Four Month Journal: Frenzied finals

I fear that if I don’t sit down with my thoughts at this very moment, I never will.

These last four months were me frantically––yes, frantically––establishing myself as a committed, dedicated journalist at the E.W. Scripps School of Journalism at Ohio University.

But with all of this responsibility, mentorship, and career-defining experience, I’ve ignored the one person who means the difference between a decent life and a fulfilling life––me.

You see, college living has prohibited me from obtaining absolute silence and stillness at any given opportunity, and that’s been somewhat of a jarring shift in lifestyle for one of the most introverted introverts on the planet.

I like my quiet space. I crave my moments of aloneness. I don’t like constant motion––I need an hour or two, here and there, in order to keep going.

Deprived of this soul-reviving privilege, these last two weeks of college have been absolute hell.

Without time to slow down, my sanity begins to shutdown. When I get stressed, I panic. And when I’m living in a constant state of palm-sweating agitation, I misplace almost everything I touch.

Over the past four months, I’ve lost one leather glove, the key to kitchen access, my own room key, a red USB, a DVD drive cord, and––as of two days ago––my driver’s license.

All things that can be replaced, but not ideally items to replaced at all.

I’m Bethany Bella: the Overachiever, Coveted Organizer, Famously Responsible. In short, I don’t lose things.

Practically living as a nomad has stretched my ability to keep track of everything I ought to have with me at all times––to this hour, I still don’t know how my driver’s license could have escaped my attention for more than 5 days.

Each of these missing items has resulted in my utter frustration, anger, and bloody hatred for all the bad karma in the world that’s suddenly decided to suffocate my life.

But it’s never as bad as it may seem.

I have to remind myself that I’m not a war-torn refugee, like the thousands of Syrian children without a home, some without families.

I have to remind myself that I’m not crippled, blind, or even yet, dying in a hospital after being the victim of a multi-car crash.

I have to remind myself that I’m still breathing, that I’m still standing, and that I’m healthier than I’ve been in 6 years.

Sulking and pouting about my misfortunes won’t do me any good––I learned that the hard way the morning I lost my license. Carrying over grudges from the day before, I decided I deserved a day of selfish contempt. Apparently, my misplaced ID felt a little differently about my righteous attitude.

Various triumphs in college have also discouraged me from furthering my childhood religion. With countries warring over religious labels, affiliations, and whose-God-is-my-God, I decided a while ago I wanted to follow my own path of spiritual growth––without conforming to an all-purpose doctrine.

These months of incredible opportunity once left me convinced I didn’t need anybody else but myself to earn a profitable career. In light of recent events, I’m not so sure I can count on this apparent inept ability of mine to function in a completely self-reliant life.

Today, I woke up bedraggled from yesterday’s insomnia but renewed with a sense of seemingly-dumb optimism.

It is a new day, I told myself. No redemption can save what was lost in the past.

It was freeing to realize I physically could do nothing to change what was already done, what was already lost, the words I had already screamed in my head.

With a fresh set of hours spun on the clock, and a lifted heart of humble awareness, I can begin again.

Thanks for still believing in me,

BNB, xo

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