There are low points in life, when you feel your butt sitting comfortably on the bottom, or at least what you think is the bottom. When the way out is so far away you have lost sight of it. But there are lower lows than that. And yet lower lows, and lows all the way down. 2021 circa March marked my lowest low yet, what I never realized was that it was to lead to my highest high yet. How? Stay with me. It was (still is) a rocky expedition.
In 2021, I had hit rock bottom, or what felt like it. I shall not bore you with the details but my life lacked flavor and fervor. I was uninspired, thus I was not writing, I was brooding over the lack of fulfillment in my life, I was very pessimistic, my phone was permanently on silent and even when I could see it ringing, I just wouldn’t pick up. Worst of all, I was unwilling to do anything about it. Do you know what that felt like? Eerily similar to being locked up in a coffin for days knowing there is no way out and being told not to panic.
I don’t know precisely what made me snap out of it, but one day I stared at myself in the mirror for a long time, this unproductive person is not me. She is not who I wanted to be when I was eight, and she is not who I want to remember when I am eighty. I was ready to lose the garment of self-pity and self-sabotage and take positive, baby steps forward.
I started being grateful for the little things I had. I started being intentionally productive by doing one thing I’d really rather not do. I was challenging myself you see. I was pushing myself out of that ‘comfort’ prison by holding myself accountable for not completing the tasks I had assigned to myself. Even though I did not feel like doing them.
This is what it felt like; like being set free out of a dark bottle after a 100 years and even though you are yet a caterpillar, you know you will bloom soon, and there is no stopping you unless you stop trying.
I have always been fascinated by the mind, by psychology. I knew I had just recently gone through a mental health crisis, it was something I had read paragraphs on. It was something I could identify on paper, and it is now something I can relate with. And I just had to learn more.Donate
As a very passionate individual, I channeled my passion for psychology into something more productive. I used Google and Quora mostly to teach myself a lot about psychology and mental health. And when the next round of Chevening Scholarship application came, I knew I needed more than informal education. I needed to churn my passion into something more solid, so I channeled all of that fire and zest and I hit send.
A year later, I am writing more poetry and prose, I have resumed blogging, I am running a mental health series on my blog and social media handles, I am organizing sensitization programmes on SGBVs, I am trying to create a niche for myself, I have lost anxiety along the way and I honestly do not miss her, I am far more optimistic than I have ever been, I am taking care of my skin, hair and body, I actively advocate for mental health and I have been chosen for Chevening scholarship. It is hard (very hard) to keep on track, sometimes you lose focus, sometimes you encounter obstacles that threaten to throw you back to the wolves, but one thing is for sure, if you persist and are patient, you will bloom.
Follow me on this journey of how I became a Chevening scholar. I shall share the tips and tricks, the tales and trails, the travel and travails, and other things in between. You too can be a scholar.
Written- February 2022
Edited- August, 2022
From Hafsah, With Love.