In any normal year, the 2nd of July falls exactly in the middle with 182 days either side of it. It also happens to be my birthday, so last week in the middle of 2014 I turned 20 years old.
Usually when it nears my birthday and I know half the year will have passed, I like to look at the first half of the year and see what I’ve liked about it, what I haven’t liked and what I want to continue into the latter half. Sadly by March I considered this year a write off; that’s not to say there hasn’t been some great things happening but they’ve just been over-ridden by the emotional turmoil that’s taken over since February. However, the second half of this year has already started off relatively well, I’ve earned some money and I’m on a plane in a couple of hours to escape for some time, clear my head and figure out ‘a plan’.
That’s what has been one of the hardest things of all of this I think, people asking ‘So, what’s the plan?’ because I simply do not know. Does anyone know at 19 or 20 what ‘the plan’ is? If they do, they’re lucky. One day I had little to complain about and the next my whole life was up in the air. Just like that. Since then I’ve had to think about funeral arrangements, bills, wills, scattering ashes, panic attacks, mad anxiety and God knows what else. None of this is what I had in mind for 2014.
One decision I’m glad to have made this year is my tattoo. I got it done the day after Mother’s Day and it’s a constant reminder of love from my mum which will now be with me forever and I couldn’t be more pleased with it. It’s taken straight from the last birthday card she gave me, but I also found identically kisses on something else that I found yesterday while packing up the last of my things in the house. It was a small plastic card she’d given me last year which says on the front “You’re a special daughter who I love with all my heart and I’ve been so proud of you right from the very start. Whatever the future holds I just want you to know you’re wished a world of happiness wherever you may go.” Needless to say, I bawled when I found it and it’s staying in my purse to be carried round with me.
Grief throws the worst conundrums at you. Somehow you’re meant to deal so many important things while trying not to cry every day for hours on end, keep a level head and try to understand concepts you’ve never considered before. The lack of enthusiasm I’ve felt for the things I loved only months ago is heartbreaking, because when you can’t even feel a sort of passion anymore you feel like you’re losing pieces of yourself.
I’ve watched the house that’s been my home for 15 years slowly be emptied, and when I come back to the UK it’ll feel like just a memory. It’s been a hard process to go through even though I made the decision to rent the house therefore empty it. I feel like I’ve been useless in this process because I get too emotional and too attached to things that meant little to me before but now I perceive them as the little things that make up the house.
I’ve scattered my mother’s ashes to sea and dealt with the emotional struggle that comes with it. We threw roses into the water after the ashes and I clutched onto mine for so long, not wanting to throw it in and that be it.
Though I’m only 20 I certainly feel a lot older. Some days I feel like giving up before anything has even started, and I hate feeling like this. I’m hoping the summer will change that and things will start to look up. I’d like the fog to lift from my head and for things to be clear again, because until then I’m still rather stuck. For now, I’m getting on this plane and finally having some time for myself, and I can’t wait.