I'm at one of those points where you're actually looking at yourself for once instead of just carrying on as per normal. Every time for at least the last seven years and to some extent as long as I've been alive, I never like what I see when I have these times. I suppose that nobody does, not really, because there's always going to be something that you regret, but I can only speak for myself.
Last year was hard for me because of my rooming situation, so I used that as an excuse for essentially doing nothing all year. And I told myself that the real test of whether I could handle college would be this year, a year where everything was set up in the way easiest for me. Because surely, without the roommate issues to deal with, I would succeed.
And now first semester is over and when I think everything over I see that I didn't actually meet any of my goals, academic or personal. That's not exactly a surprise.
The thing I've (pathetically enough, I'll admit) only just realized is that it was all my own fault. And it always has been.
I have always spent an amazing amount of time pining over the fact that my actual life has never lived up to my expectations, but it seems like I never bother to examine why that is, or else I blame it on some huge, all-powerful force of apathy that suppresses me. --Well, in all fairness, there may be something to be said for that. There's a history of mental illness on every side of my family, as far as I know; in that sense I wasn't dealt a good hand in the first place.
--But someone with such high expectations as I have ought to also be someone who believes herself capable of making use of a stacked deck; otherwise it doesn't make much sense to begin with, does it?
In short, I ought to be looking; I ought to be figuring out why I invariably fall short. In my heart of hearts, I'm a fatalist. I have never actually believed that anything I do or fail to do will be a determining factor to the final outcome; there doesn't seem to be a real connection between cause and effect, despite what I have been told. And I guess that would be fine if I were happy with that. I gather that many people are comforted to live in a world where Fate guides everything. (But now I see that I am not one of those people, that I only use this as a sort of self-fulfilling prophecy. So I should not live in a world like that.)
I think that in a way, I would not be pleased with myself even if I had gone and gotten straight A's as I had wanted. For the most part at least, I liked the classes I had this last semester a lot. Learning about the structure of language especially fascinated me, and I'm looking forward to next semester's Linguistics class so much.
Yet despite supposedly "having a passion" (whatever that means; when it comes right down to it there's nothing I truly enjoy anymore) for these subjects, I don't think I ever considered knowledge in them to be something of value, something worth having. A's would not have made me happy with myself because they would have been A's in useless subjects. If I graduate with a degree, as I am (well, was, anyway) planning, in English and History, I won't be pleased with myself. I won't feel like I've accomplished something. It's unfair, especially since they are the subjects I actually like, but I can't help but think that the liberal arts are for sissies. By studying, even succeeding in them, I'll still only be confirming all of my worst thoughts about myself.
By the time I was eight I knew I wanted to be a physicist. But I never actually considered going down that road; also by the time I was eight I was wallowing in self-pity and the knowledge that I did not have the requisite math ability. And yet this was when I was at an age where I could easily have changed that fact! Had I ever decided to actually put some work into it, I would never have gotten so far behind.
As it is, I honestly have no idea how I ever made it through high school math, since I never had a clue what was going on. I really did stop paying attention in grade school, meaning that I'm seriously just now learning how to use a fraction, etc.
That doesn't matter. I'm done. If I don't know it, I'll learn it; if I can't learn it, I should never have dreamed of going into a hard science in the first place. If I never did intend to learn the math, then I should have spent that time working on my writing; I would be a much better writer now if I had. No, I'll learn it, because for the first time I know that it is my responsibility to do so.
If I'm behind, then I will catch up. I've done that before. But what I won't do this time is make excuses. If I'm depressed? If I have problems with my roommate for next semester? If I have trouble managing my time? It's up to me to reach out for help. I always assume that things will simply happen or not according to their own wills, but look at where that's gotten me.
Therefore. Here are the things I absolutely will do next semester (and here over j-term too, of course):
1. I will go to every class, even if I would rather sleep in.
2. I will, on a related note, keep a reasonable sleep schedule.
3. I will do all homework, even when I would rather not because I don't think the finished product will be as good as I wish it were.
4. I will write consistently. Ie, regardless of whether it's good enough to ever see the light of day, I will write one fic per week.
5. I will actually, you know, read things instead of only pretending to read it. If I don't want to read it in the first place, I will not check out the book/friend the comm/join the fandom.
6. I will keep my room clean. That means no more stacking panini takeout containers one on top of another on my desk for a week.
7. I will catch up on the math I missed in school.
8. I will not waste hours on end doing dumbfuck things like looking at random youtube videos/ED articles/4chan when I could be using that time for something that could actually be of use.
9. I will also not spend HUEG amounts of time making lists of completely pointless things. Oh, this list isn't pointless. But the ones of the possible irl hair colors manga characters would have if they were real people? Even I think those are stupid and I'm the one who wastes her time making them! No more!
Determined post is determined! &c!