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gmail is a tricksy thing

my gmail theme is cherry blossom and it makes me happy every time i look at it.

Warning: the following post is rather disjointed and not that easy of a read. I apologize.

Fact: I have multiple posts half-written, saved on my dashboard, that I haven't posted yet. One was last saved September 4, with the distinguishing sentences being: I'm not that familiar with two deaths and a coma all hitting me in the same ten-day period. and I feel guilty, but I've been so much more concerned about the coma than the deaths all along.

So in the same ten-day period, the mother of a friend died, my aunt died, and one of my best friends was in a car accident which resulted in her going into a three-week coma (she's out of it and recovering now, thank goodness). Such a lovely way to spend my last month at home, no? The wrap-up to one of the most emotionally traumatic summers of my life. My father and sister almost drowning, multiple people I know dying, the first anniversary of my grandfather's death, a friend going into a coma, leaving everything I know and going off to a college four hundred miles away from home?


The second post was last saved on September 20 (a few days after my arrival at Kalamazoo college!) and simply consists of "gmail is offering me a yard stick to the universe...and that seems to fit this week pretty much perfectly" and the beginnings of a recounting of the good, the bad, and the ugly in my life, which is something I do sometimes in blogs.


I haven't been able to finish either one, and that probably means I haven't (still) been able to sort out these things in my mind. I ended up visiting the friend three days in a row after she'd been transferred to the rehabilitation hospital down the street just before I left for college, but that wasn't sufficient to help me work through it. Over the past few months, I've been having moments where I freak out entirely about how well she'll be able to recover and whether it will be fully or whether she won't ever be the same. I've stayed in sometimes-contact with her mom and I'm visiting her over Thanksgiving and I'm terrified and I really don't want to write about it right now. I should. I still can't.

I've actually spent a lot of time over these past few months being angry at my friends back home. I've professed to my friends here that leaving them after this summer felt very unfinished and as if I don't want to spend any more time with them at all. Slowly, though, I've come to realize that this isn't true at all. I was ascribing to a group my feelings towards just a few: I still adore the majority of them. I don't blame them (anymore) for not being there for me through my trying summer -- for one, they had stuff of their own on their minds, and the Haylie-in-a-coma thing happened after they were all in college already. For another (and probably more importantly), I didn't share what I was going through with them.

Well. With all of them. I told my best friend, because I love him and I trust him and know that, even if he can't identify with everything, he can at least be sympathetic.

What this statement reflects on the rest of my friends isn't a very good thing. Did I not tell them because I didn't love them? Because I felt they couldn't be sympathetic? No, I didn't, even though what I said implies that those were part of my reasons. The trust thing, though... I feel as if the trust thing was important. For some reason, I convinced myself that I couldn't trust them much at all. I've been working through this, though, especially recently, and have distilled the problem to two separate people: one of whom I trusted completely and who completely broke that trust, and one of whom I adored and who (in my opinion) abused that adoration, also breaking my trust (a problem resulting from this: I am now unintentionally wary of anyone who reminds me of them at all). I likely ascribed my mistrustful feelings to the rest of them largely because, at the time, I wasn't telling them important things and somehow managed to skew that in my own perception to mean that I couldn't tell them the important things. I regret this.  

You know what really hurts? I'll call some of my friends from high school and they'll inevitably be all, "omg! Saskia! So great to hear from you! I miss you so much! I'm so glad you called!" and what gets me every time is that no matter how much they apparently miss me and how apparently joyful they are about hearing from me, they won't so much as pick up the phone or open an email and contact me. With just two exceptions, it's always me doing the initiating. Thanks for missing me enough to do something about it, guys. Phones work both ways. Emails aren't that difficult. IMing is pretty much the easiest thing in the world to do. I am often logged on. I see your screennames on my buddylist, also logged on. I send out 'hi's on a regular basis. At least some of you have good conversations with me, even if you don't initiate them. At least some of you initiate them.

Maybe this is a source of my retained anger towards my back-home friends. I spend four years of my life with them, trust them with so much, and then we grow apart almost immediately. I'm actually okay with this, most of the time. They have their lives; I have mine. I certainly don't contact them as much as I could (but at least I do contact them). I'm a busy person. But sometimes, there are moments when I ache to talk to someone who knows my backstory, who has been with me for years, who has some inkling about why I am the way I am instead of someone who has come in halfway through the story. I love the people I've met here, and we've shared the past ten weeks together in a very intimate and compassionate way (mostly). But ten weeks is not enough to know a person, not really, and it's when I miss the people I have an extended history with that I start thinking about my feelings about them and get simultaneously angry and sad again.

