I don't feel like writing it all up again, so I'm just going to cp the email I wrote to my parents.
I'm disabling comments. If you want to talk to me about it, IM me or email me or call me. If you do any of these things tonight, though, know that I might not answer you, at all. I'll probably be rude. Sorry. I don't want to think about this any more tonight. I haven't thought about anything else in days (well. Except for friday night, when I had enough alcohol in me to introduce myself to people and not understand how they knew my name two minutes later. Not that this takes much alcohol with me.) I am going to spend the rest of the evening watching, in this order, Princess Bride, Love Actually, Romeo and Juliet, and either Serenity, Pride and Prejudice, or The Lion the Witch and the Wardrobe; making icons; comment bombing with Sirius if anyone appears to comment bomb with; and doing nothing else until I am too exhausted to do anything but pass out when I go to bed. Not leaving a minute for thinking. So. Talk to me about RP, cute boys, movie trailers, etc, and I'll probably talk back. Talk about this, and I'm not saying anything. Not because I don't appreciate your care and concern, but because I am completely out of anything remotely resembling steam.
I’m not happy here.
There. I said it.
I’m not saying this to alarm you, and it’s not something you need to get on the phone and call my doctors about. It has to do with my depression, yes, but I think that’s only a factor, and not even necessarily the main one.
What I mean is that the sense of fitting and rightness that I used to have here is entirely gone. I love my friends, yes, but there’s a sense of distance; my classes aren’t giving me the type of fulfillment and joy and interest that they should. And they should; they’re great classes with good professors. I’m just not feeling it any more. I want to be; I want to be in school because I love it, like I used to and like I should and like is normal for me, not because it’s what I think I’m supposed to be doing according to the rules of life.
To put it more succinctly, I’m pretty sure that this is not where I’m supposed to be right now. Ninety-nine percent sure. And the unsure one percent is, I think, my habitual need to doubt myself rather than a legitimate sense that I’m wrong.
I need time- time to come to terms with myself and my needs, who I am and what I want and where I’m going. With everything that’s happened in the past year. With my disease. With every single thing in life, I guess. I realize that that’s what last semester was about (and this seems like as good a place as any to say that I’ve come to the realization that as much as I wanted to come back here and as much as I think I needed to come back here, I was honestly happier and felt more in the right place this summer than I do now.) But- and you know this about me- I do things at my own pace and in my own time, and last semester was not a decision I made myself. I’m not saying that in an accusatory manner, though I know I have in the past and I apologize for that; I’m simply saying it as a fact that I think is very relevant. I didn’t choose it, and so there was a part of me- an unconscious part; please understand that I do not knowingly and willingly sabotage these things- that couldn’t accept it and did not benefit from it.
This is me trying to change that and take it into my own hands so that I can grow and get what I need out of it. And as I say, what I need is, I think, time.
To get to the point- I’d like to take a year or two off from school. I’m not entirely sure of a time-frame at this point; as this demonstrates very clearly, you never know where your life is headed. However, it is fully my intention to return to school and get my degree, maybe even do post-graduate work as has always been my plan, and to do this before very long; I just want to do it when I can love school again. When I’m ready to be here. (The ‘here’ I use is general; whether I’ll return to PSU or find a new fit, I’m also uncertain at this point. Thank god this is PSU, and credits are infinitely transferable.)
That being said, I do not want to live at home. At least, not for long. While I love you guys and there’s a large part of me that wants to live in my room and have my mommy and daddy take care of me some more, the rational part of my brain that’s making this decision thinks that’s a very counter-productive idea. Part of this is about me and growing up and coming into my own in a way that I so far have not really done. Part of my reluctance to live at home while trying to do that is that I think the simple fact of a change will help immensely; the rest is that I suspect it will be far, far too easy for me to avoid growing up while remaining in my childhood room with my parents there to look after me. This isn’t anybody’s fault, not mine or yours; it’s just that we have a well-established routine, and I’m the child, and I don’t think we can really break out of our roles effectively while I’m living in my bedroom. In fact, I know I can’t. One of my major issues is a very, very hard time taking charge of myself, and I honestly don’t think I’ll be able to do it with my mommy right there. I work best under necessity and I always have; the very fact of being on my own would necessitate a certain amount of maturity and taking charge, and I really do feel that I have the ability to rise to the occasion. I need, however, an occasion to rise to.
