Saturday, March 22, 2008

The Worst Time of the Year

I fucking hate my state! Today's was the first day of spring or whatnot, and guess what happens? It snows!! Not light fluffy snow, but like a couple inches of blizzard. It's still snowing right now . . . so it's been snowing for about 12 hours. This was all after it's been getting steadily warmer for the last week or so, then blizzard! Sigh. What a crappy state. It has one of the worst economies in the US, one of the highest unemployment rates, one of the fattest states, one with population decrease - I swear it's going to get annexed into Canada one day!

Anyway, if you can't guess by now, this is going to be another rant post. Which sucks, because I don't like to rant, but this is the only real medium for me to rant and just let it all out. So if you want to skip this one, I won't blame you. I don't seek pity words (as that makes things worse for me), or even really just "nice words," I just need to let it out and let it pass through me.

So it all started a few day ago. For the last 3-4 days (with the exception of last night) I've been having this horrible thought as I lay in bed right before I sleep. The thought is this, "I wonder what it's like to be dead?" Despite whatever you're thinking, this is not a suicidal thought as I have no intention nor desire to kill myself (never have, hopefully never will). It's just that I wonder - "worst case scenario" - what it's like to be dead: to not think, not breathe, not see, not smell, not touch, not taste . . . it's a horrible thought really. It makes my heart pump quickly and anxiously, and makes me overall really really uneasy.

So this morning, when I woke up (or was awoken by my roommate knocking on the door, because I "forgot" I had locked it), I laid in bed for 2 hours. I was hungry because I hadn't eaten since about 5:50pm the previous day, but I just couldn't get out of bed. When I finally got out of bed around 11am, I just got dressed, brushed my teeth, and went to research. The first thing I heard and saw when I exited my room was one of my roommates sitting on the couch watching anime. He's ALWAYS watching anime!! It's like he does nothing else!

So it took me almost 15 minutes to walk to my research lab, which is almost twice as long as it normally takes me. I was dragging myself along all day. Research was kind of rough because my negative controls turned out overwhelmingly positive, whereas my positive controls turned out overwhelming negative. This makes NO sense. As the grad student next to me says, "It's not research. It's re-search. Re search." And it so is.

After that, I went to meet with JW-M so he could help me with my med school interview next Friday. I got lunch (it's around 2:30pm now, finally eating) and met up with him. I told him about the horrible thoughts the nights before and about how I was still in a depressive mood from last night. Then I kind of broke down next to him, sitting in a public place (thankfully, there weren't many people around). I had felt like crying for almost a week not, but it also felt as if I forgot how to cry. And here I was, exerting as much control I possessed to control my breathing so people near us wouldn't realize the tears leaking out of my eyes. Good thing that all passed after about 5 minutes. I totally would've come out to him right there and then, except that it was a very public place and I don't feel comfortable having strangers hear our conversations.

But what exactly was I so distressed about? Simply that I do so much, put forth so much effort, try my hardest, and it appears to amount to nothing. In contrast, I know people whose grades are worse than mine, who don't try as hard, who are sometimes a waste of space, and these people get into grad school AND have choices as they got into more than one place. I never missed lecture without a really good excuse - the last time I missed lecture simply because I didn't want to go was for calculus 3 freshman year, and even that was because: we just had an exam, lecture was at 9am, and there was a sub. I try to get people motivated for my work, where I sort of tutor a group of students. I put countless hours into research, and in all these 3 years I still can't get this damn sub-cloning to work. I throw in all I've got into applying for med schools, and what do I have to show for it? On top of all this, my parents think I don't try my hardest despite whatever I tell them. They think I waste my time on the internet (not always untrue), play video games and watch TV all day (both of which are totally untrue).

Case 1: My roommate (won't identify him) is always late to his first class of the day, if he even shows up. I know his GPA is lower than mine. He sits there and watches anime all day and doesn't wash the dishes as much as he used to; as a consequence, our sink is overflowing with dishes as I refuse to do them (though I might just give in soon). In fact, he really just sits there all day watching anime with the TV on, even though he doesn't really watch TV. And he complains how he doesn't have time to do his work and readings.

Case 2: My friend (won't identify her) doesn't go to many of her classes. I think she's barely pulling off a 3.00 GPA, although her major is rather difficult so I don't completely begrudge her. But she also has all sorts of health problems - if only she took better care of herself! She's my stand partner in Pops Orchestra, but she's been absent for about 5 rehearsals (just under half the total number of rehearsals we've had so far). She's on the board, and if it were anyone else, she would've been kicked out. I've resorted to learning her part and playing it at the same time as mine (not always possible on the cello, but whatever). Oh yeah, she's gotten into several grad schools and is in the process of visiting them to choose which one she ultimately wants to go to.

These people - whose GPA are far less than mine, who've done so little extracurricular or activities that help people, who're more often than not lazy or incapacitated - are in grad school AND have choices. I haven't even gotten in anywhere! Med school or public health grad school. I don't have choices, I can't choose, and yet I've done so much. Did I do something wrong?

I'm the kind of person who's really hardworking, and I don't mind that people around me slack off a bit. But after a while, it grates on me. I believe that people get what they deserve, except I rarely get what I deserve. Why does it feel like I have to work so much harder to get what I want?

So with that thought in mind, I kind of broke down next to JW-M. I thought to myself, "Why do I even bother? I work so damn hard and have nothing to show for it! Nothing, absolutely nothing. I should just give up and become a professional bum. It's not worth it anymore, and I don't care." Except the problem is that I DO care. I work hard because I'm like that.

I really must thank JW-M for putting up with this. I must also applaud him for not trying to comfort me and rather just waiting for the worst to pass before doing anything. If he tried to comfort me while I was breaking down, I may have ended up sobbing. I cry maybe once a year. This would be it for this year. And I so badly wanted to just blurt out to him and come out, and I don't know if that was part of my problems or if that would've made me feel better, but it might've provided some temporary relief.

Later this evening I almost felt like breaking down again. But I contained that episode. I never did get a clear chance to come out to JW-M. Perhaps when we go to the gym tomorrow, right before he leaves for home for Easter. Anyway, I've written enough. Hopefully, things only look up from here.


B said...

We got snow here within the last week too. Ugh.

Mike said...

Dare I tell you it was 92 in So Cal yesterday?

All I can say about the whole schoolwork/activities thing is take pride in all that you do. Think of yourself as a better person for doing everything, going to class.

Aek said...

Haha, 92 is like the other extreme, a bit too hot.

Sometimes I feel pride is one of those things I don't have, or try to have as little of. Oh well.