Maybe I'm a little too obsessive.

I hate to be such a Debbie Downer, but...

I get scared sometimes.

When you're a little kid, you fear sleeping without a nightlight, or the monsters in the closet, or the boy with cooties who lives next door.

But then you grow up and you wish you still feared those things.

No, then you grow up and you start worrying about things like your future and your accomplishments and if anybody really cares what you do and if you'll ever amount to anything and if you'll ever achieve those goals that you set for yourself.

It's easy enough to tell yourself to just live day by day, to not worry about the future but just about the next class, the next test, the next semester.

But I get scared sometimes. Scared that thinking like that isn't going to work.

I have friends who know exactly what they want to do for the most part. Finish college, go to grad school, get x job and live in y city. And I know that I'm not the only person my age who has absolutely no idea what to do, who only planned as far as college. But it gets unnerving when I think about planning my schedule for next semester, when I don't know if I should plan towards the possibility of grad school, if I should be thinkin about specific jobs I might want, if I should be trying to accomplish goals before it's "too late" even though I don't know when "too late" is or what those goals might even be.

I get scared sometimes, because sometimes I feel that overwhelming sensation of having no idea who I am or who I'll be or who I'd like to be. Part of me thinks it's hilarious and silly that I worry about these things—I'm nineteen and I've got a whole life yet to live and what do I really know by now, anyway? But it's that push in this world to get success early on, to get a good job and earn good money and leave a good impression on the world and make something of yourself.

I feel like I've already missed out on so much already. I want to have traveled the world or something. I want to have gone on that Great American Road Trip. I want to have finished that first novel. I want to have done something really important. But I haven't done any of that, and the more I think about it, the more worthless I start to feel, and then I feel even more worthless for feeling worthless in the first place, and then it's just a dumb neverending cycle of worthlessness that doesn't even make sense because it's not like I've done nothing, it's not like I'm eighty years old and have wasted my whole life.

I get afraid that I'll fizzle out before I've even begun.

Traces of it seem to come up, like when I have good, strong starts in writing projects—hell, even whole drafts finished—and then it just... stops. I can't move on. I can't get past those walls of what happens next. And as much as I'd like to just keep writing and see what happens, I can't. Nothing comes out. Absolutely nothing.

I'm not going to lie: I have this overwhelming need for people to like me, to maybe even want to be my friend, to maybe even feel like I'm a really great person. But I don't usually feel like that really great person—after all, I'm just the girl who goes to class and then comes back to her room and sits around and doesn't do much besides go on the internet and read articles and browse facebook and twitter and attempt to write and eventually do homework. It gets too hard to drag myself away to go to that All Ways of Loving meeting or to practice my violin (even though I desperately need to).

And I guess it all boils back down to fearing that I'll never be good enough, I'll never finish what I start, I'll never achieve whatever it is I aim to achieve. I like to put up a strong attitude, like to say those confident words and tell people that I think I'm amazing. And I guess some or a lot of the time it's true. But deep down maybe it's not that I think I'm amazing. Maybe it's just that I want other people to think I'm amazing. Even though I may not be, even though I may not have done much to be considered amazing, I want so badly for people to see something wonderful in me.

Those goblins you once feared, the ones living under your bed or in that closet your parents never open—when you get older, you wish those goblins were still the scariest things in your life. The worst thing you can come to fear is your future, because those goblins can be killed. But you don't want to kill your future. You just want to know what to expect.
Published Feb 28 2009, 12:53 AM by amyh
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