How has your year been?
I'm 20 but I still believe in the whole novelty of a new year - as if a change of date on the calendar means anything significant. I still believe that entering a new year means we bid goodbye to the past year and everything that comes with it - the sweet memories, the bitter heartaches, the successes, the failures, the gains and the losses. But deep down we all know that's untrue. No matter how bad your year has been, a new year won't erase the awful year from your life. Whatever happened or didn't happen to you will contribute to defining your life and ultimately defining you.
The point where I started to try to understand the concept of time was back in 2013, a year when I started to see 'time' in people and 'time' in places. When I would reset my goals and my outlook at the beginning of every year, lose hope in the middle and try to make the most of what is left of the year towards the end. I feel like this is how adults, *young* adults, for a majority of their teenhood live their years. Until some of us get overwhelmed by life and just start to see days as Monday-Sunday, and not milestones and markings with grand chapters.
Skip to a year later, 2014, potentially my first encounter with depression. I say potentially because I understood more about what depression is and what it feels like - and boy, did I identify with it. It was not severe but living did seem optional to me and I would always settle and not expect happiness from most things, cause I thought happiness didn't happen for people like me. Sad, I know. But through this I learned to feel disgusted at how poorly I treated myself and how unkind I was to my body and soul. How I treated myself then affected how I treated other people. I wasn't the most open or supportive or helpful or kind or REAL person to be around. I tend to fake who I was to fit in or compromise my standards and values making it a phase in my life of undetected confusion; I was confused, but I was oblivious to my own confusion. Makes sense... the blind getting confused.
I was confused long enough to not even have words to explain to myself, let alone anyone, what was up with me. Dont get me wrong, I talked. About these things. To my friends. A lot. But they were just words that even I wasn't sure was right. Like, I could be talking about a boy who really made me feel worthless to my friends and make it sound so humorous, as if I was hurt-proof. I could be talking about the night I downed 13 panadols in my room while my maid just sat by and watched like it was some stand up comedy. I was talking because I obviously needed help, because I was obviously reaching out, but silly little me, I thought making fun of dark moments of my life solves it all. (It does sometimes, but... yeah sometimes you just got to know when's the right time)
The following year, 2015, is a phase in my life I recognize as 'sunrise'. The year that 'things got better, for the better'. Let's see... what happened in 2015?
Well, I finished my International Baccaleaurate (IB) Diploma Program which used to cause so much stress in my life. Making it to the finishing line, with no permanent bruises, was a big weight off my chest (at the time). I was also excited to leave highschool because, truth be told, a need for a fresh start was imminent. Having that opportunity closer to me that it ever was, was a highlight. To celebrate graduating from highschool, my friends and I went on a gradtrip to a Koh Samui (an Island in Thailand) and it was one of the sweeter memories from highschool, I would say. I also moved back to my homeland, Malaysia. After spending 4 years in Thailand, in which, may I add, a place where I 'grew up' - In the sense where I learned some 'life lessons' (lol), who I was (or rather, who I wasn't) etc. Going back to my homeland, after those 4 years, seemed like the right thing to do at the right time. Then, the most exciting part... University!!! What's a better fresh start than entering uni in a place where no one knows you, am I right?
Uni in a nutshell, has been... hell. But there's no other place I'd imagine myself to be in.
Uni's type of hell is an unorthodox type of hell. Sufferings still do happen, but the suffering in uni's hell is the kind that couples up with... 'joy and relief'.
Here, I met so many incredible people, whom have in turn, made me a better friend, a better sister, a better daughter, a better student and overall a better person. I am probably not doing these people enough justice with my explanation but all I can say is, my everyday was filled with laughter and positivity. Uni, Monash especially, makes it difficult for you to feel positive. I'm serious. I'm not speaking for myself. Without my friends in uni, I don't even think I could have made it this far... and still sane! And still loving life and wanting more.
Fast forward to a time we all find most relevant; now. 2016.
This year has been a real roller coaster ride. Like the ones with the high peaks and low dips; I achieved things I was always so afraid to do because I thought I wasn't good enough, discovered strengths that used to be my weakness, overcame challenges I would usually have given up on, curled up into a ball at nights trying to cope with the pain in my chest, looked in the mirror some days and hated what I saw, looked in the mirror some days and fell in love with what I saw and the list of peaks and dips go on and on and on...
I'm grateful that I am able to feel sad to leave 2016 behind but at the same feel excited for the upcoming year.
I'm grateful. That I made it through it all.