Long days and long nights

I am honestly really unprepared for my 4 consecutive papers next week and it worries me a lot. To top it off I haven’t been performing spectacularly in my time here. For the first time it’s not something I can brush off easily because I do have expectations to meet this time: it’s not just my unrealistic personal expectations as usual, but I have to justify why taxpayers are wasting their money on someone like me. And I actually have people to account to.

I repeatedly remind myself that hard work will eventually pay off like it did in Secondary 3 when I actually put my ass out to study properly, or when I literally mugged my head away in Year 6 to save my pathetic grades in Year 5. But then I remember that I did not work my hardest this time (started late/many unproductive days) and it honestly makes me very disappointed in myself knowing I can do much better than this. I leapt out of the Singapore education system to snap out of this endless paper chase but some things can never go. I refuse to resign to my fate of mediocrity — here’s a promise to myself to work much harder and smarter next year.

사진 2016. 5. 5. 오후 9.13 #3
Here’s me in the laundry room to prove that I am still alive. I had to upload this because it’s the only place I have been to the past 2 weeks other than my neighbouring Sainsbury for grocery shopping and exam venues… I used to comment how I was ‘living like a hermit’ during A Levels but I had no idea…. this life is the true hermit life. Without my phone at that.

Summer is approaching, the tree outside my window has been growing so much it’s blocking my view of the sunset now; Regents’ Park has really bloomed to its prime and it’s so colourful once again. Families stroll along the parks, the London Zoo crowds with little children, with the Open Air Theatre in Regents’ Park actually having people inside… I love the crowds. I love long days, even though some people mentioned that 9pm and 10pm sunsets will eventually annoy you. I still love them.

Which means that these 8 months have literally flew by. It scares me. It’s nearly the conclusion to my first year in university… what have I even accomplished?

Occasionally (like now) nostalgia hits me quite badly. Listening to some oldie that my Dad always played in his car nearly half a decade ago, and missing how fulfilling my life seemed at that point in time. I had the best experiences in CCA, best memories with my family (when my family just retired and we ate together every single weekend), and the most well-maintained friendships. And a pretty memorable relationship. Thinking back… I sadly have lost so many.

I always glamorise the past. I often omit how tough those days were, battling the cold and flu that never went away (such that I had to secretly head to the clinic to purchase the pills without my parents’ knowledge). Struggling with rather poor grades (didn’t even know how to log before a log test) because CCA commitments were taking up too much.

But if I were to choose again I’d still relive it all over again. My upper secondary school days seem so magical on hindsight. No matter how childish a mindset I held or no matter how bitchy or flirty I was or I don’t know how shitty my personality or attitude was. You don’t realise when you are too busy being happy. I felt alive. I felt like I was doing something with my life. I knew what I loved and enjoyed. I knew who mattered the most to me. I recall smiling to sleep on so many nights; it really saddens me to admit that I haven’t felt that way in a very long time.

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