Growing up, I think we all had an image of what we envisioned our lives to be as adults. The nice job, car, partner, maybe even a few kids. And sure enough in this lovely day and age of social media, we are a scroll away from seeing all these people ticking these milestones off of their lists. I am happy for them. Truly.
In some cultures (like mine), getting married is one of the biggest achievements for a woman. Here you were, calculating what you needed on your final exam to graduate, then fluffing up your resume for a job to get experience, that requires experience to apply – when all you needed was a husband! Forget the aunts at family reunions, I’ve had ‘friends’ (very loosely used), who have recently gotten married and because of this act like they are somehow more successful than those who are not. Or maybe we are working on other things! Like getting through half a dozen donuts in one sitting. THIS should be applauded. You just have more people to answer to now, Stacy.
I say this like I am too busy succeeding in other areas, when currently the biggest achievement for me is the days I leave the house. That sounds like a sweet deal – unemployed, able to laze at home all day binge-watching Netflix, changing out of my daytime pyjamas into my nighttime ones, and because I live alone – doing absolutely nothing with no one to judge you. I too, once, had all these aforementioned ‘life goals’, I trained as a pastry chef over the course of a few years, and have always dreamed of opening my own dessert bar. But in between juggling Helga, *debilitating bi-weekly migraines, that have been around for a good 10 years* and Thelma, **Helga’s mental health counterpart,** reality has recently hit hard these past few months, and I have succumbed to the fact that although this could happen later on, maybe when there is a break-through in medical research or some divine intervention, right now this will have to remain as a dream. Doing anything at all that requires a daily commitment is not on the table, forget that, the days Helga turns full bitch-mode, so does my sensitivity to light and sound, that even scrolling through Insta is not possible, let alone Netflix! And the icing on the fucking cake, is that I am not able to eat cake! (or anything) during this time, because, lucky me, I have nausea to join the party too! What is life without food??
So what do I do all day? Being in a dark, cold, quiet room is not exactly the definition of ‘living your best life’. It is day-dependent. So in attempts to not jump off of a building on grave days, (don’t worry, I am in therapy), on better days I have been on the path to ‘find myself’. I say it in speech marks because a) it is harder than it looks, and b) so far I don’t even know if I like what I am finding! For example, I now do yoga which is meant to center you, relax your mind, except all I have learnt so far is I sweat in more places than I thought possible, & muscles that I assumed were working fine (or rather working better than parts I knew were weak), betray you when you are holding a pose by frantically twitching! And then my anxiety somehow manages to kick in because it’s not going right, and it just all ends up far from Centered. BUT, I will stick with it, its the only form of exercise I can do without triggering Helga.
As well as this, I enjoy travelling! You can tell I’m really trying this whole ‘Eat, Pray, Love’, thing. Most recently I went to Greece, as much as one would HOPE your body will let you enjoy just a few days (who are we kidding), out of the 11 days, I had 5 bad days, and by bad I mean I couldn’t get out of bed! What I have come to terms with is that because those days will come, the only way to survive is to make the good days count. Sometimes it feels like I’m mentally and physically drowning and there is no way out, all you see is darkness (it could also be because I can’t switch on the lights), but since I’ve stopped comparing my timeline of life with others around me, there is a small hope that some day I too, at my own pace, will be able to check things off my list. For now, I take the days I smile as an achievement, (and eating half a dozen donuts in one sitting), who knows maybe one day it’ll be a full dozen!
Sending love your way,
Emma B ♡