I feel as if I have embarked on a new era in my life but carried so much baggage from my past with me. I want to be more positive in my life; I no longer want to have the same negative attitudes that have pervaded my thoughts for the last couple of years. Yet, it seems so hard to do so. Lately, I am constantly reminded of how few friends I have. Of course, I have some friends, which I suppose is better than none. It is important for me to acknowledge the people in my life. But, as for how I truly feel, I don’t remember feeling more lonely.

I am into my studies in the sense that I am two weeks ahead of homework. But, if someone were to ask me if I had anything better to do with my life, I probably wouldn’t have an answer. The truth is the seven classes that I am taking this semester just serve as a distraction to how lonely I feel in my life. If I wanted to go to an event, I really don’t know if there’s anyone in my life I could ask. And this is not just another negative attitude in my life. I genuinely don’t know.

I remember, a few days ago, someone asked me if I was excited for Feb Club. That question caused me such profound sadness, and I could not articulate why for such a long time. Why am I so sad at such an innocuous question? I thought about it for quite a bit, and the conclusion I came up with is that the notion of Feb Club just reminds me of how little friends I have to go to events with. In a period of rest, I can distract myself by studying. If anything, being two weeks ahead of homework is proof of that. But, in this time period where I am supposed to be happy… I cannot help but to feel despair at how sad I am about it.

I am trying so hard to have a more positive outlook on life. I am trying so, so hard. I want to be happy. I also wanted to be happy freshman year, and it feels like the same issues are still haunting me. I didn’t feel like I made any friends freshman year, and I don’t feel as if I made any friends as of now.

In Chinese class, we had to ask our partners when we adjusted to Penn. I gave a PG response, of course. But, in terms of how I feel, I don’t think I’ve ever adjusted to Penn. This school never felt like a home to me. Homes are defined by a sense of belonging, which is produced by being with friends, and I don’t think I have ever felt that.

One of my friends once sent me an article titled, “The Opposite of Loneliness”. It was written by this undergraduate at Yale who said how she felt the opposite of loneliness at Yale, and how she was afraid of entering the real world where she had to leave this feeling of togetherness. I told her that I don’t think I’ve ever felt the opposite of loneliness, and she agreed. Despite being almost at the end of my senior year of college, my experiences never added to something I wanted, and it’s not because I developed any unreal expectations of college from consuming media. I just want to feel as if I belong here, and I don’t. If I’m being realistic, I don’t think I’ll ever feel that from now until graduation.

I wish things could be different. There’s this quote attributed to George Eliot that went something along the lines of: “It’s never too late to be what you might have been.” Right now, I feel so in touch with what I am not. I am working towards being “what [I] might have been” but the task is so Sisyphian. There is, of course, meaning in still attempting, but it’s just so numbing sometimes. I don’t know how else to put it. I wish things could change. I wish things could have been different. But this is now.