Once every three weeks or so, I revaluate my life on the back of a TTC bus. This is usually a day where I might have received a letter of rejection for my dream summer program, or perhaps a day where I lost my wallet, or perhaps even something as mundane as bombing a math test. Whatever it was, this day would be like the one where Ferdinand got shot; a series of downward spiralling events setting off a cataclysmic catastrophe.
Whenever I have one of these Ferdinand days, I’m miserable. Everyone seems better than me, sure. I won’t be accepted for any scholarships… of course (assuming I get accepted into a university at all). My parents won’t be happy, either. When they see my report card they yell and act like I just spat in their faces. Next up, my cell phone, iPod and Scientific American magazines are confiscated and I am forced to seek tutors. All that is bearable, but the worst part is the feeling of inadequacy. No one can help me, because I am just not meant to do anything well.
When I finally get to sit down and think though, I come to the conclusion that there is no explanation for my inadequacy. Everything I try, no matter how hard, seems to fail; even though other people can breeze through the same task.
Inexplicably however, the next day I wake up feeling great. Like the jobs created in a wartime economy, these lessons would be the silver lining on this cloud of gloom. I recall the existence of that unacceptable test score but I won’t remember why something so insignificant and easily repairable warranted such an acrimonious response. I failed, but it won’t drag me down; I can learn from it.
Melancholy can make you quite stubborn. If you have a bad day, stay calm and carry on. You’ll see through it soon. These Ferdinand days, I no longer dread.