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Thursday, January 1, 2015

The upside of feeling down

They say sadness improves your memory. I've read that somewhere, anyway. And I believe it! The two void years when I was an engineering student weren't exactly years of vacuity. That's the time I took up reading (a good habit); I started learning languages, improving the ones I'd already known, or thought I'd known; and I started observing people, the most important person of which/whom is myself. Put simply, it was the period of time that shaped me into this...

During that time, however, I couldn't see clearly. I'd lost hope entirely. I thought losing all of my previous, rather childish, interests was a function of losing interest in life. It was partly true, though. But only partly.

The part I "liked" the most about my depression is what I call "parental-blackmail immunity". You know how when your mother wants you to do something and, in return, promises to make you something you like, for instance? That doesn't work when you don't like anything! I say "parental-blackmail" but it includes all kinds of reward/punishment systems. You are suddenly a grown up, a thoughtful person. It's when you realize how really weak we human beings are.

A bit about me

A few years ago, I was depressed. Like, really hopeless. (I know, bad topic; I hate talking about it, too.) It all started when I finished high school (Tawjihi is the Jordanian name for the last year in (high) school). I was really excited to have finished my schooling. I had high hopes of going to med. school. My grandfather, my financer at the time, had promised me that. I even started watching House M.D. in preparation. I'd savor the thought of becoming a good student at university, a prominent one. A smart one...

As it quickly transpired, however, my grandfather was no longer willing to make good on his promise to me. He said my father told him not to support my (expensive) studies. At that point, everything changed. At that time, "changed" for me meant "collapsed". I enrolled in a nuclear engineering program that I refused from the very beginning but never detested. From the start, I decided that I would not go on with that thing no matter what. I couldn't study well, of course, and consequently "scored" badly. Towards the end of the second year, I kind of dropped out of school.

I actually stopped going to school because I couldn't take it anymore. I'd already tried changing my major every single semester, but to no avail. This time, I'd had it: either I'd change it or leave. The months between my surcease of attendance and my actual conversion were among the worst in my entire life. I did absolutely nothing! I thought about nothing, really. Nothing but this particular subject. Needless to say, a lot of weeping was involved in that period of my life.

I considered pharmacy. I considered forensic science. I considered linguistics. Anyway, when the time came for applying, I actually filled in a form and submitted it to convert into pharmacy, but--thank God--for some reason I asked the registrar (a very nice person!) about medicine, and, for another reason, mentioned dentistry. "You can't apply for medicine," he replied, "but you'll be accepted in dental school." I dismissed the first application and filled in another with celerity. It might appear a quite thoughtless decision at first, but I never regretted it.

A few weeks later, I was accepted as a dental student. That did serve to end my "misery" at first--I scored really well in the first year--but my depression came back and bad thereafter. During my second year, I started to think about how my entire life would be delayed because of the two years I'd lost. Whether this was the reason for my low grades in that year, or it was the other way around, I know not. Almost no one supported me at that time, and I don't blame them, for I was quite repellent. Depression is a very nasty thing to deal with. Especially by yourself.

I can say that I'm OK now. Alhamdulillah!

Vacations are bad!

I have been "off duty" for a whole week now, and I haven't done anything worth mentioning. My vacation started on December 25, last Thursday, and, along with it, my state of boredom. I usually try to be very positive and optimistic, and it seems that studying actually helps. It keeps my mind distracted, for starters.

The thought that I can't seem to rid my mind of these days is that I'm growing old (nearly 25 years; OK, not really old!), and I still haven't achieved anything in/with my life. I still refuse to give in to depression; I don't feel hopeless or even pessimistic, I'm just grumpy! In other words, I feel like an old man. Although I'm usually an undemonstrative person, I sometimes feel desperate for support, which makes me feel like really bad! You can't ask for the love you always reject. I am obviously emotionally sick, somehow.

What's really strange is that I almost never feel bored. NEVER! There are tons of things to do/read/learn/eat! I'm just not in the mood for any.

I'm truly sorry for spreading my negativity!