After protracted debate over when we should go to move to college due to the hurricane, my father finally said to just go on Sunday morning. With rain and strong winds, we proceeded in two cars carefully across the sixty-mile stretch. My mother prayed the Rosary for around three quarters of the trip.
I thought it would be chaos, but it was not; after all, by the time I arrived, already 90% of students had successfully moved in. We did the whole unpacking thing, and my parents invited me to a final lunch with them. We ate some good food, but my mother evidently had her reservations about the people around her and their boastful tattoos. Two hundred dollars for a tattoo, two thousand dollars for a removal.
I also made an illegal U-turn on a very busy road attempting to determine what I can turn right on, and what I cannot, on the route to the long-term parking garage. I felt immense pressure from my father in the other car, maybe just poised to scold me for being a moronic driver once I arrive to the garage. After all, I missed the street I needed to take, made a bad turn (hoping there wasn’t a police car on my side to ticket me), drove into the wrong garage, took too long to make a three-point turn and then decided to just go straight, all the while my dad looking from his car in front of me helplessly, and parked just a little off. In the end, however, he said little.
And indeed, little they said when they dropped me off at my dorm, other than a simple “bye,” as if I was just going to see them tomorrow or something. I simply said my goodbye as well, closed the door, and walked away, knowing that this would mark the beginning of my new life.
Yet some things are not changing in me, and they are restraining me as a result. In this overwhelmingly large campus, my social phobia and want for individuality are amplified.
And what are we all here for? To study. And I haven’t even seen the first of it. I haven’t seen any of my professors in person or taken a legitimate university class yet. I want to put my current knowledge to the test, learn more about what I want to do, talk to people who share my interests, and such and such. Yet, I’m deathly afraid that professors will bite my head off clean at the first opportunity, that they will find every way to weed out and fail students until only the cream of the crop is left standing. And I’m not sure I’m the cream of the crop. I’m working hard simply to stabilize my new life here.
At the end of Monday, I decided to go to the fourteenth floor to view the sunset; otherwise, I’d go insane not having a panoramic view of the cityscape and the sky. I awkwardly made my way up and finally enjoyed the view. The Mirror’s Edge theme started playing in my head again, like it did when I was traveling through Rainbow Bridge in Tokyo. I peered from multiple corners of the building and finally looked down at the activity below. There were people talking to each other, people cycling as a pair, people running on the track of the gym beside the dorm. People looked like they were generally having fun.
And then I thought about myself. Was I really enjoying myself, in solitude? I mean, I had walked around for three hours with an old friend, but to be honest, it felt somewhat burdening. I don’t know. It gave me something to do, as I ran around doing some things, like buying a clicker, but the walk was rather exhausting at the end of the day.
In the end, I just went online and found a self-test for mental health. It said I show signs of social anxiety and things so terrible that if I write them here, I am sure to never get a job.
There is one more thing I must make a remark that simply broke me yesterday. Someone on a community I am a member of made a thread about “how do you feel about [nonbinary gender]?”. The first response from a moderator was, “everyone is awesome.” I responded that the matter could be intensely debated, and one should find opinions elsewhere. He responded that there is no debate, and that if I wanted to keep talking, I could, but the discussion was pretty much closed. The next response from someone else was a YouTube embed for “Everything is Awesome” from, you know, The Lego Movie. At that point, I couldn’t take it anymore. My roommate was here and I could not show tears in front of him, so I took a shower. Upon taking the shower, I simply imploded.
NOT EVERYTHING IS AWESOME. Are murderers, rapists, thieves, serial killers, malnourished children, rebels, white supremacists, and drug addicts awesome? If everything in the world was awesome, there would be no conflict in the world. Stop being socially insular and historically irresponsible.
Evidently, no one even cares about these bad people; do you notice how they have even been entirely removed from this kind of social thinking? They’re not members of society anymore, they’re just bad guys trapped in birdcages for the rest of their lives, because they’re bad and they always will be. Let me tell you that if people actually began to care about the rights of individuals in prisons and made a conscientious attempt to reform prisons to fit the post-industrial European model of rehabilitation instead of mere condemnation (as we have been doing for hundreds of years; practically only the sentences dealt by the judges and amenities offered by these prisons have changed), we would not have a prison population exceeding the population of a major city.
And what about the oppressed and the malnourished? Are you telling me that they do not exist? Stop brainwashing yourself with the sentiment of a world peace that does not exist yet, because the song was psychologically engineered to satirize a fictional society of a likewise blissful, pacifist, brainwashed population of Lego minifigures.
To return to the original question, I will make my own opinion clear without necessarily luring debate. I am all right if someone has made a consultation with a professional and verified themselves to not conform to either male or female, because it was never their choice to feel so wrong in their own bodies; I respect that entirely. However, I am not all right if someone just picks and chooses whatever gender they “want” to be and then asks me to address them in a very specific manner. I have not experienced this personally, nor have I read into the intricacies of the material; hence why there is an entire field called “gender studies” devoted to questions such as, “how did people come to identify themselves in such a specific manner.” If the situation happens, I’ll respect the individual for something else (i.e. their work, their participation in a discussion), but I will certainly feel disdain inside because the situation this person has placed themselves in simply does not feel natural nor correct.
Meanwhile, it seems ironic that in the fight for diversity, I feel persecuted. I don’t go to Reddit anymore, because most news articles relating to Catholics or Catholicism that appear in my front page relate to overblown news articles of corruption or abuse by the clergy, or jokes about the Eucharist or sexual harassment made at the expense of Catholics, regardless of any factual accuracy at all. For instance, the BBC reported an article about the Pope “banning gluten-free Eucharist.” He didn’t ban it, he reiterated that the bread must be unleavened and naturally grown. You can have a 0.0001% gluten bread, but you cannot have 0%, because usually the gluten is replaced with artificial ingredients that contradict the tradition of making bread for consecration. Bread with minimal gluten may be necessary for people with specific conditions, but for the vast majority of people, it’s just a fad.
Anyway, I am scared of classes.
I will shut up before I accidentally “trigger” someone and then said person starts harassing and doxxing me for having openly shared my personal opinions.