happy new year! - rent, the summary of the past year.

I Think I Should Be Laughing
Yet I Forget
Forget How To Begin

I'm Feeling Something Inside
And Yet I Still Can't Decide If I Should Hide
Or Make A Wide Open Grin

Last Week I Wanted Just To Disappear
My Life Was Dust
But Now It Just May Be A Happy New Year
A Happy New Year

Songs really speak to you sometimes, don't they? Almost as if you're whole life was able to be told on a three-minute record, from which you might learn more than you've ever learned in school. A solemn hymn, as sent from above to teach you something that you should have known, or need to know for your future. Music is truly the words of the undefined, almighty Power. Or a thing that's meant to tell you a story, and to think.

The year of 2006, Anno Domini, is on the agenda for now. Another year in the story of our Earth has been told, another year that has changed it to both the better and worse. A year of deaths, but also births, and in the same way sadness and grief, and happiness and joy.

The past year has, for my part at least, been a year of great changes. When the year started I was in 9th grade, I had just weeks before been to a once-in-a-lifetime experience after becoming regional champion in DN:s Nutidsorientering, I was me, and noone else. Just as it had always been, me walking alone in a crusade against the world and enjoying every step as an underdog. Facing a year that would end a soon-to-be ten year long fight to keep up inspiration in a hopeless institution of learning, finally an end to the school-time where I felt underrated even though I was closing in on top grades and unstimulated since some things were so basic that I almost laughed at them in disgust.

Yes, when 2006 started I was 15, I celebrated the New Year laughing in front of the computer, I was walking the road of life alone, I was proud and I was as sure of my capacity as anything. I was a king in my own universe, and was happy with the way everything was.

School began once again after the holidays, and everything went back to normal after a as usual totally relaxed holiday. And then school continued, in the slaw slow walk as every year before. We were closing in on our final grades though, something that stirred up panic among big parts of the ninth-graders. I didn't freak out too much about it, I felt confident and knew that I would get good grades. My only goal was to get my MVG in Maths, a goal that I also managed to fullfill.

Snow came and disappeared, and then came again. Sometime in the beginning of April it finally disappeared for real and made way for the coming spring. And so the world got greener, and in May the green covering was interrupted by coloured spots were the flowers grew. Summer was here once again, another time full of sun, beach and promises. The graduation party for the ninthgraders of Västervångskolan in Ystad was held at Öja Krog, an evening of celebration, talking to eachother, comparing grades, and saying good-bye. And as chairman of the students council I held a speech, that seemed to be at least somewhat appreciated.

The evening was nice, and when the final hour as ninth-graders was a'coming the tears joined in for the final moments. Tha last good-bye, the ultimate end. At midnight, when it ended, almost everyone's eyes were coloured red by the tears and practically everyone had spilled at least one tear. I however stood there with my eyes as dry as they can be without being unhealthy. I didn't cry, I didn't feel need nor motivation for it.

I believed that I would get depressed and long for the ol' lost times of Västran a little later in the summer, but it took me a few weeks to realize that it wasn't coming. I did miss my old school and me olf mates in one way, but apparently not enough to shed any tears at all. So I didn't, and kept on with my life.

The summer started with the same lazy way as always, a time for sleeping and staying up late just because. Long summer nights with the sun a'knowledging the existence of our Northern country. The whole world in bloom, and not a cloud to be seen.

I spent the first one and a half month of the holiday hanging out with people. On Midsummer's Eve me and my family escaped the country to celebrate on our own in Copenhagen, but practically all of the remaining time of the holiday (except for one trip to Gothenburg and a long sightseeing on Österlen) was spent at home. Me and my father had decided that we were going to fix our garage drive this summer, and this was the reason that we didn't have any money to do long travels.

So at first my days was spent with digging, digging and more digging. Apart from the digging, I started going to the gym, spent time with some people down by the beach, dug some more, and stopped going to the gym.

Somewhere in the middle of the summer something made me think about my situation. The company I had for the days wasn't a company that I really longed for nor appreciated that much, and for every day that passed I found more reasons not to stay in that situation. So one night with the stars as my only company I stated that well, the world does not have to change because of my situation, but I sure as hell didn't see any reason to change because of my situation. I knew somewhat who I was, I would not get to be a noone among everyone else, without any will of my own but a slave of trends. I was me, and intended to keep on with that.

