I am not the person I was One Year Ago.
I can still remember exactly how I was feeling when I wrote this post and I can’t believe that it has been a year since that day. This year there isn’t quite as much snow on the ground, but it is colder. It is so cold that no one wants to go outside unless it is absolutely necessary. It is so cold that news outlets post little charts that tell you how quickly your exposed skin can get frostbitten. Despite the cold and the parallels in the weather, I don’t share the same sentiment that I expressed a year ago.
“I am deflated and exhausted, I have no sense of humour, and I just want a vacation from my life.”
I was in the middle of writing my final exams at this time last year. I was experiencing emotional strife about some of the important relationships in my life. I was feeling like a bad Mom and a bad student. I was questioning whether I was doing the right thing in my life and if I was cut out for a career in medicine. Today I feel differently. I am still exhausted and I have a week to go before I am finished my general surgery rotation and can start my Christmas break. Despite that, I feel fairly competent as a senior medical student and I am looking forward to graduation in the spring. I am excited for the residency match and I am hopeful that everything will work out the way I am hoping. The emotional strife I had over one particular relationship last year has mostly resolved and the relationship has only gotten better: I have gone from dreaming about being a friend with my mentor, to actually having that relationship.
I won’t lie, some days I am down and I just want to give up. I still lament some of the things I do and I still have lower self esteem and self confidence than I would like. However, it is so, so much better than it was before. I can say that for certain because all I have to do is close my eyes and bring myself back to the moment I took this picture… I can remember how low I was then – how difficult every day seemed to be – how I put one foot in front of the other because I felt like I had no other option. I know that I don’t feel that way anymore and it is so rewarding to know that I have come such a long way.
“Everything is frozen, but it’s frozen in beauty. The trees are missing their leaves, but they stand naked and strong and beautiful. The snow is piled high, but it’s white. And pure. And beautiful.”
The winter here is beautiful and I made this metaphor comparing the frozen surroundings outside with what I hoped was inside of me, just being hidden by the desperation. Today, a year beyond that day, I know that I was right. The metaphor was accurate and I know that now because over the past year, I have had the opportunity to see small glimpses of the strength and beauty of my being. When it really comes down to it, I am happy.
Despite the horrible cold that we are experiencing right now, I don’t feel like it is a reflection of my innermost feelings. The seasons change every year, and every year we know what to expect from them. The parallels that I made last year just don’t make sense anymore. Even though it is winter and it is cold and dismal outside, I know that’s not me in the inside. Unlike the seasons, I have changed for the better. I have broken away from the predictable pattern and I have brought myself to a place that is new, exciting, and worth an exploration.
I am a stronger person than I was One Year Ago.