best friends get married to the love of her life and the whole ceremony and celebration spun around me in a whirlwind. I was reunited with friends I haven’t seen for years– even a former best friend, who didn’t acknowledge me at all, was there. Female friendships and their demise will always be a strange thing to me, but unlike the contempt we probably once held for each other (I haven’t spoken to her, nor have I heard any of our mutual friends mention anything on her side, so I’m not sure how she feels about the entire encounter,) there was nothing on my end except for this sense of bittersweet nostalgia. I am very much a person who feels things very intensely, but I’m trying to learn how to let things go peacefully. While the fact that I tried to interact with her and received nothing on her end bothered me, I sincerely hope that she has good things coming her way in her life and sometimes people serve no purpose in your life anymore. I’ve carried that sentiment with me this entire summer with former lovers and friends alike.

    As much as this summer has been about letting go, it’s also been about making plans. I have never been one for prophesizing about the future– at least not in the traditional sense– but this summer has been a great jumping point for that. I haven’t been taking the future very seriously, or at least not in a way that I should have been. Another application season has come and gone, and I still find myself in flux. I’m learning how to forgive myself and be kinder to myself for that. I’m trying my best not to compare myself to my peers, who are headed off to their prospective medical schools, or at least applying this cycle. I just couldn’t do it this cycle for a number of reasons that I’ll have to explain to my parents. Probably with the help of my therapist, who has been working on this with me for awhile. Wish me luck.

    On the other hand, if there’s one thing I’m grateful for, it’s the fact that I’m learning how to build a life with my long-term partner. It’s very cheesy, and I hate writing about him because our relationship is our own and I don’t like sharing that much (it sounds too corny and sentimental, and that seems yucky to me) but after about three years together, our relationship has evolved in ways that I did not anticipate. We are constantly growing and evolving and learning how to be our best selves. We are now dedicated dog parents, which is something I still have to pinch myself over. We have shared a home for over two years and we still haven’t gotten sick of each other. The questions I initially had about our relationship still stand, but they’ve progressed in a way where I feel like he and I are trying our best to compromise and talk our way through it. “I” has slowly progressed into “we,” which is sometimes disgusting but feels right. He urges me to be my best self, but we both realize his capacity to help and love is only so much. I need to work on myself more in order to be a better partner to him. I’m trying my best.

    I do find it odd that the deeper I get into a partnership, the more I need to focus on myself and my weaknesses. Nothing is ever perfect, but all things considered, my partnership with T is probably stronger than my own relationship with myself at the moment. Sometimes that makes me sad, but I think that’s the mental illness talking. The burden of all of these health issues are exhaustive and demanding. SSRIs really suck and the side effects fluctuate to the point where I just want to chuck them all away and not depend on them anymore. But I know that would probably be the worst option for me at this point, so I keep sticking to it. I’m trying to be more honest about where I’m at in my life, and I’m also trying to be kinder to myself about it. These two things are difficult to reconcile, especially with outside influences trying to sway me one way or another. At the current moment, I’m trying to end summer positively: being content with what I have, knowing that I am a work in progress, and cultivating the relationships I currently hold and getting rid of the ones that no longer serve me in a positive manner. Summer will eventually turn into fall, fall into winter, and winter into spring, spring into summer, and the cycle will repeat over again. But hopefully this time next year, I’m at least one or two steps closer to a brighter future and my ultimate goals.