Note to self

“I’m not stressed. Just sick.”
The moment those words left my mouth, I realized just how true they were. I was unusually calm this week for all that I knew to be coming. In the back of my mind, I knew there were things to do but I just didn’t consciously focus on them. Somehow, I evaded anxious thoughts and irrational fears and wiggled free from the chest-choke (you know, that chest-crushing weight).

Now, I am in a terrible mood. This is what the week has culminated in. The main thought that consumes me is: what’s the point? Why do I have to take any exams and write applications for any universities? Why do they expect me to have my life figured out at 17 and know exactly where I want to be 10 years from now? On most days, I have trouble deciding what breakfast to have… Like, seriously what am I supposed to do? Why do I even care? Why am I doing the inconsequential things that I do? Why couldn’t I have just not been. All these cliche existentialist questions are nothing but pertinent to me right now.

I’m in the kind of mood where I don’t want to see people. I don’t want to be forced to interact with them, to entertain and smile and joke. Being around people, if only just one, takes effort. Because it’s not fair to the other person to not be engaged in the conversation and to retreat into your own little world (unless you’re both just sitting in a room and each doing your own thing). I don’t want to talk about my exam tomorrow and I don’t want to talk about the future. I want to immerse myself in the quiet of my own room, listen to my aircon and think.

When my dad mentioned the exam, I had to fight back tears. I don’t know why I feel this way and I guess that’s why I’m blogging. However, I’m determined not to make this post a rambling rant (although it begins like one). This is the post I will come back to when I feel demoralized and like I’ve run out of fuel. I will write this as though I’m writing for someone else because it’s always easier to give advice than follow my own.

  1. Whatever you’re feeling right now, it’s OKAY. It’s okay to feel anxious, nervous, worried, or guilty. It’s okay to not be happy- nobody can be annoyingly optimistic all the time. Don’t make matters worse by saying that you don’t have the right to feel the way you do or denouncing the emotions that you feel but can’t control. No matter what anyone says and no matter how many people have it worse (yes there are starving African children and people who live on the streets), nothing can make what you feel any less valid or real.
  2. Cry if want to. Do it, let it out and you will feel (at least) a little better.
  3. There’s a reason for everything. You may not see it now, you may not see it until you’re 80 or on your deathbed, but there is a reason that you have the God-given talents and spritual gifts that you have. You’re here for a reason and you are special.
  4. Chances are, you’re not the only who has ever felt this way. Somebody understands. God understands- stop running away from Him and let Him carry you.
  5. You are loved by someone. You have a family that cherishes you and friends who you’re lucky to have. Let them love you and realize that there is nothing you can do to make them stop.
  6. Turn failure into opportunity. Suffering is a trial- treat it as a lesson. You are weak and you are frail and you cannot rely on yourself. Be humble, accept help and rely on God.

“I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.”
Philippians 4:13

“Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.”
Philippians 4:6-7

Perhaps I can’t exactly explain why I feel stressed but I can change what I do about it.
Sobe xx

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