Three years back I drifted off my cocoon to this entirely new city. Like any other outstation student, a bit confused, and a little homesick but a whole lot excited to gather everything I could, hoping that it was also waiting for me with open, welcoming arms.
It was going to be a journey so fine, so exhilarating, and none like any other. After all, that’s what everyone said, not to forget those Karan Johar movies that we believed at face value without an ounce of doubt. All this despite the quaint buildings, charred dreams, awkward smiles, and stranger vibes that engulfed me.
But. This is not how I would describe college now, for me it’s been far from what I believed. I’m not fine but I think or honestly hope that I will be.
Scared and tired at the same time, fearful of failure but zero desire to be productive, wanting to have friends but hating to socialize, that’s how I would describe myself and this is something that only I know. I appear uber cool one day and a homeless beggar the other day. That’s because I couldn’t gather enough will to get out of bed, face the sunlight, and people talking. For people who I’ve never talked to, I’m someone too conceited to even glance at them, my headphones always blaring but little do they know that it’s just a way to hide my entrenched fear of getting rejected, my insecurity. These are days when my sad and unhappy playlist offers me solace like no other. Seemed contradictory, didn’t it?
College is full of sleepless nights from unending assignments, failure in meeting deadlines, body shaming, average grades, constantly changing friendships and alliances, no home where I could return to after a hard, unending day, and the feeling of utter uselessness and worthlessness. I feel like I am unqualified for life in general. I want to reach the end but I also want to sleep through it all, or just evaporate into thin air because anyway, I am not that useful to anyone.
Like all the girls my age, even I had a huge crush at college. My heart skipped a beat; till today we pass each other in the corridors but I am not able to look him in the eye, let alone talk.
For someone who has to script thought before greeting somebody, fearful of judgment and stuttering, my past as a champion debater holds no worth. I even stammer at class presentations, the mere thought of people staring at me, judging every word I say has the power to chill me to the bone.
‘Are you happy?’ is such a difficult question to answer some days; I do have friends, I laugh at jokes, and I go out but I don’t feel fine. I don’t know what’s bothering me, and it isn’t my answer and not even a question.I don’t cry anymore like I used to before, rather I feel numb now. There are days when the world seems just fine like it’s safe to go out now, to enjoy the finer things in life until the brightest of things blur my vision, making me not only physically but mentally tired.
But I am fine, or that’s what people think, given the fact that I always have a smile plastered on my face. I am trying to stay alone, maybe that will make people stay, for I’m tired of everybody leaving. I am tired of myself, I am confused and I am used to it.
I wish I was normal like everyone else, that my anxiety wasn’t a hindrance to my college life. I hope the world doesn’t give up on me so soon; I swear I am trying to understand my mental state at the earliest. Believe me, I am not fine but I think I will be.
– Guest Article by Pragya