As I write this I’m on a bus back from Edinburgh to Glasgow. A trip I wanted to take to see a few things I missed on my first visit and to finally meet another study abroad friend I had been talking to online for a couple months. I also thought going to Edinburgh would be a nice little day trip to get me out of my usual surroundings. Lately, Glasgow has been really burning me out.
And turns out I needed this trip more than I thought.
You see, yesterday morning when I was all ready to go, bag packed and about to walk out the door, I literally almost started crying. I didn’t want to go. I got scared. Of what? I’m not sure. I’ve been to Edinburgh before for two days completely alone before with no issues. I should have been excited to go back to the city!! Especially since I had found some nice vegan cafes and knew all the cherry blossoms were in full bloom all around the city and castle.
But instead there I was standing in my flat’s doorway, about to cry, trying to get myself to not just go lay in bed all day. I even tried to compromise with myself. “Just go to a cafe here and work Caitlyn. Go back to that vegan coffee shop on the West end.” And while I really wanted to listen to this voice, I just kept repeating, “If I don’t get on that bus I’ll regret it.” So I walked the five minutes to the bus station and got on that bus.
The hour bus ride there I was going back and forth between silently cursing myself for going and praising myself for doing something my mind was screaming at me not to do. But as soon as I stepped off that bus and went to my first destination, the Scottish Portrait Gallery, I immediately felt better. No more regrets, no more sad feelings, no more weird funk. I felt reenergized and ready to allow myself to enjoy life again.
I had been in a weird funk since Wednesday, so I was glad to be back as myself. The exact same kind of funk I was in for almost two months when I first came abroad. I felt depressed, lonely, my social anxiety was awful and caused panic attacks if I had to even think about leaving my room. But because I’ve dealt with this weird funks my whole life actually (just never to the extreme I have experienced here) I’ve picked up on quite a few things that help me survive and not want to give up completely.
Appreciate other people’s art
Over the past few years, I’ve slowly discovered my love for art. I always loved reading, but it wasn’t until I got to college that I also discovered my love of drawing, painting, and photography. Then after going to a hundred million museums here in Europe, I realized I have a thing for just looking at other people’s art, not just creating it.
Sometimes I get in a weird funk because I feel like I’m not creating enough, or the right things. And that has definitely played a part recently. I’ve taken so many photos since being abroad, and editing them has just become this huge chore I never want to do. So when I went to Edinburgh this week, I purposefully left my DSLR at home and just went out to enjoy everything through my eyes, and not a lens.