We all have those days.
You know what I’m talking about: days when you are so stressed you wonder why you were even born, why somehow you were dealt all of Fate’s crap cards in one blow, why you deserve this mess that is your life. Days when it feels like if you dare to face reality even for a little bit, everything would immediately spiral out of control and then–shattering, oppressing, hopeless darkness.
Under these circumstances, the effects of all these “blehs” are actually synergistic in their power to break us, even if it’s just temporary. Sometimes, for me, it becomes so depressing that, unable to be grateful for anything in my life, I literally start numbering off my various sources of woe inside my head and thus subject myself to even greater distress. This is the point when I break into tears.
I think I probably set the ultimate record for crying in campus public space. I mean, let’s be honest here, it’s not like crap plans its arrival around the times of day when you’re within the comfort of your own home. I certainly don’t enjoy crying in public, although I do slightly enjoy the refreshing feeling of overwhelming despair whenever students pass by me with blank expressions on their faces, and pretend to not have just witnessed the very evidence of the transient, primordial nature of humanity. It worsens the feeling loneliness and isolation, and makes me disappointed in people in general.
When I’ve tired myself out and wept away most of my inner angst, I usually calm down and start to think more clearly. Over time, I’ve come to realize that after feeling broken or wounded, we try to resist pain by inducing apathy upon ourselves. I start regretting putting too much faith into people, into fate, into all that I had set out to make my life to be, and the loneliness I feel usually stems from that stereotypical feeling that “nobody cares about me”.
Sometimes this leaves me bitter (actually, more like all the time), but when I do end up coming to my senses, I would ask myself: “And what makes you think they should?” The honest truth is that, in this world, you are the only person you can fully depend on. Sure, you can be there for whoever you want, give love to whoever you want–be it your parents, your best friend or the love of your life–but giving is only the easy part of unconditional love. The tough part is learning to not expect reciprocity–and sadly, we often do and we do it subconsciously. In that sense, we each reserve the right to be just a little bit “selfish”, because it is impossible to see the justice in unconditional love when we end up depriving ourselves of what we so freely give to others around us. Simply put, nobody is going to save you–you either do it yourself, or you are screwed.
So this was my epiphany of the day, as I stood outside the third floor reading room in Robarts, hyperventilating into my cell phone and rapidly wiping my face free of tears every five seconds: appreciate the love and care that others give you, but when your world collapses, don’t just automatically expect anyone to rush to your side and take you to a better place. Instead, put all the energy used for self-pitying into rebuilding your life, and make each breath count. You really are your own best friend, and if you don’t take care of yourself, nobody else will*.
*I also learned today that non-waterproof mascara doesn’t run as badly as they do in movies! Seriously, CoverGirl Volumnexact Mascara is awesome.