learning

2013, A Summary: Quotes of note.

Every now and again someone says something or I read something and it really resonates. It doesn’t happen often, not truly, but when it does it sticks in my head and I remember it. So here are some of the quotes from this year that have meant a lot:

Gatsby? What Gatsby?

I think I can speak on behalf of myself and a few of my friends when I say this was our mostly highly anticipated film of 2013. After studying the novel for a year as the first half of my A-Levels I felt a connection to the wonderful world of words married together by F. Scott Fitzgerald. It was a definite must watch and when I did, it exceeded all expectations.

I cried most of the way through it, either that or I was verging on tears. It was beautiful, not only were there a fantastic range of actors and actresses but the visuals were stunning. The story itself wraps around my heart strings and tugs for the full two hours and twenty minutes.

I could have very easily quoted the entire film because there are so many poignant lines, most of them spoken by Daisy, that really struck me. This one though umbrellas all of them. The thought of someone from your past suddenly falling back into place and being flung back to a time where you were truly happy, highlighting just how unhappy you are presently. The thought is heartbreaking, as is the entire film. But this idea sticks for me. Incredible.

Yes, you have a place.

This quote is an email from the admissions office in Glasgow University. Note the lack of social etiquette or any kind of professional trimmings you’d expect from a University representative. Results day had obviously taken it’s toll on all of us because the email in it’s entirety was simply the above quote.

This is because, in context, I’d been hounding the admissions office for hours on end. This was in the heat of results day, I’d been rejected definitively and rather harshly from Lancaster and within the space of a few hours my future hung in the balance. Everything depended on a yes from Glasgow. Evidently I got it, but for several hours I was sick with the thought of going nowhere.

I’d called them thousands of times, and that’s no exaggeration. I was sitting in the school library with a desk phone in one hand and my iPhone in the other and I was just constantly pressing redial every time it failed to connect. I couldn’t have expected anything more, everyone who’d failed to get into their firm choice was doing the exact same. Eventually I sent them an email in desperation, they replied with something semi-positive but vague like “you’ll hear officially from UCAS tonight” which wasn’t enough. I needed solid confirmation. So I asked for it to be spelt out and voila, that short, rather abrupt email hitched my wagon to a place in Glasgow University.

So the above quote encapsulates the ultimate feeling of relief and panic suddenly leaving my body all in one swift sentence.

You chose your heart over your head, and your head triumphed!

Of course I have to include a line from one of the most quotable figures in my secondary school. A past English teacher of mine, suddenly turned prophetic in a moment of absolute clarity in regards to my future education.

I’m not saying choosing Lancaster University as my firm choice was a wrong decision, but it was right that I ended up at Glasgow.

I’d fallen in love with the idea of Lancaster and what it could’ve held in store. It was remote and it was safe, security was definitely to be found in Lancaster, which is what I felt I needed at the time when I had to make the decision. Was it the right place for me then? I guess I’ll never know, which is for the best.

It’s evident to me now that Glasgow University was the best thing that could’ve happened to me. I needed out, I needed escape, independence and Glasgow was my clean slate with no dirty laundry or skeletons in the closet waiting for me.

This quote taught me that I know what I want, but what’s important is what I need. I think this is a battle a lot of is face at times, when what we want is right in front of us but to grow we need to turn to the thing that’s farther away and go for that which we need.

I made it.

These were the first words uttered in my new room, my new life, in Glasgow. I’d spent all day travelling and I was knackered. Most people who know me will know I’m not one for crying in front of others. I like to stay strong in the moment and deal with the emotions later, privately. So when I said goodbye to my mum and my sister I kept it together and held it in. After a stressful couple of hours on the road, however I was ready to break. And so when I burst into my new home, I dumped my bags, called my mum and I burst into tears.

I couldn’t even say it at first, but she knew what I wanted to say: I made it.

Not taking shit from anyone, not depending on people, this year is my year. Bring it on.

These were the closing words in my very first diary entry on the 31st December 2012. I’d decided the year just gone was a complete and utter write-off and that 2013 was going to be better. I think I can safely say without a doubt that it was. It took a while to turn it around but it blossomed into an amazing few months from the beginning of summer onwards.

I felt it was poetic to end this post with the quote that began it all in 2013. It was a year of self-discovery, a year of independence, and most importantly it was my year.

2013, A Summary: The beginning of the end.

This year I set myself the challenge of keeping a diary, the Bridget Jones type. I wanted to document most of what happens in my life over 2013, warts and all, read it back and laugh in hindsight.

Oh, how naïve I was.

