Dear Diary

December 14, 2011

FINAAAAAAALS!!! Plus: the greatness of Heathers and cookies.

Naomi

For a while I’ve been struggling with anxiety, depression, and chronic fatigue syndrome. Being ill gave me the ability to check out of life for a while, which I felt I needed to do. But now I’m trying to check back in. I’m starting simple, doing things that most people take for granted, like going to the dentist and getting my hair cut.

When all of the bad stuff hit me, it was my fundamental instinct to not be involved with life, because I thought that would be easier. I took a year off from everything—I stopped going to school completely, and stopped going out almost at all. I thought hibernating like this would help me figure things out, but it didn’t really get me anywhere. In fact I feel like I dug myself in a little too deep. Sometimes I think it would have been easier in the long run if I had stayed in school, stayed the course, taken my A-level exams, and carried on into the next year, which would be sixth form, or college (what Brits call the last two years of high school). But I didn’t. Right then I couldn’t cope with it. I felt like I was at the edge of a precipice…and I took a step back.

Some good news this week is I am able to sit my exams in June at school (the one that I left last year) as an “outside student.” Last month I had a dream about being back at school. Could it have been a premonition? Now I’ll have to confront it in real life, and I’d be lying if I didn’t admit that it is a terrifying thought. All my memories of those paint-peeling classrooms and carpeted halls come to the surface…it will be odd to return to a place that I thought I had left behind. My feelings are so jumbled up over the whole silly concept of what is essentially a building (and what it contains).

I’ve been studying so hard over the past couple of weeks, and I’ve been so tired at the end of every day. I have become unused to that feeling. I know all of this is progress, but it’s nerve-racking. I am worried about getting all my work done in time, especially since I’m the only one keeping me on task and in check. The other week I had a mini-breakdown (hiding in bed and sobbing) and decided I wouldn’t do my exams after all. But little breakdowns are actually a good sign for me—they’re how I get out all my heightened emotions so I can move on. They’re a sign that I’m taking something seriously.

That feeling, of being serious about something, reminded me a little bit of the self I was when I was still going to school—tinged with hope and anxiety. I get nostalgic about that old me occasionally, but who doesn’t? All the time you are changing, and that means leaving good things behind as well as bad.

Something else happened recently. You know when you see a family member or friend and immediately your instinct is to say “I love you” out loud? The other day I looked in the mirror and had that instinct. I haven’t had it again since, but still, I paused, looked myself in the eyes and said it. And I meant it. ♦

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27 Comments

  • Adrienne December 14th, 2011 7:16 PM

    Hehe my high school’s finals are after the winter break… but then I get stressed out during the holidays, :\

    Oooh I’ll have to watch Heathers! Sounds like a good movie. :) I love the giant flower brooch(?) Veronica is wearing.

    • Dylan December 14th, 2011 7:24 PM

      My high school was that way too, it was so much better. That way I could enjoy the holiday season instead of being at school for 15 hours a day for 3 straight weeks. I miss making gingerbread houses on the last day before winter break, instead of sitting through 4 hour long art critiques.

    • Sphinx December 14th, 2011 8:33 PM

      Everyone should watch Heathers, seriously.
      Oh, and that’s not Veronica, it’s one of the Heathers ( Duke maybe?).
      Anyway, Winona plays Veronica, being all awesome and stuff!

  • Nomi December 14th, 2011 7:19 PM

    Our generation’s Heathers will be Mean Girls.

    • Miarele December 15th, 2011 12:25 AM

      YES! Recently one of my friends said she has never watched Mean Girls before (!!!) and everyone is so shocked that we immediately have a sleepover to watch the movie. She said that her life has now forever changed LOL

      But yeah, it gives a look of the modern social culture (albeit exaggerated) and it has spawned sooo many iconic references. And come on, who doesn’t love Mean Girls? :D

  • Freja December 14th, 2011 7:24 PM

    I think I love you, Naomi! I relate to you in the scariest ways and have to reflect for a moment just to reassure myself that I’m not blacking-out and writing these entries myself – ha!

    Best of luck “checking in”. It’s weird and frustratingly difficult (why does going to the grocers’ feel so complicated??) but you can definitely pull through it!

    • Naomi December 15th, 2011 1:28 PM

      well then i love you too!

