It’s another one of those nights, so I thought I’d continue on from one of my earlier posts and answer some more journal prompts. My original post is here, and the journal prompts are from here: https://pageflutter.com/52-self-discovery-prompts/
11. What do you enjoy most about your favourite hobby? How can you incorporate that into other parts of your life?
I suppose my favourite hobby is music. The thing I enjoy the most about it is mastering a new little thing that I’ve spent a long time working on: a new song, or a scale, or a difficult chord. But at the same time I enjoy the mindlessness of it. I like to get to that point where I don’t even have to think about what I’m playing anymore, because it’s all muscle memory. In terms of incorporating that into other parts of my life, I guess I just need to feel good about little bits of progress that I’ve made. I need to remember that what feels easy to me now was once difficult, and what is now difficult will one day be easy.
12. Describe a day in your life that was especially enjoyable. What made the day so good?
On the first of December, my sisters, Elina, and I met up with one of our very close friends. We wanted to have our own special Christmas together. We went to Winter Wonderland, went on a rollercoaster, ate pizza and chips, and then headed back home. At home, we made a great big Christmas dinner together and decorated the house, and then watched a Christmas movie (Klaus – which is an excellent movie by the way). I think what made it so good was a mixture of really great company, and also the feeling of taking something into our own hands: we subverted tradition a little bit by celebrating Christmas on the very first day of December. And it was a day that was totally ours. We could do whatever we wanted.
13. When you think about your future, what do you fear the most?
Death. It’s always going to be death. I feel like I’m never going to experience enough of life to be ready for it. The thought of not existing, not having thoughts or feelings or memories or senses, just complete nothingness… terrifies me. Time feels like it’s ticking away too fast, and every milestone I hit is just a reminder that what I’m working towards in the end is nothing.
14. When you think about your future, what do you hope for the most?
I just hope that I’m happy. I want to keep the friends I have and meet new ones along the way. I want to find a partner who I love and will happily spend the rest of my life with. I want kids who I’ll raise well and who will be happy too. I want to put out good into the world, and for my existence to be a positive thing.
15. Describe a time you mistreated someone. How do you feel about your behaviour, and what would you say to the person now?
There are a lot of times that I’ve mistreated people. One time stands out to me, not because I feel like it was the worst I’ve ever treated somebody, but because I never apologised. When I was sixteen I found out that a boy I was friendly with had a crush on me, and wanted to ask me out. It terrified me, because not only had this kind of thing never happened to me before nor had I expected it to, but I was deeply in the closet. I wasn’t out to anyone at all, and I was scared that it would all come out because of this. So I ghosted him. I ignored his perfectly nice messages, and when I saw him in person I acted like he wasn’t there. Looking back now it seems ridiculous – I could have just kindly told him that I didn’t feel the same way, without bringing my sexuality into it at all. I could have stayed friends with him. But I panicked, and I did the wrong thing. Now I can’t find him on social media, so I’ll never have the chance to say that I’m sorry.
16. Write about a missed opportunity you wish you had taken. What could you do differently next time?
Sometimes I wish that I hadn’t dropped out of university. Logically, I know that it was probably the best thing for me: it tired me out, I didn’t talk to anyone, and I was so miserable there that I ended up breaking down crying on the ground in a train station. Now I’m getting good grades and I have friends who I would never have met if I hadn’t dropped out. But there’s a piece of me that aches when I see friends going out and having a ‘normal’ experience. That could have been me. If I wasn’t so ill. If I’d tried harder to get the help I needed before it all became too much. It’s not an irreversible mistake. I am planning on going back to mainstream university for my master’s degree. Part of me worries that the same thing will happen again, and I’ll have to drop out a second time. But I’m going to do everything I can to avoid that: these past few years have been a chance for me to develop my independence and my coping mechanisms, as well as my independent work skills. I’m going to do all I can to have a good time this time around.
17. What do you look for in a close friend? Do you have those characteristics?
I look for friends who genuinely appreciate my company and actively want to spend time with me. People who will make the effort to reach out, and assure me without me having to ask that I am wanted. Unfortunately, I don’t think I consistently have those characteristics myself. I do genuinely appreciate peoples’ company, and I do want to spend time with them. But when it comes to making the effort to reach out, I worry that I don’t do it enough, that I’m neglecting someone and making them feel like I don’t care. Another issue I have is with communication: I’m terrible at showing people in words that I care about them and want them around. I try to make up for that in actions. I’ll make someone a thoughtful gift or plan an outing that I know they’ll love, or something like that. But sometimes I don’t think it makes up for it.
18. Describe a time a friend went out of their way to help you.
One of my friends who I can always count on to help me through difficult times is Sapphire. I remember one time she was sleeping over at my house, and I received some bad news while she was there. I tried my best to hide the fact that I was upset, but she saw through it. She didn’t make me talk about it, but she and Marta stayed up late with me that night being ridiculous and taking ugly selfies. Around the same time, she noticed that I was posting sad things on social media and so she gave me a little cuddly toy dragon, so that I had something there with me physically when she couldn’t be.
19. Are you a spiritual person? Describe your beliefs and/or doubts. How do those beliefs affect how you live your life?
I do not believe in God in the slightest. Or anything supernatural. Or superstition. But I still find spirituality kind of important. I think when you’re thrown into a world as random and meaningless as this one, it’s no wonder that religion becomes a thing. People need something to believe in. They need an answer to the unknown. It kind of kills me to not know things; I’m such a nosy person. But I just have to accept that there are many things out there that I’ll never know. In terms of spirituality, I like to believe in things, even if I know I’m just kidding myself. I like to think that things happen for a reason, to find connections between events in my life. I like it when I have a dream and then it comes true, because I can believe that I predicted it. Even though there’s the logical explanation that my subconscious mind picked up cues from real life and threw them into my dream world. I like to collect clovers because they’re lucky, and goblets because they have a story. It just makes things a little bit more fun.
20. Discuss how the people in your life make you feel. How do you perceive yourself after spending time with them? How will that affect how you spend time with them in the future?
I think I’ve been antagonising people a bit too much lately, and so a lot of people have made me feel not that great. But there’s also a lot of good feelings too. I’ve been getting along with my family a lot better lately. I feel like my mum is such a good, selfless person, and that I’ve only just realised recently how much she’s done for me without asking for anything at all in return. I’ve also recently noticed how much my dad loves me. Which sounds utterly stupid, because of course he does. But it’s not something I think about much. In general, my friends make me feel good. I finally have a group of people who actually genuinely seem to want me around, and that’s a feeling I’ll never get enough of. They’re also so much fun to be around, because they’re all so different, and I always end up doing different things depending on who I’m with. I go on crazy adventures with Hera and Poppy that aren’t actually crazy at all, but feel like they are: ice skating and walks and trips to the beach. With Sapphire I play video games (Minecraft is a good game and I’m not ashamed to admit it) and walk our dogs and spend an entire day pretending to be a Sim. With Selene and Eve I write stories and go to book conventions and talk about fiction and bake. With my sisters and Elina I bicker and get on everyone’s nerves and binge watch countless TV shows, and pretty much do everything I do on my own, but with them. There are many more that I could talk about, but right now I’m finally starting to feel like I might drop off to sleep.
This has been entertaining. These questions are fun, because they give me an opportunity to reflect on lots of things, but in a much more controlled and directed way than usual. I look forward to doing the next lot.