It is exactly 9:00pm here at Powell library as I begin this hasty post. I must be brief with today’s post, as I have a Russian quiz tomorrow and statistics midterm on Tuesday to study for!
One major theme of this past week is that of time management.
When I first decided to move into the university apartments, I didn’t consider the new responsibilities of apartment life– namely, the cooking and maintenance of the place– to be much of a time suck. Turns out, I was wrong. The time you spend cooking your meals, sweeping the floor, doing groceries and washing dishes, DOES add up. I’m only taking three pretty chill classes this quarter (plus dance outside of school), yet I still find myself working till odd hours and waking up extra early to fit in more study time. It’s probably just a transitional bump in the road. I’ll learn how to better juggle the newfound responsibilities that come with living off campus, and all will be well soon enough.
Second point of discussion– my manias. Oh, how I miss them so. The emotional highs, periods of heightened motivation and waves of free-flowing creativity. I began taking the mood stabilizers shortly before heading back to UCLA, and I’ve since stopped experiencing my manic episodes. I can’t seem to tell whether or not this is a good thing… Sure, my moods are more stable, and I’m no longer knocked around by the dangerous emotional roller coasters that have characterized most my life; but I miss feeling unstoppable. We all know this aspiration of being “unstoppable” is simply another of my illusions, as no human on Earth can go on full throttle, forever. Without maintenance and self care, we burn out. I know that, without my stabilizers, there is a good chance I will continue along my path of mania, until one day, those very manias that I long for at this moment will morph into insanity. Still. I wonder if I can still achieve the things I do, without the mania driving me. I question whether or not my past achievements were genuine. Have all my accomplishments in school and gymnastics been just the manic Belicia talking? Am I and the mania one in the same? Have I just been “cheating” my way through life, with the heightened emotional states serving as a turbo booster and driving force? Is that the only reason why I’ve been able to achieve?
No. I don’t need my manic episodes to be an accomplished person. I must free myself from the chains of the highly addictive manic drug. I must learn to thrive without my intoxicating best friend and worst enemy.
There’s so much more I wish to say on the topic of manic depression and bipolar disorder. But that’s a story for another day.
This past week, I’ve also been reconsidering the path of medical school. I’m taking a greater interest in the field of psychiatry– definitely an underserved, underappreciated field with higher demands than ever. I’ve been blessed to have been seen by only the best psychiatrists, but I know that, more often than not, psychiatrists do not provide adequate mental and emotional care to their patients. Many psychiatrists see their roles as simply that of the robotic “pill dispenser”, and leave the deep talk therapy stuff to the clinical psychologists. I would like to be the psychiatrist who not only can help her patients on the physical scale, but also be able to provide emotional support to those in need. I don’t see why I can’t provide individuals with physical, mental and emotional care. I want to empower myself in all different dimensions to best help those around me, just as my past and current therapists/psychiatrists have.
Psychiatry or not, I am certain of one thing– my fascination with the human psyche. How cool would it be to look deep into the souls of people from ALL walks of life? To collect so many stories, some touching, some inspiring, some rife with tragedy and pain– what a gift that would be. In many ways, clinical psychologists and psychiatrists are what I call the “Transcendents”. They’re the ones holding the access card to the workings of the human mind. They are the special people we go to when we need to release our greatest inner turmoils; the individuals we divulge our deepest, darkest secrets and truths to. What a special thing it is to peer into another human’s pain-stricken soul and fix the underlying issues to ultimately bring that person happiness.
On a whole different note– DANCE! Well, is dance really that different from the former topic of discussion, though? Dance is an art that makes visible to world the raw, human soul of its perpetrator. I love dance, and I know I will continue to dance as long as my body can handle it. Lately, I haven’t been dancing as much as I wish I could, with my time management askew and all. Today, I had dance practice with my new partner. I surprised myself with my impatience and snappiness during our first practice outside of lessons. I was not intentionally trying to be a bitch during training today. I am a passionate person with great expectations and an eagerness to see immediate results. That mindset is all well and good when I’m alone, like in gymnastics. Put another person in the equation, though, and things get trickier. I can’t expect everyone I work with to carry themselves with the same focus and expectation of perfection– the latter, not something to boast about, by the way. While my impatience and grouchiness was in part justified by the fact that my partner showed up an hour and twenty minutes late for practice, I still admit that I must learn to control my explosive passion, which can often sweep me off my feet– and my wits, for that matter.
Alrighty, friends. Lots more to say, but so little time. I must get back to my studies. Oh, one more thing– romance. I can confidently say that I’m absolutely terrified of the prospect of bringing a significant other into my life at this moment. As much as I mope about never having had a boyfriend before, a huge part of me longs to stay in the comfort of the single life. The single life is great! You get to focus on you, and ONLY you. The idea of sharing my heart and life with another person at this point in my life is just too much for me to handle. It’s scary. It’s terrifying. No thank you. Maybe I’m just not emotionally ready for a relationship right now. Will I ever be, then? Oh, how to reconcile personal ambition with the human need for intimate companionship… One of my friends told me the other day that, if I wanted to, I could get a boyfriend in a day, being the “cute Asian girl” I am. Thanks for the compliment, Ishan! Let’s focus on the first part of his statement– that I could get a boyfriend, “if I wanted to”. Do I want to? I don’t think so. The very idea of having a serious boyfriend is so foreign to me, it’s enough to get my palms sweaty and heart racing. At this rate, I’m pretty sure my brothers will be married by the time I begin to feel ready to open my heart to another person. Lol. Well, anyway… it’s 9:46pm now. Better get back to studying! Apologies for the rushed nature of tonight’s blog post… there’s only 24 hours in the day, right?