The coveted manual to life

People who know me well know I am prone to existential crises.

“Hi, how’s your day?”

“Fine, I’m having trouble figuring out the significance of my existence in this universe again. Wanna grab lunch?”

So today, after I cover my face with my home-made honey, oat, and yogurt face mask and sit awaiting the 20 minutes of marination to dermal health, I am in the middle of yet another dilemma.

Probably because my flight is in three days.

I’m afraid I have not been very eloquent lately, especially since I have been staying out too late and I just hit my head really, really hard on an open cupboard door five minutes ago and am now also marinating a concussion. So bear with me.

But I have noticed that life tends to assault me in waves, especially when it comes to signs – which I believe in very much.

Current crisis: what do I want to do with my life?

Sub-crisis: am I in the right major?

Sub-sub-crisis: what am I going to minor in?

Seeds of doubt:

  • I had a very long conversation with one of my closest friends, a lovely girl on the track to becoming a doctor. As apprehensive as she is about the Pre-Med track, and doubtful of her future as a doctor, she knows she loves science. She has a genuine interest in science and medicine, and when I speak to her I am baffled by her knowledge and passion. That is the part of me I have been struggling to tap into for quite some time.
  • Last night, I was having a discussion with a new friend who asked: why are you studying International Studies? To which I earnestly had no genuine answer.

Why am I studying International Studies (Economics and Political Science)?

International Studies, because I want to travel the world. I want to become a global citizen, to spread myself as thin as possible across this planet and experience everything my miserably short lifespan grants me. Because I dream of one world, a global community unmarred by war, borders, discrimination, agendas. And because I would sooner die than spend a lifetime stuck in one place.

Economics, because I’m good at it. Because I can think like an economist, because I am good at money management.

Political Science, because I like watching the pettiness of it all. The mind games, the manipulation, the corruption, the drama. I like the sociological aspect, watching communities rise and fall and how we never learn from our mistakes. I enjoy the differences between world governments and their startling similarities, and I like the knowledge. Yet if you were to ask me to talk on the topic of politics, I would have nothing to say. Unlike my medical friend who could go on and on about the correlation between diets and diseases, or my musician friends who never seem to shut up about keys and registers and sounds, I am empty.

What is it that I am really after, when I am bedazzled by images of vast nature, of space, of science. When I adore anything having to do with mental illness and psychology?

And what, exactly, am I supposed to do with my life when, at the end of the day, all I want to do is sit on a warm sunny spot of nature near the ocean and write?

I wish I knew which steps to take; sometimes I wonder if I have an innate passion within me that surfaced itself during childhood which I have failed to cultivate and has since withered.

Anyway, too depressing. I’m still trucking along though, even though time is very quickly running out. Perhaps I will find myself one day, and there really is no point in agonizing over the details. Life is but a walking shadow, a poor player that struts and frets his hour upon the stage and then is heard no more. (William Shakespeare)


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