#08

Greetings. It’s been a long time. Almost three months, in fact. A lot has happened in my life and I wanted to keep up to date with this blog and log my thoughts, but I kept holding off for one piece of news before attempting to write anything. A couple of days ago, I received that news. It turns out I’m going back to university. I’ve been given an unconditional offer to study for a Master’s degree.

Back in April, returning to study hadn’t even crossed my mind — it was my new job that pushed me to apply. The money was nice, and I was finally able to move into a new apartment, but I couldn’t stand the work. I felt so inconsequential. I previously wrote of my life regaining some momentum due to my job offer, but I felt as though my existence was over when I started. I was in a job people stick with until retirement, and that thought ate away at me. The work wasn’t specialised, or meaningful, or motivating — it was just a job. I wasn’t fulfilled or invigorated — I was just depressed, and I wasn’t achieving anything.

I’ve had dead-end jobs before, but I could put up with them because I had a girlfriend. I had somebody with me every night who made me happy. Now I am alone, I have nothing to come back to after a long day’s work in a job that makes me feel so trivial. Lately, I find that one of my biggest fears is that I will live a life of no consequence, but at the same time, I am now free to do and try whatever I want. I have to live for myself now, and I’m not going to be happy unless I am doing something that satisfies me.

So I quit my new job after just six weeks. I now work part-time in retail and start my Master’s in September. If my timetable allows it, I am also planning to study Korean, as it is a language I would really love to learn, having already taught myself Hangul. Every week is full of ups and downs, and while nobody can really say what tomorrow brings, for the first time in a long time I am feeling optimistic.

However, while my personal life is heading in a better direction, my family life has been very strained these past few weeks. My Grandad passed away last month, and my Granduncle passed away last week. My thoughts have been with my Grandma, who lost both a husband and a brother. She is a wonderful woman and a large source of inspiration to me. I was very fond of both my Grandad and my Granduncle. The last thing my Grandad said to me, a couple of weeks before his passing, was regarding my new job. He spoke about it not being ideal, and encouraged me to do something more befitting of my talents. I wish I could update him on all that has happened.

I didn’t get the opportunity to see my Granduncle a lot, but always loved speaking with him when I could. I always remember one thing he said to me — I had recently finished college, and was stuck on how to approach life. I didn’t know what to do, but my Granduncle, he spoke very highly of education, and he said to me that it was something nobody could ever take away from you. That gave me clarity, and though I was in limbo, I felt as though my time hadn’t been wasted. I always remember that, and it is again very relevant to me as I return to study later this year.

They were beautiful people and I will miss them both tremendously. I can scarcely imagine a world without them, but they both lived long and fulfilling lives, surrounded by people who loved them, and I hope they rest well now.

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#07

It’s been a while — almost a month. I’m still kicking. In fact, I was offered a job just the other day. I’m waiting for some paperwork to go through and then I can start. I’m approaching it with a little trepidation, but I am also massively excited. My life is finally gaining some momentum again. The work isn’t particularly lucrative so I’m a little worried about how difficult it may be to find somewhere to rent, but I’m determined to make it happen. I can’t wait to have my own apartment and live my own life again.

One thing I’ve noticed, coming out of a long-term relationship, is how much my confidence has fluctuated. The first few months were awful — I felt like I could barely show my face to anybody. I was solitary and anxious. Then when I had to move out of my apartment and go about my way as a singular person, dealing with everyday life independently, I slowly adopted a sort of ‘who cares’ attitude.

My ex-girlfriend and I did everything together. We worked together, lived together and accompanied each other all over the place. I relied on her a lot — she was my comfort. When I lost her, my confidence and tranquility disappeared. I felt as though I would remain a husk forever, but I feel now that I have become a stronger person. Tasks which appeared daunting before no longer seem so bad and I carry myself, not so much with confidence, but with assurance and self-reliance. I used to exist as a unit — I had me and my love — now I exist alone and I feel myself slowly adapting.

I enjoy this newfound fortitude, but that’s not to say I don’t miss the past. Every day I yearn for those erstwhile times. Sorrowful feelings and thoughts pass through my mind every day. What pains me most these days is how she’s just moved on with her life, like it was no trouble at all. I’ve reached out to her, but she seems so disinterested. Was our time together really that inconsequential? It wasn’t to me. Despite the pain, I truly believe in holding on to those who were and are close.

But I feel like I’ll never receive any solace or closure regarding our relationship. Because of her, I will never truly be whole again, but I have said that I want to remain friends — that I want her in my life. I don’t want to feel like our time together was for nothing, I told her. Yet, she seems set on confining me to history. That really tears me up. It keeps me awake at night. If that’s the way it’s going to go, what was it all for? Twelve years seems like a lifetime to me, but apparently it was nothing much to her. I can’t believe that’s the end of our story. What was it all for?