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Shells and Identity

August 10, 2009

A person is a shell, the inner lining of a shell. There’s both an inside and an outside, one can be seen more easily than the other. When it rains, it looks duller; when it’s sunny it’s brighter- same with people. Bad moods are like rain; good like sunshine. Depression has the same effect as a paint stripper would have on well, paint. Depression strips out the inside, and sometimes the outside, too, and leaves a nasty mess on the carpet. I can’t help but feel that this has happened to me.

Who I was, who I am, who I could have been and want to be. Who I was and who I am are completely different; carefree, worryless, hardworking, curious… to one who tends to worry, can’t concentrate or work properly, and one who is scared about travelling on her own. I’ve been away alone for the past couple of years, and it’s never really been much of a problem: I pack my bags, go to the airport and I’m gone; when I get to the other end the person I’m seeing is waiting for me… but now I’m worried. Worried that I’m burdening them, worried that I won’t fit in, worried that my dream trip to Budapest will turn into a horrendous waste of money to the tune of £500. Some of my favourite bands are playing, I get some time out with my best friend, what could go wrong? Everything it seems, courtesy of negative thinking. See, if anything does go wrong I know what I’ll do: catch a train to the city centre and do whatever the hell I want. Dangerous? Probably, but who cares. My brain is catastrophising: camping next to the Danube is too tempting, tempting for you know what? This isn’t logical, this isn’t what I want. I want some peace, quiet, good music and fun times; that I’m hoping for and to be ‘normal’, as normal as the last time I went to Budapest. Just me and my friend and fun explorations… but now there’s her boyfriend thrown into the equation. I get on with him, he’s a decent guy, but I can’t be ‘me’. I’m taking books for lulls and sleepeaze for difficult times.

I’m different to how I used to be. I didn’t want to be different, I didn’t want to change. I want to own lots of travel books for a reason: because I’m going to travel… but instead they’re left on the booksellers shelf whilst I reprimand myself for being so silly; how could I even contemplate that? I want to travel, somewhere within me. Australia, USA, Japan; they all interest me. Be free, free like a bird.

There’s too much water under the bridge, that I know for sure. If I recover, will I regain my old self, or will I be forever different? I’m not expecting to get other things back, things I may have lost forever, but some of it would be nice.

8 Comments leave one →
  1. August 10, 2009 11:29 pm

    these quests for ‘self’ and ‘who am i?’ they are so mind-bending. Yet at some point I find myself contemplating who I am going to be next, after the most recent depression or whatever.
    I like the part when those difficult questions have passed and I find myself living again, a different life, with some of the old ‘me’ in it and something that will never be the old me.
    It takes me a long time to figure out how much old ‘me’ is left in this new thing.
    A bit of an odd comment to leave so sorry for that; guess I’m following my own thought flow.
    Hope you do manage to curb those doubts about your trip. Budapest? That sounds awesome. I’ve yet to ‘do’ the Eastern European countries but I would LOVE to one day.
    good things wished for you,
    Louise xx

    • August 11, 2009 9:10 am

      Don’t worry about the ‘odd’ comment, I like ones like that; where people add their own thing!

      Hungary is the only Eastern European country I’ve been to, it’s alright but I, personally, don’t think it’s anything special. To be interested, I think you need to be really into architecture!

  2. August 11, 2009 9:55 am

    Water under the bridge answers your question — you will be forever different. Heraclitus of Ephesus (around 500 BC) wrote:

    [i]You cannot step twice into the same river, for other waters are ever flowing on to you.[/i]

    If you go across from Buda to Pest and look back, the Duna has changed meanwhile and so have you.

  3. August 11, 2009 10:06 pm

    I hope things are okay and you manage to enjoy yourself. I hope that depression doesn’t ruin things for you. I know how you feel about missed opportunities and what could have been, but I guess there is little we can do about it. I guess we just have to persevere.

    Take care anyhow xx

  4. August 15, 2009 1:25 am

    Yes, depression has a tendancy to narrow down borders on all sides (inside and out).

    Hope you enjoy your trip to Budapest and that it gives you the confidence for further traveling.

    Take care,

  5. August 20, 2009 10:38 pm

    Hope that your holiday went well and that you were able to enjoy yourself. Hannah X

  6. August 20, 2009 11:04 pm

    Thanks, everyone. Budapest was brilliant. I’ll write more about it when I’ve had time to look at pics and gather my thoughts- I need to find all my stuff first and tidy up so the parentals stop nagging- ah to be living at home…!

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