That being said, I’d like to find an apartment somewhere in the Levittown-Langhorne-Penndel-Whatever area. Tiny and cheap, of course; I’m not expecting the moon and stars, here, and I know finances are an issue. I want to be close enough to you guys to come over for dinner and see you very regularly or whatnot; I just don’t want to be able to allow myself to become dependent and let you handle things for me. (Incidentally, I’m not saying I want to move out instantly, but within a few months. Two or three, to put a deadline on it, I suppose.)
I need your help for this, of course, both financial and otherwise. I have no idea how to go about it, and while I know I’d need to actually DO it myself, to prove to everyone including myself that I CAN, I…still need help, and can admit that. Making a budget, finding an apartment, figuring out how to pay bills- all of that is stuff that I’d need your support on. As for financial things, while I have my own account, plus my sovereign account (which I understand is meant for emergencies, but, well, a major life-change fits the bill, in my opinion,) and while I am fully aware that I’ll be needing to get a full-time job to support myself, I imagine that I’ll still need monetary support from you, at least to begin with. I would fully intend to pay anything you gave me back, and would work with you to create a schedule of repayment. In addition, I wouldn’t expect you to save my TAAP account for my return to college; that’s money you guys earned and saved based on a plan for me, and I’m changing that plan of my own free will with full knowledge of the implications. I hope that using those funds to pay for your own continuing education- harp, etc- would make taking on the financial burden of helping me to support myself more easily bearable. I don’t intend this as a form of repayment; as I said, it’s 100% your money and I’m so grateful that you are/were willing to spend it on me. However, I know money is tight and I hope that freeing up those funds for the classes I know you’re both still taking would help, at least to some extent.
As for a job, as I said, I fully intend to work full time. I will, of course, try to return to Starbucks, but I’m prepared for that to not work out. If it doesn’t, I have sort of an in at Barnes and Noble, what with three close friends and one close friend’s father working there; if that doesn’t work, well, there are a lot of businesses and offices in our area. I can type and file. If worse comes to worse, I’m sure I can waitress. I’d rather not, but c’est la vie. I will make it work.
I know you’ll be worried about my social life and my tendency to isolate myself; in that respect, this is part of why I want to stay so close to home. You guys will see me regularly (…very regularly…mom makes good food, and you have my bird…) and, as you know, Dana, Jo and Jacob all live close by and come home regularly on the weekends. As much as I love my friends here, those three are my best friends forever, the people I’ve gone through so much with. I’d honestly like to be close to them again, in proximity as well as emotional distance. Plus, working full time, I’d be out and around people frequently.
I hope you understand that this is not a decision which I reached easily or without a lot of thought. It’s hard. I’m scared. I’m not going to lie- part of me is screeching, ‘not be in college? What the hell? You HAVE to be in college!’ But I have put an exhaustive amount of thought into this, and I really think it’s what’s right for me at this time, scary as it may be. I need to figure some stuff out. I need to regain my love of learning and books and school and all of that, which is something that’s only going to happen with some time away from it. I need to figure out how to be happy, with my life and with myself, and my heart is telling me that this is the way. I need to find myself, basically.
This could easily be seen as a way of avoiding life and going forward. I honestly do not mean it as such. It is, in fact, I think, the only way for me to go forward. And I want to. I’m ready to. It’s time for me to grow up. And this is the way I need to go about that.
Please don’t respond to this today; sleep on it, at least, as I have done quite a bit now. If you need to email, IM or call me for your own peace of mind to see how I’m doing, of course you can, but I really do think we should wait a day or two to discuss this. We can talk about other things. Babies. You know. Just know that if you do call, I’ll undoubtedly cry; this is hard, and I’m a little scared and a little sad. This isn’t what I planned for myself. But I think it’s what I need. And ultimately, I am fine, I am dealing, there is no reason for you to be worried.
We will, of course, discuss this in-depth over thanksgiving; maybe I should have waited to bring it up in person, but I think I might burst from the stress of waiting if I did, or talk myself out of this decision out of fear of confronting it, and besides, it’s always been easiest for me to express myself in writing.
Before you ask, no, I have not discussed this with my therapist; it’s a decision I needed to come to on my own, I think. I will, however, be printing a copy of this to take to my appointment on Wednesday, as well as any reply from you. You’re welcome to show it to Maureen, forward it to Cheryl- whatever you need to do for your own peace of mind. I do understand that this effects you as well as me, and that it’s something that needs to be gone over more than in a letter. This is just breaking the ice, as it were.
Thank you for listening, for taking the time to consider this, and for everything. I love you.