It’s twenty-two minutes past nine. I was meant to begin at eight again. Have I set myself up for failure by starting so early? Did I secretly know that it would be too hard, that I would fail, that I would feel terrible? Is this inadvertent self-harm?
It was a struggle waking, and I decided to browse through my illustration Instagram posts. The guys I met at the workshop are interested in my work; so I wanted to see what they’d see when they had a look at my social media profile (you know how you forget you actually ever did anything with your life?)
Now I’m having a self-induced identity crisis. I can’t work out who I am. I can’t see any correlation between the minutes, hours, days that pass and who I am. I keep telling myself that people are fluid, time is fluid, change is always happening. It doesn’t sink in though. My throat has opened up and my lungs are screaming inside of me.
I’m tense, distressed, my head is all over the place. I’m going to start crying, I can feel my breathing grow ragged and a lump rising in my chest. All because I looked at my old artwork…?!
What a tough morning. I didn’t get any work done even though I said I would do something before my appointment. However, I made it to the bus stop on time; but the bus was late, and it drove straight past me.
Yep, I cried alone at the bus stop. I went home. I nearly gave up and got back into bed. My friend told me to trust her, that I would feel worse if I didn’t go, and I could take as long as I needed, but to just go anyway.
Start again. Round two.
So I biked it instead and on the way some boys wouldn’t move out of the way of the path and pushed me into the road. When it rains, it pours, huh? So I was in a super lousy mood, half crying, half cycling to my appointment, feeling sure that I was in the pit of despair and everything was crashing down on me one by one.
I sat in silence for a long while, but eventually got talking and we started to work through the morning and my apprehensions about my upcoming project, and my self-imposed challenge.
Long story short, I left on a high. I was feeling good, and even motivated. I set up a meeting with the manager of the store, to add a little bit of pressure to my deadline by making it official. (SCARY).
When I got home, I needed a lot of support from my sister to be able to start implementing the stuff I’d talked about at my appointment. Getting started is a huge hurdle, and there is so much fear surrounding a project. Too many ‘what ifs’ to even comprehend. I could spout them off for all of eternity.
It was a long day, with problems hiding around every twist and bend. I’m thoroughly exhausted, both mentally and physically. I can barely write this out, (sorry for the poor quality) – and I’m already messing up my head thinking about everything else I’ve decided to take on board lately.
I really, really hope I don’t waste these opportunities. Before I decided on this challenge I was one impulsive click away from buying a return flight to Romania; and thank heck I didn’t because I would have screwed myself over money-wise. (Yet another form of self-harm – spending money I don’t have on an impulse – fully knowing the implications are bad).
I’m really sorry once more for this terrible mish-mash of words and bad punctuation. I’m still adjusting to the ‘normal’ life of rising early, getting work done, seeing people, doing hobbies, having deadlines, pressure, stress… ‘Normal’ doesn’t sound very nice now I think about it…
I’ve gone from taking it one day at a time; engaging in minimal stressors, staying well within my comfort zone, and playing it ultra safe – to ‘working’ four days a week on seven different projects to sell at the shop, volunteering, agreeing to meet with friends (despite not knowing how I’ll feel), taking on two bits of work for an outside project, doing an interview, taking on a new window sign painting, and submitting illustrations and zines to be used in an exhibition.
Needless to say, my life hasn’t been this full and heavy for about a year now, and I still can’t help wondering if I’m doing all this as an elaborate self-sabotage method to induce a breakdown under the guise of something less sinister.
I’m not even going to write what I think about myself right now… It’s not pretty.