It turned into quite the commentary, and now it’s one of the most precious things I own. It’s all there, the smiles, tears, laughter, pain, all of it. Frankly I was scared to read it.

It’s strange to think that I’d be scared to read it; I wrote it, I lived it but when I sit down and pick a month to re-read I find myself cheering on the person behind the story. It’s like when you read a series of books you get attached to the character, you want them to succeed. This is the kind of detachment I feel when reading it, I feel like it isn’t real. It was shocking to realise how much we forget, whole weeks and months of events completely slipped my mind.

It’s hard because while there are points of triumph that make me want to punch the air in a smug sense of victory, there are other moments that remind me of how vulnerable I can be. There has to be a balance, do I read it for the good times? Or do I avoid it for the bad?

I was able to sit down and read it the whole way through. Each day has it’s own page but usually whenever something big happens I need to squeeze in some extra paper to take note of the details. It’s daunting because I’ll know something momentous is coming up because four pages will flutter out of a certain pivotal date and I’ll think:

Here we go again…

Anyway, onto this series of blog posts. The reason I’m writing these is to put the pieces together. I feel like living out the book I’ve filled was an adventure in itself. I went out and found all the puzzle pieces that were my experiences and now I feel like I need to knit them into something that makes sense so I can grow from it.

So if you’ve read this far I just want to say thanks for being interested. I don’t usually write so personally and this is the first time I’ll have thought of this year as a whole rather than day by day. These posts are not a tell-all. I don’t dish the dirt on anyone that’s been less than kind, I reflect on what that’s taught me. Sorry to disappoint if that’s what you were looking for.

So get ready for all the laughs, all the lows, some amazing people and a few quotes along the way. I’ll put all of the links below so you can easily go between all of the posts you haven’t read. Enjoy! And if you want to you can let me know what you think.

Quotes of note: http://wp.me/p3VoF3-2e

2013, A Summary: Expecting too much from friends, making an effort and a bad date.

I feel like I’ve learnt not to expect things from people that really can’t be bothered. I think at this point in my life I don’t have the time to be messing around with those that don’t want to be around. If someone wants to see me or be a part of my life then they’ll let me know. If not, then that’s fine, people go on the back burner for a while. Sometimes friendships fizzle out and light up again with time, it happens.

*mini rant*

In saying that though, it’s become apparent that some people look at you for what you’re worth to them. And I’m sick of that, I shouldn’t valued by what I can do for someone else, I should be valued because I’m a good friend. Anyone who expects to phase me out when I’ve grown boring can go do one.

*mini rant over*

I had such a bad time with people leaving, 2012 was worse, people would just leave without a second’s notice. I didn’t understand and I wallowed in it for months, more than I care to admit (even to myself). Eventually I had to open the curtains, take in the world outside and move on. It’s meant that if anything comes to the end of the line with someone it can just happen naturally. It doesn’t have to be a major dramatic event. People leave, but sometimes they come back.

This has led me to really appreciate people when they do make an effort. The most basic example of this is just sending a text. As the year has gone on I’ve sent less texts just to see who actually dishes them out. Surprise surprise, I was waiting a while but eventually someone takes the time to say hello and usually they’ll have something worthwhile in mind. Thank you to those people who have made this year worthwhile, chances are you’ll know who you are.

People have genuinely surprised me this year, I look back in my diary and one day I’ll be going about my daily business and the next I’ll have written pages about someone who’s just exploded back onto my radar out of nowhere. It’s been a great year for that, I’ve loved those moments, they were fantastic.

As for the relationship front I’ve tried to make a point of not writing about it on WordPress at all because it’s just redundant. It has been prevalent this year, so I’ll mention it in jest:

Still no developments. Cue the audience of “awwh”s.

I have tried! I went on dates, as date-like as they could be, anyway. I went on one just after I moved to Glasgow and it was awful. The guy didn’t even make eye contact, just stared into his drink and didn’t make any kind of attempt at conversation. Not being one to give in to awkwardness I tried to ask him things to try and get him to open up. Nope, nothing. He wasn’t budging. After about ten minutes of this I gave up and I’m not one to just turn around and be nasty to someone so I sent out an SOS:

Call me in about a minute, DEMAND I come help you with something, doesn’t matter what. JUST GET ME OUT OF THIS.

90 seconds later I was well on my way home to bed, to Bridget Jones and copious amounts of whatever cured a serious case of cringe (probably chocolate or something at that time).

That encounter pretty much sums up my dating life up to the present day. Awkward with no eye contact and a deep sense of a need to escape. Great.