  • regina December 14th, 2011 7:26 PM

    naomi, i am so proud of your progress. i know how amazing it feels like to be able to look at yourself after a long period of inner turmoil and finally like what you see.

  • puffytoad December 14th, 2011 7:30 PM

    Katherine-

    Those girls sound so odd! Anyway…

    COOKIE HUSBAND. yes.

  • MissKnowItAll December 14th, 2011 7:40 PM

    I read Naomi’s entry and teared up a little. Sometimes When I’m having a particularly crappy day I look in the mirror and tell myself “I love you”.

  • Marguerite December 14th, 2011 7:46 PM

    I never realized how much time i’ve spent worrying about things that i don’t care about! LIKE TODAY! I was walking, and it started sprinkling, and i got all worked up and worried cuz i thought i would start pouring, and then, i remembered, i like getting soaked by the rain…

  • talia December 14th, 2011 7:57 PM

    Heathers is priceless and lines like “fuck me gently with a chainsaw” and the use of the phrase “you’re beautiful” as a comeback should live forever!

  • Sphinx December 14th, 2011 8:31 PM

    Heathers is brilliant, I love every bit of it ( even the huge shoulder pads and hair)!!

  • Maddy December 14th, 2011 8:42 PM

    I just watched Heathers on Sunday!!! because it was oddly enough on my Dad’s netflix instant queue…yes both my parents loved it too. it was soo good! but there is this continuity issue in the first “suicide” that has been bugging me

  • Chimdi December 14th, 2011 8:48 PM

    Ummm… Heathers seems WAY too scary for me! I can’t even sit through The Night Before Christmas!

    Ohh, and I can completely relate with Ruby when she says sometimes she feels that she has friends just for the sake of having friends…Besides four besties of mine, I feel like that with a lot of people. Especially because I don’t share interests with most of my peers.

  • emilyelizabeth December 14th, 2011 9:55 PM

    Dylan, finals are stressing me out too!!! my left eye keeps twitching–i think it’s the combination of the stress, lack of sleep, and the massive amounts of coffee i’ve consumed. but i know what you mean about the solidarity of finals and actually kind of liking them.

    Ruby, i was just watching Heathers the other day because it is finally on netflix instant watch! such a great movie! glad you liked it!!

  • erin December 14th, 2011 11:04 PM

    I love Heathers!

  • MayiMayi December 14th, 2011 11:41 PM

    Katherine,

    Just wait until you’re 23…it will only get worse. However, I find that cookies and a good episode of 30 Rock usually cheers me up.

  • fizzingwhizbees December 14th, 2011 11:58 PM

    ugh. finals. SERIOUSLY. my last exam is tomorrow morning and i’m going to die.

  • Minna December 15th, 2011 2:10 AM

    I’m gonna get ma gurl gang onto him!!!

  • timelady December 15th, 2011 3:25 AM

    I love Heathers so much. I watched it the first time ages ago (before I ever saw Mean Girls) and fell in love with it. I love the dad’s ‘I don’t patronise bunny rabbits’ bit, and I don’t know why. Such a quotable film.

  • fran December 15th, 2011 11:13 AM

    Naomi – your story sounds exactly what a close friend of mine is going through/was going through last year. I really wish I could show her this and let her know she’s not alone. Thank you for giving hope that, even if it takes a while, things can get better :)

  • FashionHauties December 15th, 2011 12:02 PM

    This is a really relatable article. I definatley procrastinate way too much because I really could care less about what I’m learning. And of course there’s that little thing about how I end up cramming and doing all of my work at the end of each quarter… Oh. I just like to call myself procrastination nation. Pretty much all I do is blog. (BTW my blog is fashionhauties.blogspot.com). That’s my life.

  • pushelildaisies December 15th, 2011 3:23 PM

    Naomi, I know exactly how you feel. It’s like Plato’s analogy of man coming out the cave for the first time – you see that the world has managed to get on without you, and you realize that you best get livin’, cos no one is going to force you.

    I live in a basement apartment, and the current December Canadian weather is depressing as fuck. Hopefully I can find a UV light or something, but for the meantime, I keep on chuggin’.

  • Harriet December 15th, 2011 5:34 PM

    Sorry Katherine, I watched it…. and I cried.