The side-effect of this was loneliness. The people I used to hang out with in the beginning of the summer were the only ones, or at least so I presume. No matter how hard I tried I couldn't change the fact. I was alone, and so had been for a long time without caring nor knowing about it myself. That typical guy down the corridor, the one everyone knows about and the one that's talked to practically everyone. The one that looks to stay out of unnecessary conflicts, a smart-ass in both its positive and negative ways. A person that very many people say that they know, but that noone knows for real.

I believe I was somewhat responsible for that situation myself. During my years in town I never really tried to establish any contact with people, I enjoyed being alone. I told myself that quite a lot, but it didn't really help me any in the situation I was.

Hour after hour, day after day was spent at home. I had work to do in the mornings with moving bricks for the garage drive, and when I was finished with that I went in again. Eventually we ran out of bricks and the garage drive was all of a sudden finished, and in a flash I lost my only real reason to go outside. So I stayed inside, with curtains down and my computer as the only source of light. I spent the time alone, and kept it in that way since I was incapable to change it for the better. I was alone.

That half of the summer was like one big black fog, with every day alike the other and the only difference being what I wrote and didn't write on an Internet forum where I spent almost all of my time. I was bored to death, and all this time of course made me think a lot over my situation.

The slight feeling of being depressed was inevitable. In one single hit it felt like the world had punched me down from my pillar of power, and crushed the self esteemed and confident person I was. What use do you have from knowing a lot of things, if you are without any company, and without people really caring, or perhaps noticing? The ones that asked got my answer, no, I don't feel too good. The ones that didn't ask didn't get any chance to hear what I was up too.

I didn't cry. I stated that it was soon to come anyway.

I spent 27 days without leaving the house, without going outside. The only fresh air I got was from my only slightly opened window. The world outside was full of people having the time of their lives, and I didn't feel for watching peolpe living while I felt... dead.

In my time of misery I had the luck of meeting a person over the internet though. A girl, whom I started talking to via the Internet forum I mentioned earlier. And all of a sudden I got not just deep and true sympathy, I had a person that made serious tries to help me. It was her existence, the hope of talking to her, if so only for a few minutes, that kept me from staying in bed all day, hating and staring in to a wall.

Loving her for existing.
But hating my life for being without any happening or meaning.
Hating myself for being unable to do anything.
Hating the world for not understanding or caring.

I didn't cry. I just stated that I was falling, and kept on falling.

I had three small glimpses of light during this period, which was more or less the closest I've ever come to breaking down totally. One was this girl that I met now, and talked to everyday. The second was another girl, that I'd met on the internet long before and sadly lost much touch with, a contact that I desperately tried keeping alive. And the third being the gymnasium coming closer by the minute. A world where I'd finally get the stimulation I wanted and so much needed a place where I could find new people and those friends that I so desperately longed for.

For each day that passed I fell deeper ito the black pit, and got more and more turned inside-out. I had problems appreciating anything, and I felt like shit constantly. What can you otherwise be defined as if noone feels any need to pull you up when falling? That was what I thought, and still today I haven't forgotten the feeling. I will never forget the total hopelessness that I felt hour after hour. Day after day.

I didn't cry. I tried desperately to stay over the water surface.

On the 22nd of August, the gymnasium finally started. My hope was now somewhat restored, if one that's lost all illusions can hope, and perhaps now, perhaps now I would come back to life from my walk in the valley of the eternal shadow. It was raining, pouring down, the first day. And perhaps that was a worse omen than I thought of at first.

The first day I was positive. After a week I still hoped. When two weeks had gone, I was there again, spending all of my free time by the computer. Skipping out of lessons since I couldn't be bothered. Lying awake night after night and once again feeling the loneliness tearing my heart out to barbeque it in front of my eyes.

I didn't cry. I felt too hopeless too.

It wasn't only the fact that I still couldn't find that close friend I so much needed, someone to lean on to when storms were coming and someone to be able to call in the middle of the night that still would help you with whatever your problem might be. Nor the lack of company outside of school.

