I once had a teacher who told us that kids can only concentrate for as long as their age in minutes – so he gave our group of mostly fifteen year olds little breaks every quarter of an hour. Being younger than all of my classmates, I took great delight in waiting until fourteen minutes was up and then goofing off for the last minute before the break – protesting that according to his own theory it would have been impossible for me to concentrate for a single second longer.
Well, I still get in trouble for sassing my teachers, but at twenty years of age I can concentrate for a full thirty minutes of fingers-racing-across-the-keyboard productivity before I have to sidle into Scott or Chelsey’s bedroom, throw myself dramatically onto the bed and declare ‘I’m boored’, ‘I don’t know what I’m doing with my liiife’ or, a current favourite ‘I’m dropping out of uni to be a stripperrr’ . I normally complain for a while then announce that I’m ‘going back to my desk to cry quietly into my laptop’, faff for a bit, and get down to another thirty minutes of work.
Or, I sit at my desk wondering if being a stripper would make me feel empowered or not.
Today, I decided to write this (priorities, people, priorities) because I realised something today while lying in the foetal position on top of my duvet trying to find the words to write my dissertation proposal.
What I realised is a terrifying and horrible thing to know – but here it is:
These are the best days of my life.
Last year, if someone had told me that my University years would be the best of my life, I would have said ‘I really bloody hope not’. But here we are. I’ve made a life that exists in the space between the Royal London Hospital on the Whitechapel Road, and a house just off Victoria Park, and it’s really really good.
I mean, a part of me really hopes that that’s not true. I’m excited for whatever comes next after graduation, I’m excited to travel and find a job (I’m lying, I’m not at all excited about searching for ways to sell my labour for money until I die) and I assume that eventually I’ll get married (gonna be the best day ever – get your tears of happiness and wonder ready to go) and I’ll have kids (and that’s s’posed to be, like, excessively good although based on my own attitude as a child – see examples of sass above – I honestly can’t figure out how) and that will all be good. But it won’t be good in the way that this is good.
And that’s my thirty minutes up.