Current status: It’s complicated

…but it’s not what you think.

Who was I? What did I want? What did I stand for?

Nothing. Nothing. Nothing.

The cold sweats started slowly and got more frequent over time – something within me wasn’t at peace. Has that ever happened to you? Random meltdowns where you question everything? Your friends and family, love life, lifestyle, job? At first it seemed like unnecessary influences and self inflicted misery. But then it began to hit me harder with every passing night. For days I had been lost in empty pillow talk questioning my existence and actions. There were nights I would randomly break into sobs. In many ways, I felt like I was compromising on life instead of truly living it. I needed change to free myself from my own demons and chains that tied me down – to attachment, to fear, to a safety net, to people and places. Art and books were my escape, keeping me up and away from these nightmares. But exhaustion soon took over and I would slip back into these nightmares.

The only person to save me from sinking was me.

I willingly settle for what I think is okay and within my comfort zone. Comfort to me equals happiness, and it didn’t matter if I was compromising on what could be versus what was. There is no prep talk while you’re adulting. You simply cope and battle it out with the different generations before and after you. I wasn’t even close to living on my own and juggling between a family and job and yet, the seas in my soul were choppy.

Life is what you make it and I wasn’t quite happy with what I was doing with mine.

We refer to happiness so loosely, I didn’t know what it meant to be happy any more. Happiness was eating a one-on-one hot pan pizza on a Friday night; it was riding up to a spectacular view. Was that real happiness? I wondered, do we overthink life unnecessarily? Was I too young to feel this way or too foolish to give in to a random meltdown?

Work was great but it wasn’t enough anymore. My love life brought more heartache than joy. The nightmares were stemming from the negativity I surrounded myself with, from the things I settled for. I was beginning to become more negative and that translated into my unconscious. I was becoming unlike myself, my young tenacious self. I was being dragged deeper in this pit of fire – I was burying myself in the bitter comfort pit.

Everyone has a breaking point and I was dealing with mine. That’s when it hits you. It hits you that you need change and you need it now. You could either continue settling for mediocrity or you could take control. You could take control of how you feel and set out on a path that brightens your soul instead of dampening your own spirit.

In that one week of praying and looking for answers, I knew it was time to move. I couldn’t go on with my demons taking over me forever; they had to burn, and they had to burn now. You realise that there is no right time for change and there never will be. You can’t plan this shift, it’s instinctive. You go with your gut because there is no better way out.

You can either drown in your own tears or let the noise of the world drown in your laughter.

If you were to personify life as it were – it is like your shadow, always by your side. If you choose to walk in darkness, chances are you will lose your one constant companion. Walk in the light and you’re never alone.

I am not adventurous. I am not too fond of risk. But at this point, being comfortable seemed to be more terrifying than taking a risk. Because that meant that I wanted nothing more out of life. I got so busy clocking in hours and fantasising about my idea of love and life, I got comfortable and that didn’t seem right. Where was my spirit? My plans and purpose? My soul?

Life after all isn’t a bundle of troubles. It is a bundle of opportunities for you to thrive and shine – in relationships, places and experiences.

At first I didn’t know what I wanted. Maybe a new job? A new place? What I did know was that I didn’t want any more nightmares. I wanted to be happy again and so I took the lead. I didn’t know what I was getting into, I saw light and I walked towards it.

It’s been a month since I joined University and changed cities. I’m nowhere close to my comfort zone. Each day is a new challenge with exploring the roads and routes, meeting new people, understanding new culture, finding my favourite spot and so on. It is an adventure. I’m yet to find out whether or not it was the best decision but it certainly has been right direction. Being here, away from the negativity that kept me up at night, I feel better and more alive. Waking up to a new challenge every day makes me happy.

Life right now is complicated and that’s okay. It’s okay because I’m becoming myself – one day, one person, one place at a time. It’s okay because I’m a step closer towards finding who I am, what I want and what I stand for. It’s okay because I’m alone but not lonely. It’s okay because I now sleep at night, not worrying about waking up in a cold sweat. It’s okay because I’m finally…happy.

Becoming myself / Livia Fălcaru / Behance