No, because at Samhällsprogrammet at Österportskolan, I couldn't even rely on what I'd always turned to to get support and clear my thoughts with: The studies and the will to know more. I didn't develop in any way, lessons started to get repetitive, and the only thing I could do was to watch my last outpost fall apart. It wasn't at all what I'd hoped for, and now I surely felt like the last strike from above smighted down in my life. I was doomed to fall in decline.

But through all this, the constant was that girl I met on the forum. She didn't desert me even though I didn't do anything but whine, she stayed. She didn't get silent when I stated that everything's a hell, she wanted to help me out of it. And when I stated that my school was a place that I didn't even want to go to in the mornings, she eventually asked me why I did. Why I did go there, to a place that didn't just make me feel bad, but upheld the feeling and strengthened it.

When she said that, only to log out a few minutes later to go to sleep, a seed was planted in my brain. I realized that I had to do something. So the next day I contacted another school in another town, with a special sort of program that still doesn't exist in my hometown: IB. Said to be challenging, and told to be prestigeous. I had the phone in front of me, but just couldn't dial the number. Was this the right thing? Was I on track of something? Or would I fail totally, what if I didn't get in there and what if, what if my situation didn't get any better at all?

It took me half an hour before I dialed the number. And I got the answer I sadly expected: it was full, not place for anyone more. However, the coordinator added, there was a person there that was doubtful about continuing there and thought of changing. So we decided to stay in touch.

The next day she called back, and the doubtful person had moved in the right direction. There was a vacant spot.

All of a sudden I felt something that I barely recognized after a long period of feeling like shit under a horse's hoof. I felt encouraged. I had a way out, and I had to seize it. I was convinced that I would not be able to hand three years like this. For the first time in months, I felt hope.

She called on a Thursday, and on the Tuesday me and my parents got into the school to talk it through, and so that I could do the application tests, one in English and one in Maths. I sat there alone, in a room with a big window through which I had the sun dancing through, and a for me totally different world to be seen.

I did the English without any problems. Maths have however never been a strong subject of mine. And after doing the tests I would have to wait until the following Monday to get a definite answer whether I got in or not. Sure, I got the results of the test that week. On the Friday, in school when I checked my mailbox as on every break, I saw that there was a mail from the school. I went totally cold, my blood froze and my brain felt like it ran out of oxygen. Before I thinked about it anymore, and thereby probably would freak out, I opened the mail.

I passed.

I passed.

I fucking passed the tests.

Which meant that there was only a formality left before I could start there. I was more chocked than happy, I breathed heavily and laughed a little every now and then. I informed a few people that I managed it, the ones that I cared about. The other ones would hear sooner or later, but it didn't feel that important for me. I felt like screaming, and telling the world that I was back. I got up on nine, and had a chance again. We got out of school early, and I was almost levitating: I also messaged that friend of mine, the one that for so many lonely moments had felt like my only friend in the world. And I got a happy answer back from her. I smiled, and thought that words, these simple words of man cannot describe you my friend. You saved me.

I didn't cry. I was flying.

On the Monday I got the definite answer: You're in. After getting to know that, I did scream. The remainder of the day was spent with cleaning out my locker, and saying goodbye to what had been my world for the last months, and also in one way what had been my home for seven years.

The next day I all of a sudden stood there, after getting of the bus. On a square in a city that I had only visited two times before, and only had a vague idea where I was going. By a pure wonder I found my way to the school, and a few minutes later the coordinator introduced me to the class. And then she left, and there I was. I sat down in the back of the classroom, watched the faces of people talking to eachother, trying to figure out how they were as persons. During the lesson one guy that happened to walk past introduced himself, but other than that, I didn't really speak to anyone during the lesson.

When the first lesson was over, my first lesson in my new town and on my new school, in this new world of mine, I intended to just follow the crowd to the next classroom and don't really make it such a big deal that I existed. Then, when I had packed down the things in my back and turned towards the door, there stood a few girls in front of me, looking at me smiling.
Unknown girls in choir: Do YOU like cheese?

