I thought I knew people. I thought I was the great scholar of homo sapiens. I’m a huge fool. I’m a big, big fool. I don’t know people. I don’t know anything. This is what I’ve come to realize. This is the knowledge I have, nothing else. I don’t even know myself. I surprise myself every day. Wasn’t it the other day that I was wishing for my sister’s presence to watch my new favorite show Jane the Virgin with? My sister who is the sibling I’m least close to.
One thing that hasn’t changed though is my love for bread. Before I had friends—or rather, the courage to turn acquaintances into friends—I went whole weekends without leaving my dorm. I survived on bread and fountain water. Bread with Nutella, bread with jam, and a bottle of what I have come to realize is unclean water.
Without my knowing I have turned myself into an enigma in this school. One Saturday I was bored and cut my yarn twists. I had shoulder-length hair on Valentine’s Day. The non-black students were whispering. “Your hair,” a male friend said in surprise, eyes wide like he’d seen a ghost. I am a ghost in this school. I feel incredibly slippery, neither in nor out. Everyone else has sure footing but me. Somehow, I missed out on the “how to win friends and influence people” lecture during orientation. I was probably too busy crying my eyes out at how much I miss my family. Or rather, how much I miss my old routine (because if I really missed my family I wouldn’t ignore their calls).
Out with the old, in with the new.
I suffered an existential crisis one weekend. I know how to cry very well and I performed my duties as such. I was in a terrible place, unable to identify this horrible feeling. Thank God and millennials for Google; a couple of searches brought me to those two words: existential crisis. Google said things like, “you feel life is pointless,” and “this only occurs to geniuses.” Some part of me was pleased at the genius thing. This is probably what Van Gogh aspired to when he cut off his ear. Maybe I should cut off my hand. I’ll never have written anything but the possibility of my potential and genius would be there.
I’m jealous of all my favorite writers. I want to be happy that there are so many women writing great things but it honestly just makes me feel like crap. I turn everything into a competition when it comes to women. I want to be the most desired, the most talented, the funniest—I think I want to be Eve, the first woman.
Things that make me depressed: cold and cloudy days, the lighting in my room, bad selfies, loneliness, failing a class, when that friend that is sort of annoying stops trying to hang out, spending $200 in less than a week, all this responsibility.
I begged to be a college student and now that I’m it, you can take it away.
I didn’t beg to be alive but you know what, take that too.
Let me clarify, I don’t want to die. Not now. I strongly, and arrogantly, believe I’m going to be great and I’ll be terribly sad if I die before then. I also can’t quit college cause I’m already dedicated to finishing it, graduating an honors student. I want to be good at college. I want to be good at life.
Hole has a song called “Doll Parts” which has one the best lines ever written: “I want to be the girl with the most cake.” The “cake” referred to is not literal, and is not a good thing. I always saw the narrator (Courtney Love, I guess) as a sort of tragic heroine for choosing to carry the load thrust on her with the best sort of attitude. I come from a long line of these sort of women, these sacrificing women, these compromising women, these long-suffering women. My mother, my sister, my aunts. Me? I don’t know yet. I suppose I will become a tragic heroine of some sort, wrought with wounds and scars. Having survived, well, I hope to eat the cake.