In the past few years, when I’ve hit a particularly low point in my life, I’ve taken to putting myself through an assessment phase, where I look at my life from as many aspects as possible — professional, romantic (if and when that aspect actually applies), mental, and occasionally — though very rarely — familial. The last time I did it was nearly two years ago, when I decided to stop asking God, “Why doesn’t he (whom I thought at the time was the love of my life) love me?” and just look at the big picture and figure out the answer for myself. Even though that answer never quite materialized (or I just refused to accept it), I was able to take a good look at myself and the things about me that had changed, remained the same, and desperately needed remedying.
So, today, when I thought about the fact that in a month I would have been at my current job for two (two!) years, in my relationship for one (one!) year, and very likely going blind from all the proofreading that my job requires me to do, I decided to begin a new round of self-assessments. And, as is the case with all my previous assessments, I did not like what I found.
1. My tolerance for many things has dwindled at an alarming rate. I have lost all patience for — among many, many things — laziness, incoherence, loquaciousness, and bad driving. This is very bad because three years ago, I don’t remember ever being so impatient and short-tempered over such things. Except perhaps bad driving.
2. I no longer feel the need to make new friends. Not that I ever felt an overwhelming desire to, but when I was in college, I made some semblance of an effort, because of the Royal Pitches. These days, the handful (literally, one hand full) of friends I have, and the people in Afham’s absolute closest circle that I’ve come to know over the past few months, are the only ones that I am willing to be around. This is, also, very bad, because it only serves to reaffirm the impression everyone has of me as a disdainful bint, and I think on some level Afham wishes I would be less of a sociopath.
3. I have made (metaphorically) silent adversaries of people I do not know — a statement which is in and of itself an oxymoron. I’ve heard of people who came across this blog and, from reading some of my entries, made up their minds on what kind of a person I am. I’ve heard of people who work in the same company as I do — though not necessarily in the same building — who appear to know who I am, but of whose existence I know nothing. And they have all formed some opinion or other — usually negative — about me. This would be a bad thing if I actually cared exactly what people are saying about me, but the fact that I don’t care is in and of itself a bad thing as well.
4. I have become immune to anything even remotely related to my job. My will to get out of bed and go to work can be gauged by the hour I walk into the office and the number of hours I spend in there. My love for my work can be determined by how many errors I bother to correct when proofreading; to this day I doubt if I have missed out a single one. My relationship with my colleagues can be measured by the length of our conversations and how much regard I have for their gossipmongering and politicking. The good thing is that it allows me to block out the unnecessary drama and focus on doing what I am paid to do. The bad thing is that I am still on this job.
5. For the first time in my life, I am in as close to normal a relationship as I can be, free of overpossessive, domineering, cheating, vapid narcissists. And yet, not for the first time in my life, I am in a relationship which entails spending every waking (and sometimes sleeping, as indicated by, yes, actual nightmares) moment of my day wondering if I am ever good enough, if I will remain good enough in the years to come, and if I have ever managed to measure up to my predecessor(s).
6. I really, really do not handle knowing, hearing or talking about past relationships and partners, both his and mine, well. In spite of the creed I have tried so hard to live by, my intolerance for all conversations or even insinuations about former halves has reached new heights. This is probably brought on by the fact that from the day I met Afham my world has been growing perpetually smaller and I feel as though I can’t breathe without this diminishing world closing in around my ears. And this is a very, very bad thing, because I know that my insecurities, my anger and the old baggage will become this relationship’s undoing.
7. I have become slightly less cynical about relationships, thanks to my own normal-to-me relationship. And if my new lease on love is anything to go by, the slow demolition of the Wall of Cynicism is a good thing. But, knowing my luck in all things love, I will just have that much more to build up all over again at some point in my life (maybe there hasn’t been that much demolition after all?).
Of the seven (seven!) findings I have listed, there are only two that I would not change. As for the rest, I’m not sure how soon the necessary changes will come, but I have a feeling that by my next assessment they would probably all be irrelevant anyway.