I of course didn't understand a thing, but they were laughing so I tried with a smile. I walked to the other classroom talking to two girls, that informed me that we were about to have a test in Swedish for the next lesson. When I said that well, no chance for me to participate in that since I haven't studied, they just laughed and said that nearly noone had studied more than on the maths lesson. I smiled once again, and kept walking.

The rest of the day is one big blur of faces and impressions and thoughts. This was really an all different world.

The day after I started we had a D-day, as in "disponibel dag", which meant that we were free. I spent a day of reflecting upon my new situation, trying not to be too hopeful and thereby maybe get very disappointed. The higher you climb, the harder the fall as you know.

The week after I had however started to hang out with some persons, six to the number and with me seven. One day downtown, and one movienight and all of a sudden I had been more social than during two moths at ÖP.

My life kept on in the same way, I actually learnt things in school and people got me into the class so fast that I was amazed. Not even tests got my mood down, and more and more time outside of school was spent with people. One movienight a week, at least, and the way I really noticed the change: People actually contacted me, without me contacting them first for the day. I didn't have to hunt a person through the whole town to have someone to hang out with. It was a totally new experience for me, to have friends.

And so the time kept on going, and we entered December. I had now been to the school for a while, and was feeling at least somewhat as home in this new town of mine. Every casual day I went up at 5:30 in the morning, to get breakfast and get ready. This followed with a 75 minute busride into town. It felt worth it, I felt that it counted. In difference for the mornings at the last school, when I sometimes just wanted to stay in bed with the tears close and wondering were my life went and where the rest of it was going. I felt motivated, I was happy.

After a december with movie nights, café visits and a for my part totally ruined economy, we gathered at a friends place ar New Years Eve to celebrate the end of the old year and the beginning of a new. We had now for some reason started to call our little society of seven people the Tentacles. The story behind that is long and entertaining, and won't be told by a humble blogger. We called ourselves that however, the seven tentacles. Two boys, and five gals.

Sometime in the afternoon we, the guys where kicked out to do some shopping while the girls were going to change. We had time to get to the store, state that it was closed, go to another store instead, get home, make chocolate pudding, talking a little to the girls on the phone, watching half of Rain Man and the Danish queen's New Years Eve speech before they were finished. They hid, we went upstairs to change, and a little while later we met them downstairs. They were beautiful, all of them, as angels sent from heaven to please a dying man's eyes in his last moment. And then, the celebrations began. We ate good food, talked, laughed, and an hour before midnight we got out to watch fireworks and light our own.

Sadly, some angry weather-god had placed a whole lot of clouds over the town for this evening, and thereby we couldn't see the presumed inferno over the rest of the town. We watched our own, and the ones from the surrounding blocks, and that felt enough in one way. When the clock closed on to midnight, we held up our glasses and counted down.
Five, four, three, two, one...
Happy New Year.

The last phrase was then repeated multiple times with escalating power and happiness. A new year was here.

Since everyone sadly couldn't stay the night, we were six left. For the celebrations we had been eight people, since one of the girls brought her boyfriend which in one way also is a part of the tentacles. More a remote one though, but still a part.

As stated, we were six left. We spent the night with watching two movies, and no meaningless Hollywood-movies with an embarassing attempt to comedic undertone, but two quite sad movies. Two movies that were, and are, incredibly good though.

When the second movie was finished and we figured that we wouldn't stay awake through another one. We also figured that we didn't have energy nor will to go upstairs, we would stay in front of the TV. So we slept three persons in a couch, me one of them, one person slept in a chair and the remaining two on a matress on the floor.

We were all tired, and one by one we fell asleep. We talked for quite a while though, me leaning on the girl beside me. She was more tired than me though, and thereby she soon leaned more on me than me on her.

Averagely one hour after we finished the last movie everyone was more or less asleep. The girls next to me was sleeping with her head on my chest, right by my heart. And me with my arms around her, and my hand holding hers. It started getting light outside, the sun was trying to penetrate the blanket of clouds. I raised my head a little, and stroked her hair. I thought about all that I'd experienced the year of 2006, and where it had taken me. I looked down on her face. I squeezed her hand a little harder.I watched the people sleeping around me. I once again looked at the sun, or the place where I assumed that it were. I felt happy, once again.

