It’s 12am here in the Netherlands and I should definitely be sleeping, but for the fourth time this week I’m tossing and turning. I even googled to see what kind of moon it was and see if that could be a reason for my temporary insomnia (I know). So instead of making myself another Nutella sandwich and binge watching Friends, I’m going to do something useful with my time and write this blog post.
To be honest I wanted to write a post about life here in Maastricht and those of you have read my previous posts are probably going to read this one and think “woah, what happened to funny Robyn?” but I think these are maybe a few things that I needed to get off of my chest before the drunken memoirs really get underway!
So I turned 21 in December and so far it’s been one of the best years of my life and aside from the fact that I live in a pastry laden European country I also think it’s because I learnt some pretty solid life lessons the last few months. So in a somewhat open letter to myself here are a few things which I’m going to try and remember for the rest of my life…
1) Life is what happens when you’re busy making plans (I promise they won’t all sound as cheesy as this one).
I struggled for a long time because my life wasn’t going in the direction that I thought it should go in. I didn’t do the whole university thing straight after school and I panicked as I watched all my friends move on with their lives as I did something polar opposite to them. My only response was to try and plan/control my life as much as possible, I wanted to be like them…I think I need to be like them. Looking back I wish I’d stopped, taken a breath and realised that I was working too hard trying to control things that just didn’t need controlling. It’s okay to have a plan but it’s all okay to let things take their course.
2) Doctors at some point in your life will call you fat/too skinny
In my case it wasn’t the latter and I remember being so heartbroken that some doctor had the audacity to make a comment about my weight. I mean my doctor should definitely have broken the news in a nicer way but it’s one of those things.At 21 I’m now definitely much healthier but not because someone shamed me into losing weight but because I realised I wanted to get healthier for me (and because I couldn’t walk a flight of stairs without going into cardiac arrest).
3) Don’t fight for people’s attention.
I really can’t stress this one enough. Everyone has felt this at one point in their lives, that maybe if they dressed a certain way or talked to the right people they would get the attention they deserved. But the reality is some people are meant to teach you lessons in life and if they’ve been dicks to you, it’s the lesson that they shouldn’t be in your life.You are good enough the way you for those who truly love you.
4) It’s okay to be alone.
So like I said I went through some life changes last year which left me in a totally new position in life. We’ve all been through it, we’ve all felt rejection and loneliness but those feelings shouldn’t be filled by random people just to make you feel better. It’s okay to be alone (if you’re alone you can totally wear the same pyjamas for the whole weekend no matter how much food you spill on yourself). And also you make yourself great, not other people.
5) You’re probably not as clever as you think (don’t worry nobody is).
I started university last year, a European university where the language of instruction is English.Which great as this is for me, a native speaker, but it also had the effect of bringing me straight back down to reality with a thud. Most of my classmates are not native speakers and they are literally better at writing papers and general uni stuff than I am. Realising that you literally have the easiest time of it will well and truly humble you but also kind of encourage you to pick up a newspaper or google who the Turkish PM is to hide the fact your brain has been pickled by alcohol and that you’re a shocking example of the British education system.
So thanks for sticking by the cheese-fest that post just was. I’ll bless you all with some ridiculous Dutch antics in my next post, don’t worry.