The anxiety that creeps in

Dear Helsinki,

It has been a long time since I have written to you and I wish I could tell you nothing has happened, but in fact a lot of events have taken place since I penned you a letter and now I am wondering from where I should start. In fact I have tried to scribble you something and every single time I say the same thing and then I give up, because there is so much to tell and I have absolutely no idea where to begin so I concede and do nothing. But if I continue like this, we will never be what we used to be so please forgive me if I sound rude and just tell you everything in the most rudimental manner possible.

My university studies are not going as they were supposed to advance — I just dropped out of from one of my compulsory courses, because I never attended the lectures. I also did not start my graduate seminar, because I was not bothered to sit down and decide what the topic of my thesis topic should be so rather than attempting to pick a topic that interests me enough, I decided there is no point. The same thing happened with one of my compulsory course. I have absolutely no idea what it entails and I heard from many of my friends it is an easy course to pass if you are willing to go through the boring lectures, but I could not bring myself to wake up every Tuesday and Thursday morning at 7.30am to attend a series of lectures that had no bearing for my future, well besides the fact that I had to attend the class to get my degree.

A month ago I got a call from the parliament. They wished to interview me for a job that I had applied to and although I had given up on the hope of ever getting it, I got enormously excited about it. The interview was a failure and a few weeks later I found out I did not get it, because supposedly they picked a person whose life situation matched better with the demands of the job. I had absolutely no idea what it meant, but it was the first rejection I had received since applying to high schools and I wish it had not brought back all the miserable memories from the period, but it did. Everyone had told me I would be accepted to my first choice, but ultimately I failed to gain an admission. I do not think I ever recovered from it and it still bothers me.

You may ask what does it matter if one says no and you are right, it should not. After the rejection in my middle school I did succeed and got a scholarship to study at one of the most prestigious high schools in the world, but the thing is that I never stopped competing against myself. In the final year of high school I had to apply to colleges and even with poor SAT-scores I managed to secure a spot at one of the most credited liberal arts colleges in the United States with a full scholarship, but guess what, I did not get into one college that was nowhere near the top rankings and I could not help thinking what is wrong with me. I accepted the spot at the college, but as you know, I dropped out quite soon to pursue my love and I thought that at this point I have lost all my credibility and there was no one that would offer me what my college had given me, but six months later I was accepted to a Dutch college, once again with a full scholarship that covered even my rent, and all that was in my mind how bad were the other people if they were able to offer me the scholarship. Afterwards I got an internship opportunity at an embassy, government think-tank and Amnesty International and none of the achievements made me feel good — and then I got the rejection from the parliament and I crashed.

I have never been quite happy with myself. I have always required external validation, but nothing is sufficient. Probably had I gotten a yes from the parliament I would had thought how bad were the other applicants if I was able to get the position, that very same lurking thought that visits me every single time when receive external validation. I never think that I was in fact the best of everyone; I just give the credit to the fact that I was the least worst of all the possible options.

The rejection I got from the parliament was one of the firsts in a really long time and it has affected me much more than I had ever imagined. Since that I have put my life on hold and not progressed with anything in my life. And I know it should be all right to take a pause, but everything else around me keeps going on at an insane pace and I cannot help but feel that I am lagging behind when what I need the most is just to sit down and think of nothing. But it is not just possible. Not the way I would need a break.

I wish I could tell you not to worry about me, that I would pick up the pieces and everything will be fine. I probably will, this is not the first time I have been disappointed at my self but what about others who just cannot find the strength in themselves to find the courage and fight against the norms that the society places upon us?

And what about me, my Helsinki?
What happens when I get too tired?