I recently read a piece of advice aimed at hopeful writers that has stuck in my mind. It went along the lines of:
'If you want to write something, make sure you have something you want to say, a reason for writing'
I have full confidence in the reasons why I want to write and what I want to say, as well as the motive behind this blog. Since starting it earlier this year, I have tried to maintain a degree of frankness and resolute honesty, and hope to continue to do so. Therefore, this post shall be no different, I shall continue to strive to be honest, and hope that anyone in a similar position may feel a twinge of empathy and relief.
With a mere four days until I move from Doncaster to Cornwall, my curiosity towards how I'm feeling has embodied me with as much intensity as the emotions themselves. A cocktail of excitement, apprehension, trepidation, hope and fear have whirred around my head with increasing strength since the move to Cornwall sunk in. What strikes me as odd is how similar my situation is to that of just over a year ago.
In September 2010 I transferred my university course to Carlisle and moved in with complete strangers. I knew no-one, and had only visited the city once. What followed was a disappointing course, alienation from my housemates and mounting stress that led me to become ill. Of course, within adversity lies opportunity. The experience gave me the ability to speak my mind when faced with someone I don't agree with, and realise my own mental strength and propensity to cope under pressure. Herein lies the difference between then and now that has sparked my curiosity - I exclusively felt excitement before moving to Carlisle, whereas this time around I am terrified. If I could have predicted what was to follow from my move to Carlisle, I would have approached it with a much gloomier mindset. Likewise, I may well have no reason at all to feel nervous this time around.
With hindsight comes regret and guilt, the feeling that you could have done more, or if only you had done things a little differently. Through every stage of my life so far, I have looked back and felt I could have done a better job. I've come to realise that foresight is just as pointless. Before embarking on something, I've hardly ever been correct in my prediction. I thought Carlisle would be amazing, I was wrong. I thought my second year at the University of Lincoln wouldn't be particularly great, it was great.
I now know to ignore the terrified knot in my stomach. If we could accurately predict how experiences were going to turn out before they unfolded, we would never do things that would fall short of our expectations. Going to Carlisle was the best thing I ever did- I became I better judge of character, more independent, and a lot braver. I may have come away with scars, but they're propelling me to Cornwall. I'm going with self-belief and confidence, and the knowledge that even if things don't turn out perfectly, I shall once again, learn and grow. Or at least, I might be able to surf.