In Transition

Today, a lot of things changed.

I moved out of a place I shared with my toxic best friend (whose best friend status is currently under evaluation). I moved in with 4 strangers whom I will live with during my final year of undergrad. Both my Summer courses began (I attended neither due to the move). I guess that’s not very many things, but it feels like everything.

I need my routines. My routines comfort me. My routines ground me in reality. But I’m in a new house now, and I’m taking different classes, so things will be different. My routines have to change.

This might sound bizarre, but I simultaneously feel like life isn’t real and that I’m falling off the edge of a cliff. I don’t know what to do with myself. What do I do tomorrow morning for breakfast? When do I shower? Do I need to prepare more for Wednesday’s classes? I just want to lie in bed on my laptop forever.

I was excited to use this Summer to fight my social anxiety, so I could be a happier person by Fall. And I still plan to do that. But everything feels so scary right now.

I can’t explain it. But I just feel so afraid. I’m afraid to socialize with the people in my house. I’m afraid of how my social situation will change as I rethink my closest friendship. I’m scared my Summer courses will be terrible, and that I’ll be miserable all Summer. I’m afraid to get a part-time job, and then have to do it. I’m afraid of finishing my undergrad next year. I’m scared to go to grad school, which will probably be in Germany. I’m scared to get a real job after that. I’m afraid of everything I’ll ever have to do for the rest of my life. And I thought facing my fears would feel liberating, but I’m remembering all these times I was forced to face them repeatedly and my anxiety did not improve. That’s where the depression sets in, where life starts feeling like a long list of things I don’t want to do. Usually, my efforts to avoid anxiety (like isolation) cause depression, so it’s a bummer when it’s caused by the anxiety itself. Like what am I supposed to do to live a full, happy life?

Clearly, my thoughts are now devolving into chaos, so I will take this opportunity to politely excuse myself from the internet.

Sarah

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Summer Anxiety

Yesterday, I wrote my last exam for the term. It is officially “Summer” for me. I should be thrilled, right? Or at least relieved. I am neither of these things.

I am no longer anxious about school, but I now have much more to worry about. Firstly, I will be moving back in with my dad for the months of May and June, a situation which hasn’t been great for my mental health in the past. I am dreading the loss of independence and the constant hyper vigilance I will feel living in a place that doesn’t feel emotionally safe.

Next, I need to get a full-time job this Summer, and I have yet to find one. I have sent out dozens of applications, leading me to believe that I am fundamentally undesirable as a candidate for employment. I have hardly paid any of my tuition for the previous school year, and I need to balance my student account before I can register for Fall classes. I need to make enough money to pay off $4700 in tuition, plus pay rent in July and August. Asking my parents for money is an option, but it is an absolute last resort. My mom was not happy when I quit my part-time job in October to focus on school and my mental health, and I do not want that decision to be thrown in my face.

Ironically, while the prospect of not finding a job is terrifying, so is the idea of finding one is just as scary. Working makes me incredibly anxious. I worry about whether I am doing a good job, whether my coworkers like me, what clients/customers think of me, and how long I will be able to cope. Anticipating a Summer of feeling this way makes my heart race. I hate it so much.

So I am on Summer “break”, and while my classmates and roommates seem ecstatic, I am filled with dread. As much as I love the warm weather and bright evenings that lie ahead, I already miss the security and predictability of the school year. September can’t come soon enough.

 

Sarah