This Is My Life, Now

I've officially hit rock bottom, and I love it.  Among the other personal tragedies and sub-crises in my life, I'm out of school, don't have a proper job (yet), and have about the same level of responsibility as my cat.  I think I've developed an eating disorder, where I eat and snack all the time like a fat person in a skinny persons body.  But life is good, even when it's not so good.

This is one of the perks of being an eternal optimist.

I wake up, put on my fancy business attire, and apply for 

You have to make a good impression, you know.

 I take a quick lunch break, then I write for hours until it's time to do menial work for my current employer.  I get home, attack my cork board, and mind-map the television show I'm piecing together like a freaking maniac.  This is my life now.

My entire life, I've always had to do something for someone else; I always had a plan, a set trajectory, and requirements I had to perform to get to the next level of something. 

I liked the structure, because it felt like I was getting somewhere - from point A to point B - but for the first time ever, I'm in a space and time that is allowing me to do whatever I want to do, and I think that is fantastically special.  Although, actually coming up with a plan of action was a daunting and frustrating endeavour.  

What was I going to do with all of this free time?!  

I went through a period where all I wanted to do was travel and go away, and I'd come up with a new place that I wanted to travel to every day, and every day, the location became more and more outrageous and exotic.  I'm not belittling those dreams or yearnings to globe trot around this beautiful little planet of ours, but at this time, I've realized that the need, or rather,


of travel was more like a panic button to fill a void of

not really knowing what to do, or where to focus all of my ample reservoirs of energy. 

So, no...not travel.  Not yet. 

Then, I went through a phase of feeling absolutely useless to society.  I started to compare myself and my achievements to people I knew, or even barely knew, and felt inadequate.  Do I need to get a 9 - 5 to be relevant to society?  Do I need to fall in line to


Why is it so hard for me to find a job, when I feel so capable and talented?  These are questions I can't fully answer, but after thinking on this for some time, I found it counter-productive to compare myself and my successes to others.  This was...


.  I'm a competitor.  I was an athlete before I was a scholar, and when I was a scholar, you had better believe I took my G.P.A


seriously.  What I realized is that success is not comparable, because it is relative; what is good for one person, might not be for another.  What is good for my friend, is not necessarily what I need or want.  So, I stopped worrying so much about



When I stopped worrying about achievement, it became very clear that this time is open for me to transform into all sorts of creative


- I am allowed to spend my days thinking of characters, instead of formulating an argument on cultural construction, gender dynamics, literary devices, and the like.  My education has influenced the way I think about writing, and how I continue to write, but now, instead of learning about things that have already been done, I can use those things to create new people, worlds, and forms that don't yet exist.  I can learn what I want to learn, and create my own curriculum.  I make my own syllabus, assign my own homework, and discipline


I get to be my own teacher - making graphs and sticking pins into cork boards. 

It's not glamorous, yet.  Not unlike the average person, I am still apprehensive about

the unknown -

the next step after the one that's right in front of me. However, that's a sure way to needlessly trap oneself in thought.  Believe it or not, anxious as I am to be my own version of success, I'm having the time of my life putting the little pieces of the big picture together, and I think that in the end, it will be more beautiful than the abstract thing it looks to you now.  For now, I'm embracing the abstract.  Abstract as in, one day, it will all miraculously make sense.  This is my life, now.

Arianne TongComment