I’m thinking about writing this addressed to my followers ( now that I have them), rather than ambiguously and confusing speaking into the void. This is actually my second time writing Camblog 9. I wrote the first about a week ago, published it then put it back into my drafts. I don’t fully know why I took it down. I think it just didn’t feel very genuine as I was trying to be positive when I really felt very negative about myself.
This term has been really challenging for me. I’ve been feeling very claustrophobic. The work is relentless, family stuff, maintaining communications with friends, and *constantly* fight the self-doubt gremlin in my head. All of this has resulted in me feeling very overwhelmed. At college I had a better sense of balance and control over my life- a big thing being how free I was to leave college and go outside for walks/runs/to sit by the river. Clearly, there are benefits that accompany working from home, spending time with your family, the comfort of your own bed, mums delicious rotis. However, I think the reason it is been so difficult for me to adapt is that I can’t turn my brain off about thinking about home stuff and work stuff very easily. On top of this, my social media dependence was really grating on me. It got to the point where I felt like I was daydreaming through my days, so I’ve been taking deactivation breaks which I find very grounding. Just as I was waiting for my computer to load up ( bless it takes a long time because of all the work I use it for), I realised how much having the option of scrolling pulls us away from small day to day experiences, like birds flying circles above the garden.
Every moment is so precious. Sitting with family after dinner, hugging my mum before starting a zoom class, my dad asking if I’ve been on my run and telling me his pace for the day. There will be a time in my life that I will wish I could go back to the time I am in now. It sounds a little strange, but in these situations the I feel deep gratitude but also a scary sense of impending melancholy. I’m trying to appreciate moments at face value a little more, not get wrought up in thoughts of loss: breathe the fragrance of the current moment without pre-empting the after-taste.
I have a lot of thoughts on my longer runs. A few days back I was thinking about my approach to running. I am very slow and only run when and as far as I feel comfortable pushed, after which I walk the rest of the way. What is key for me is a sense of consistency- at least I go out twice a week no matter how long or far. I’ve traced a lot of my issues this term to feelings of inadequacy in all facets of my life: academic and personal. It is really flawed to think the way I do, and I’ve been consciously attempting to work on this of late. However, on this particular run, I was really reminded of the importance of consistency. As long as I take care of my body and soul, and keep carving my way through life, that is all I can ask for. Perfection is not something I wish to attain- it comes at the expense of meaningful relationships and experiences. Rather I must continue to nurture a sense of gratitude to ground me, and spirituality to carry me forward.
We have exams coming up in the coming weeks, and as usual, my existential thoughts kick in: why am I doing what I am doing? Because simply, it is the best course of action at this point in time that I can take. My university course isn’t my life ( an effect probably made more pronounced by this only term) though it forms a large facet of it, and that I’m on a much bigger journey. I get very overwhelmed by this whole medical career pathway concept- it often comes across as a lifetime dedication that requires a sense of certainty and self-sacrifice. However, I must always remind myself that my life is what I make of it, and I can take decisions that will form my own path. I find it very saddening to think that linear career projections are so valued in our society- going through the motions to get to consultancy is well looked upon by the public. It removes the magic of life, because what are we but products of mistakes, unforeseen turns and most importantly affection.
On this note I’ll sign off.