Sometimes inspiration stems from the most bizarre places at the most peculiar of times. It's a Saturday night and as a post-Friday recovery, I've spent the evening in a onesie, flicking through Glamour magainze, with Desperate Housewives playing in the background and slowly but surely getting through too much Häagen Dazs Salted Caramel.
Between drifting in and out of ice cream comas, I began thinking to myself, 'I'm a student, this is not how I should be spending my Saturday night'. And that thought process has lead to to this whole blog post. A can of worms has been opened.
Why is it, I, as a fully fledged adult, with no more or less rights than the next person, thought what I was doing, staying in instead of going out, was 'wrong'. Why should I have to apologise for not wanting to go to a sweaty club and getting drunk to the point of sickness. Why is the first question, when people find out you're a student, 'I bet Freshers was MAD'. This isn't the only stigma I've been noticing more and more recently, but it's one which has hit me with full force as student life has taken swing. If people want to go out every night or every weekend, I wouldn't ever stop them or judge them, so why judge the reversal? Am I not allowed to indulge my liver to a weekend without it crying out for help?
And the pressures of fellow humans doesn't stop there, only being 19, an age I would definitely still consider young, I am constantly asked if I'm dating anybody. And, when I say no, as I have been saying on and off for the majority of my teen life, the immediate reply is 'Oh what a shame', or 'But you're so xxxx (fill with empty adjective)'. And I've finally realised, actually, it's okay to be single. It's not a shame to not have another half. I have plenty of time for the love stuff. Being an independent person is not a burden, and I shouldn't have to justify it. Even the fictional life guru to all women, Bridget Jones, has a dependency on men like no other. But sometimes I just want to scream at the telly 'Man up Bridget. Happiness doesn't depend on Mr Darcy, happiness bloody depends on you!' Just because you don't have a man at your side, or vice versa, it doesn't mean there is something wrong with you. And it shouldn't be a reason for anybody to think there is.
Through my teenage years, I've learnt the expectations of the people around you, are the ones by which you judge yourself. And I just think it's something that needs to change. We are all individuals, we all do our things and have our own feelings and think our own thoughts. Some people want to be Doctors, some people want to be artists and some people want to be Kim K impersonators and that is okay. I'm sure she won't mind me saying, my younger sister recently dropped out of sixth form. She'd completed a year, absolutely hated it and failed her AS's, so after half a term of Upper Sixth (in England this is senior year, or the school year you turn 18 which is not compulsory over here), she decided it was making her life miserable and so, she never went back. And actually, all me and my parents were thinking is 'Thank goodness'. Sarah got herself a full time job within 3 days of leaving and is on a different road of happiness. Because these other roads totally exist, most people just don't want to give them a go when it's not the norm.
To be completely and utterly frank, I think people tend to forget their ultimate goal should be happiness. Self happiness at that. And for some people that means being a runway model, for others that means never settling down and for a lot they don't know where happiness is even hiding. But don't let your happiness be defined by other people and what you should or shouldn't be doing. If you want to go out and get crunk every night (maybe not quite so much liver-happiness there), then that's up to you and if you want to sit in and watch films or even go to the library and spend your evening there, people shouldn't be telling you that's not okay. That is totally, 100% okay. Do your own thing, be your own human being and find your own happiness through your own means. Expectations of other people definitely don't define you.
Ciao for Now!