I’m definitely one of those people who loves to make a bit of a song and dance out of their birthday. It’s guaranteed that I will have multiple dinners, outfits and drinks to celebrate but as it’s an event that only occurs once a year, I think it’s justified. I definitely wanted to make my 19th birthday special because I’m afraid of turning 20 as it seems like a very ‘adult’age to be. Now that I’m in the last year of my teens I won’t be able to get away with nonsense such as eating chocolate cake for dinner, for much longer so I knew I had better make this year count.
If you’ve read my blog post titled, ‘The Best and Worst Year of my Life,’ you’ll know that 2018 was a roller-coaster for me. Unfortunately, the end of it was a complete downhill run so I was trying to look to 2019 as the year I would get my act together. This wasn’t necessarily the case in January as I was still relying on a few people for any sense of self-worth, even when they gave me anything but. I also kicked the year off with a bang when I was diagnosed with pneumonia and pleurisy and spent over a week huddled in the same spot, barely able to move without being in horrendous pain. However, it did mean that I had my very first x-ray.
I spent the the first month of 2019 losing internal battles with myself over what I was worth to other people. Yet, after spending hours online reading negative comments written (inadvertently) about me, I finally snapped. The side of my brain that knew I didn’t deserve to be treated like shit finally won over the side that mentally tortured myself. Since then, I’ve grown a bit more of a backbone and I’m starting to fight back when I know I’m being treated unfairly.
Over the past year when I felt at my lowest point, I constantly lied to myself and to others that I was doing okay even when I wasn’t. I continually reminded myself of all the reasons why I shouldn’t be liked and desperately hoped that someone would try to prove me wrong. It was easier to deal with my problems when I could pretend that they weren’t there so I tried to bury my thoughts as much as possible. I kept trying to prove a point to people that I was happy and thriving even when those people weren’t worth it and didn’t deserve my time. I know that I need to be the only one who understands that I’m doing well and if others can’t see that, it shouldn’t change my mind.
The difference in my mood is evident from the fact I’ve attended far more of my classes this semester compared to last. It’s what any student should be doing but as I missed the vast majority of my tutorials last semester, to actively take part in discussions about the essential reading is a new experience for me. I’ve started to act and feel like a functioning student even though I still leave essays until the very last minute. I even went to a two-hour maths tutorial on my birthday whilst being slightly hungover, another first for this year. If that doesn’t prove my dedication then I don’t know what does.
I had two essays, two assessments, a group report, a group video presentation and a festival to help produce in March alone. It was far too much work in such a short space of time, especially when I still tried to keep up with readings and homework. Why I decided to take four modules this semester instead of the recommended three is beyond me. I am proud to announce that I only had one panic attack over my work load and not so proud to announce that I cried in relief after my final submission. With only one week of classes to go, I’m looking forward to getting back into blogging, photography and socialising outwith classes now that I will have some free time.
I’ve got so much to be looking forward to in the next few months and I’m not going to lie, I’m mainly referring to all the coffee and cake I’m going to consume during the exam period. I can’t believe I’m almost finished my second year of university and that I’ve found something that I enjoy as part of my course. I came close to switching degrees at Christmas so who would have thought that it would have been the maths aspect of my course that helped me decide to stick with it. No doubt I’ll despise maths next year when it gets really complicated but it looks like I’m going to be a music technology student for the rest of my university days.
Ever since my birthday, I’ve remembered that it can sometimes be pretty good to be me. It feels like I’m starting to pull myself together once again and I don’t know if that’s because my birthday wishes came true a little earlier than I could have expected or if my rocky patch is truly over. I know there are times when my mood is going to crash, as I learned the hard way last weekend when I had a major panic attack but I know they’re not permanent. Being 19 is treating me well so far and I’m going to cling to this positive outlook for as long as I possibly can. Who knows, maybe it’ll still be around when I’m celebrating my 90th birthday?
Thank you to all those people who have stuck by me whilst I’ve cried more times than I can count and hated myself more than I thought possible, I love you all. I hate to be cheesy and finish this blog post on a quote but it’s one that really struck a chord with me since I first heard it and definitely kept me going through my darker days.
“If you’re going through hell, keep going.” -Winston Churchill