Monday, 23 November 2015

Parallel Universes

I've spent a large part of the weekend living in my head and thinking of a parallel universe. It's a dangerous habit of mine, where I think "if this hadn't happened, I'd be doing this or that". It's a game which can sometimes be fun- "oh god, thank GOODNESS I'm not doing that!"-  but for the most part leaves me feeling lost and a little confused as to how I ended up doing what I'm doing, and feeling how I'm feeling.

This time, I thought of the people to whom I've had to explain what a "tor" is. I was so caught in my head, I took a snap, before I realised that everyone who cares about me now knows what one is. I pictured myself wandering hand in hand with another person, or giggling down the phone late at night.

I don't recognise this girl. The Alice I know is independent, self sufficient, strong. The Alice I am at the moment is tearful, contemplative, quiet. She leaves the room when certain conversations begin; looks at her loved ones jealously, begrudging their happiness. She forgets to eat breakfast, and spends days at work with her headphones in, head down, quietly trying to make it through the eight or nine hours she spends at her desk. She doesn't bake any more.

I feel like this year, I've lost who I am. I've spent so much of this year being something else to someone else (multiple someone elses, in fact) that it has stopped me from thinking about the things that I am, that I want, that I need. I've spent days, weeks, months feeling guilty about asking for the things I need. Hiding what I feel to allow others to feel what they feel. Diminishing myself so as not to make others feel small. Hiding my feelings, hiding relationships, hiding in offices and stairwells and bedrooms and on trains.

I'm ending 2015 as a person I don't really recognise when I look in the mirror. The dark circles under my eyes, the sadness in my face, the set of my jaw that makes it look like I'm steeling myself against another blow.

I don't know who I am any more. I don't know how to get back to myself, either.

And that scares me. I don't want to be this person. I don't want to be sad, I don't want to be lonely, I don't want to pull myself away from the people who do care about me. But it's what I'm finding myself doing.

And I have no idea why.


  1. I am so sorry you find yourself in this position. It is horrible and I truly understand and sympathise. I have felt all of the things you are currently feeling: sad, lonely, confused - for the last three years. I tried in vain to get back to who I was before, but I am so far gone from that girl that I can't even remember what she is like. But I have recently realised that this is a good thing. Going back is not the answer. The old me would have struggled with a lot of what I have done over these three years.

    It has taken me three years, many tear-stained sleepless nights and three very lonely birthdays to realise that where I am right now is probably good, and everything I have been through has happened for a reason. I'm not saying I suddenly have all the answers: I may know that going back is wrong but I have no idea how to move forward. I am still very lost and confused - but for the first time in a long time I'm not as sad.

    With all the horrific events that have been occurring around the world over the last few weeks (actually the few years if we're being honest) I had a long overdue epiphany: life is too short to be miserable.
    I handed in my notice at a Christmas temp job I really did not like (the stress was not worth it) and although that perhaps leaves me even more lost I feel as if a weight has been lifted off my shoulders; that for the first time in a long time I am actually moving in the right direction.

    I hope things get better for you soon and that you find a balance again.
    This is only a short chapter, thrown in to stir the plot up a bit - you've still got the rest of the novel ahead of you: what happens is entirely up to you.

    "I've learned a lot this year. I've learned I can deal with a huge amount more than I ever thought I could. I've learned that I am strong, that I love quickly and deeply and strongly. I've learned that I am able to put myself first on occasion, and that normally, that isn't a bad thing." Alice

    I will finish my ramble by saying I really love you're blog -
    I hope you feel better soon x

  2. Oh boy can I relate.

    I too am feeling lost, and not myself. I completely understand where you're coming from, especially wondering where the independent, joyful person you once were has gone. Not that she's gone forever, I mean, I'm really hoping she's gone into hibernation while I work through what is going on in my head.

    Your last three paragraphs really strike me because it is like I've written them myself. You just have to remember that this too shall pass. This isn't forever Alice, it's just a chapter in your story. A chapter you will come out of and close feeling stronger for the better.

    I've had a rough couple of weeks, and was signed off work during which I realised that in order to truly begin healing I had to break. And break I did. It was horrendous, and I felt so unstable and although I wouldn't say I can honestly see the light at the end of the tunnel, I know it's there. And you'll get there eventually Alice. In your own time, when it is the right time for you.

    Just know that you're not alone x


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