The most I can say about the past two weeks is that they have been nothing short of a roller coaster of emotions for me.
Dealing with disappointment, of not feeling good enough, has never been an easy thing. I don’t believe it ever is for anyone. In some cases, it’s something you slowly get more accustomed to, to the point where having people actually meet what little expectations you manage to maintain becomes a surprising thing. The sad reality is that this is something I am used to. Does it happen at every available occurrence? Of course not. There’s always exceptions. There’s a number of days where I’m perfectly happy and content with who I am, and then something always happens that forces me to take two steps back and try to push to be a better person. There’s a host of self-improvement issues I’m continually working on, and sometimes it feels like I’ve made progress. Other times, not so much.
It’s most likely why it’s far easier and simpler for me to focus on trying to help other people with their issues, because more often than not, mine feel so hopeless, and I’ve never truly felt like I’ve made progress. Compared to how I used to be years ago, I do feel more confident. But continually winding up empty-handed after getting my hopes up over and over again with a variety of things tends to wear me down. A lot.
But it’s something I enjoy. I love making people happy. I thrive off of it, because I know first-hand that there’s enough negativity in the world. There’s more than enough stress and frustration and sadness, and I don’t want to play any role in trying to intentionally add to that. And when you really think about it, being nice and friendly to someone can have significant impacts. It could prevent someone from making the mistake of dating someone who isn’t exactly the total package, for example, or helping someone make amends with a family member before they pass away. It can even prevent someone from killing others, or killing themselves.
Be kinder than necessary. Everyone you meet is fighting some sort of battle.
And if there’s anything I’ve learned about the downward spirals my life frequently takes, there’s often a few things that come sooner or later to bring everything around. Or at least back to where I was originally.
The first thing that happened almost two weeks ago was completely unexpected to me. I checked my Twitter notifications one day and saw a new follower with the Michigan tag in his screenname. I checked out his bio and saw that he played softball, majored in aviation, minored in Spanish, was bilingual, and had a familiar saying I’ve seen somewhere on Grindr, “If you treat me well, I’ll treat you better.” It hit me seconds later that I knew who this person was, and I kept saying, “No way. There’s no way this is him,” in complete disbelief. About a day later, he picslipped, and I proved to be right.
The same guy I talked to for roughly a day on Twitter last spring, that was, at the time, transferring to Western, who I hoped to at the very least become friends with and who later unexpectedly blocked me on Twitter and removed me from snapchat, was him.
Needless to say, I was shocked and confused. In my mind, normally when you block someone, it’s typically a sign you want nothing at all to do with them. After seeing him countless times at work last semester, I was tempted to say something but knew, or at least believed at the time, that he wanted nothing to do with me. Last summer when it happened, it frustrated me. A lot. But I had no way to try and talk to him.
Yet, the fact that he followed me and interacted with me was a sign that, perhaps, I was wrong. And after finally talking to him last week, I was very wrong, because he had blocked me on accident.
Out of all the possibilities I had considered, that one was probably at the bottom of the list. But it proved to me that sometimes the way I see something isn’t the way it actually appears, and sometimes it feels amazing to be wrong. And it was. And now that that’s in the past, I hope to actually get a chance to get to know him better. Unfortunately this is limited to periodically running into him whenever I work a shift at the caf, but who knows. I have a significant shortage of gay friends, much less friends in general, so the more friends I have, the better.
The second piece of good news is that I may actually be able to live with people I actually know in the fall! About two weeks ago, I received a call from my apartment complex asking if I planned on renewing my lease. If not, by the next day after 5pm, it would go up to $400 per person. If I renewed before then, it would be $339. Not wanting to run the risk, I renewed my lease.
A few days ago, I got the aforementioned news. This was the same issue I ran into last winter. I renewed my lease early, later found out there was a chance I could not live with strangers in the fall, and have to find a subleaser as I couldn’t simply have the lease canceled even though it isn’t in effect yet.
Last year, I managed to get a few inquiries about it, but nobody was seriously interested. One of my wonderful friends recently commented on my Facebook status and expressed an interest in it, so I’m keeping every finger crossed she’ll decide to take up the offer. The only thing is they’ve asked for another guy roommate. I have a few months at least to find someone. I’m really, really hoping I do.
Finally, I got an email Friday morning saying my trip for spring break has been confirmed! In less than a week, I will be on a flight bound for Amsterdam, Paris, and London, and I honestly could not be more excited. Some of the places I’ve read about in books and online are places I’ll actually get to see in person in a matter of days.
So far, I’ve only truly taken one trip by myself, which was last summer to spend a week in Alabama. My spring break trip to Disney World in my junior year of high school could also be roughly considered my first, though with the company of 80 other people and an array of protective parents. Am I nervous? To a degree, which is saying something with the normal amount of anxiety I have about various things. It’s not every day you get the opportunity to travel, much less outside of the country. It’s truly a once in a lifetime experience, and I intend to try and embrace it for what its worth as much as I can, because like every other good experience, it never lasts forever.
Eventually I need to force myself to believe that everything will, in fact, be okay, even if it doesn’t always appear like it’ll be okay. I should be more accustomed to the ups and downs, because they’re frequent. But for now, I’ll ride out this wave of positivity for as long as it’ll take me. I cannot wait to get out of the country and explore. Hopefully I’ll come back to America an even better, more well-rounded person.
It’s time for me to figure me out.