I feel like I’m losing myself. I’ve quickly transitioned from a summer fraught with wedding plans, family stresses, and a job that had me crying at my desk every day into a fall that has me worried, sick, and crying in my classes every day. I feel like I’m being tested: do I trust myself (my body, my heart, my mind) or do I trust the perspective of the people around me? I think the answer is both, and that is the problem.
It’s clear that I need to sacrifice something, but what should I choose? Should I sacrifice the things that are most life-giving to me, for the next eight months, for the sake of a piece of paper that may or may not be useful in the end? Or should I sacrifice my credibility in the eyes of the people I love in order to recover myself? I need to make a decision, and I’m running out of time.
Someone close to me told me this week that I’m never happy, that because of my inability to finish things I will never be taken seriously, and that maybe school just isn’t for me (which I translated as: I’m stupid). This person had very good intentions, but their words were wounding. The morning after talking to them, I awoke sick, took the day off, and fully intending to do schoolwork wrote a picture book instead. The story is about a little girl who is continuously being told to do things she doesn't want to do, and always does them because she is fearful of disappointing the people around her. Then, one day, she just can’t do it anymore. She decides to trust herself: to trust that she knows herself best. And then she slowly begins to reclaim herself. I need to trust myself right now. I know in my heart that none of what this person said about me is true. Rather: if I’m not happy, if people don’t take me seriously, and if I’m floundering in school, it means that I haven’t found my place yet.
Can I be true to myself and continue on this path of finishing a diploma for the sake of having credentials? I think I know the answer, but am terrified of acknowledging it.