Regrets and Mistakes

Truth is, we’ll never know if it’s right until we do.

Regrets have held me back for a really long time. Often, my day is carried out full of thoughts of what I hadn’t done or could have done instead. The ‘What ifs’ just never stop piling one after another. It’s saddening really, to be stuck in the past while trying to move on.

Recently, I was reminded heavily of a mistake I made about two years ago, but let me start by telling the story from the very beginning.

Way way back in grade school, I was a spunky little girl, who was semi confident in all the things she did. I rarely doubted myself and my capabilities as a person. Now, notice that I say, as a person. (I was even Vice President of the school my last year in grade school.)

I forced myself to attend a K-8 middle school after ‘graduating’ 5th grade. Why? Well, my brother was to go that to school and I remember my mom saying how as the older sister, I should go there to protect him. My time there enabled me explore myself more than I initially thought I did. In a sense, I did a lot of trial and error during the time between my 6th and 8th grade. I cursed. I didn’t do homework. I joined yearbook. I volunteered as a sort of TA, sort of because I was paid for the job and not getting credits for it. It built up the characteristic of being adventurous which I carried on in my high school years.

The only con was, I gave up a lot of aspirations during that phase. I didn’t dream big.

During my high school years, the confidence slowly died down, but my dreams returned. I was striving for the best. I secluded myself from hangouts and parties (though I never was much for those). It was always ‘No’ and ‘I can’t’ to invitations. Diligence lasted until my first C-grade and gradually, I lost confidence. Didn’t have honors this, AP that, and just the fact that I had a hard time keeping up frustrated me.

Around senior year, reality hit home when I realized my life plan had crumbled throughout time. Valedictorian was out the window. High Honors? I barely made it. I took a class that I hated (not the people though) because I was pressured into it (by the teacher). And I let my grades slide. Just about everything fell apart for me mid-Senior year. And it doesn’t even include the problems I had with my non-existent love life. I was in a total rut and the self-confusion, identity loss that I experienced at that time took a real toll on me both as a person and an artist.

I carried that feeling through my first two years upon graduation. Even though I was accepted to CSULB, a really great school, I was not at all motivated. Not even art could pull me out which is saying something because art was my means of escape. I failed classes because I ditched classes. I was absorbed in my own dilemma and eventually, I became way more introverted and in turn forced me to be independent because I was afraid to ask for help. I still am.

I wasted two semesters, the lessons and the money, and two years of my youth. I was barely 18. By the time I got to where I am now, Art Institute, I was 20 and my friends were in their 3rd of college.

That kind of improvement was thrown out the window because everyone I’d grown up with was already so far off with their life. At the time, I wasn’t jealous of their accomplishments. I was genuinely happy for them, but this year just changed it for me. Friends have graduated, though not all. Some have traveled to their heart’s content and others are living the life they’ve always dreamed- married, family, single and having adventures. Whatever it is, now, I’m jealous of it because here I am, lost again.

I might be sick, like mentally because I have an identity crisis every year. And every time, I feel like, maybe I’m not in the right place… maybe I’m pursuing something I don’t actually like. I’m so lost that things that were certain before have now become, well, uncertain.

This time, I’ve done such a horrible mistake that reminded me the two wasted years. I don’t want to feel like I’m not doing what I love, but I also don’t want to feel disappointed because I’m not sure once again.

Truth is, we’ll never know if it’s right until we do.

When will that feeling come to me? It came to me my first year in AI. I lost that feeling. Recently, the feeling has returned, but not as strong.

So, how do I find out if I’m really in the right place?


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