I just went through some of my old posts here and was reminded about how most of them are really great situationally, and that's how our friendship always has been: "I love you when I'm with you and you are often one of the greatest people I know when I'm with you, and when I'm not, it's not too much of a concern because I know that we'll have a great time again the next time we run into each other." I'm glad I remembered this. I needed to remember this. It's working wonders for my attitude for my friends-back-home as a whole.


Fact: my most recent twitter update (from 6:54 this morning) says "Dear subconscious, wtf is up with all these end of the world as i know it nightmares lately? Lava, crime, plague, REALLY?"

I've been having a lot of nightmares recently, three in the last week. Remember when I blogged about worrying about waking up at college and wanting nothing more than to see my family to be sure that they're safe?


They're anxiety dreams, mostly, about the end of the quarter and probably also about going home and finding things different. One about a week ago, where my grades were suddenly horrible and my parents kicked me out and decided to withdraw my funding (which in actuality would definitely never happen). Anxiety about finals. One where my parents decided my birthday was no longer important and went on a trip to Hawai'i instead of celebrating it. This one probably derives from the fact that I feel really guilty about missing my sister's sweet sixteen this year and probably also about being anxious about spending my first birthday away from most of my family (my sister is coming to visit though! :) :) :) ). The most recent one involved lava attacking a house up the street back home, rendering all the metal around superhot. This made it misshapen, so everything metal that we owned unusable. Also, it was radioactive lava? So we couldn't stay outside? And I left my phone in the truck before it became entirely unusable so I couldn't call anyone and let them know I was safe despite the calamity. And then after all of that a bunch of other disasters struck the area, like a plague and a sudden influx of crime and rice krispie treats filled with peas. My family was luckily safe, but I was terrified for the friends who lived in the house up the street (I was randomly talking to one of the kids online before the lava but that stopped after I headed home from K to be safe with my family). I got out of bed as soon as I woke up from this dream and wrote it down and at this point most of it makes no sense to me, but I wrote down the names of the people who figured prominently in that dream (Kelly, J, family, Heltzels, and Rachel who had the messed-up rice krispies) and I feel as if this is an accurate summation of my concerns about break. The last thing I wrote down on the paper is "world goes on but different." I'll be separated from the friends I made here (Kelly, Rachel -- and others, of course, but they didn't show up until my second dream of the night which was much happier and involved all of the friends I made here and lots of food and chocolate ice cream showers and strawberries and haunted houses and some of them having romantic feelings for the scary clowns). Another friend of mine who goes here (J) is graduating this year -- while she didn't actually appear in the dream, the person I really wanted to call about being safe was her and I felt very anxious throughout the rest of the dream about not being able to do so. My family and the family up the street are very obvious -- with the "world goes on but different" thing, I think I've summed up the largest of my anxieties in regards to going home.

I woke up concerned for their well-being. I'm really excited about being home for Thanksgiving especially now, because I can get the hugs I want on Wednesday instead of having to wait another week and a half!


Apart from these crazy dreams and my friends back home, I've adjusted really well to the college life. I love it here! Sometimes the food is actually decent, and there are a lot of good and relatively inexpensive restaurants within walking distance (also, yay, ordering in!). Classes are awesome and I'm finally managing to narrow down the things I want to do with my life -- currently, I'm planning on majoring in Human Development & Social Relations with a concentration in African studies, maybe taking some English and biology classes when I'm able. :D. The people here are amazing, it's super beautiful even when it's grey outside, and I keep having these swelling emotions of love for the place when I walk outside (even when I'm freezing cold and it's rainy and the leaves don't crunch when I walk on them. Actually, it's times like these that I look around and think, "God, I seriously love this place. It's so beautiful even when the weather sucks. It's such a great fit." I mean, okay, for example, the workload is pretty intense but sometimes I even love that ;).

I'm looking into an internship at the Student Conservation Association next year, because how seriously cool would that be? So cool, guys. So cool.

I have a new pair of kickass shoes (they were even on sale!), which pretty much adds the icing to the awesomecake that is the rest of my life right now :D.


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