I cried. And I smiled.

13 kommentar(er).:

Ems said...

Naw this made me teary. It is really hard reading something like this about someone you really care about. It did have a happy ending though :) I am just so glad that you joined us at Katedralskolan and that you are one of the tentacles. You do make such a difference. And this text made me fully crasp how important us tentacles are to you. Which makes me both glad and honoured.
Do know i am always there for you. and i always will be.

David said...

Yeah, I can only agree. The first part of last year wasn't that great for me either...
The first term in our class has been great, and probably one of the best parts of my life this far.
The seven of us have really become very good friends in just a few short months.
All I can say is that we are very glad to have our own (british) Snuggles with us here in PDP =D

Alex said...

That was really beautiful Snugglie! Very personal and very well written. And I'm really happy you're in PDP with us, I mean, we definitely need our seventh tentacle =D You're a great guy.
It's like we're all becoming addicted to each other, cause we mean so much to each other as friends, and that feels really great. Rare.
There couldn't be better friends ;)

viktoria said...

aw i wanna cry now. :( i am really happy with the tentacles too..i had like no close friends at my old school for the past 2 years at all:( thankyou tenties (L) you sock rockers

emma said...

that was...amazing. it's so interesting how many of the tentacles have not had really close friends until this year, and now that we are together, it's hard to believe that we haven't known each other forever. even after we graduate, even though we may be continents away from each other, i know that we'll always be friends. it's also amazing how cheesy we can be sometimes. it's great that we can both be completely weird and insane with each other but we can also be serious. i löööv you guys so much!

Alex said...

I löööv you guys too. I think we've had somewhat similar experiences all of us, partly because we're very similar people. It's always so much fun to be with you guys, and I'm amazed every day by how people actually care. There's always someone to talk to =)
Now, I'm getting very corny, but really, I love you guys and you'll always be in my heart and my prayers.

isabella said...

I’m glad your year ended well anyway; you at least deserved that much.
Yeah, it seems like many had a bad year before, sadly enough. However the future is bright so it’s all been for the greater good, or something.
I miss you all (apparently tentacles) a lot, I haven’t met any of you since the end of term. But I’m eating real food tomorrow(!!), after nearly three weeks of suffering while stuffing myself full of Christmas food.
And now I only have to compliment Snugglie for writing so awesome, no really it’s really, really good/fantastic. It felt like it came straight for the heart and it’s real talent to be able to write stuff like that.
Again, I miss you everyone and it will be lovely to see you again tomorrow.

mengan said...

Beautiful and touching as usual ^^ All these comments here are very touching also. It's truly amazing how fast we've become friends and feel comfortable with each other. I haven't experienced that very much before. I löv you guys ^^

Snuggles said...

These comments will warm that heart of mine during many cold late-winter nights with the snow and the wind howling outside.

And above all, before I'd happen to get the more sentimental, a grand ol' CHEERS for you comments in the first place! One's work can never improve without criticism.

I can write for hours, but the evil conspiracy of blogspot.com stops me from doing that. Thereby I would just want to state for yet another time that I am happy that I actually made that call, and in the end alone got on that bus that took me to a town far away, to a future that I could not predict.

As stated before here in the comments (jeez, now I really am writing something all too long), there could not be better friends, and I love you. You light my day up.

Alex said...

We've missed you too Isabella! no, I won't use the comments as a massaging service anymore, I just wanted to say that and say that I love you guys too =)

Viktoria said...

aww isabella:) i was happy to see you again today:)

Din irriterande broder said...

Dude... even I, as a simple Västervångare, got touched by this! I mean, this ending made me feel kinda like the end of the sixth Harry Potter book, when Dumbledoor died. Awesome writing!
(Oh, btw... I'm on a quest to read your entire archive. Started like, yesterday)

the sister that ain't 8 anymore said...

Must agree with "din irriterande bror". Must also add what an enjoyment it is to read through the life you, dear brother, had when you were in golden days of 2006 -> . Very entertaining actually. I shall continue this story of socialness and loosing money to buy fika on the bus each morning til' I've, as the other brother, read through the archive.


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