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My first proper post, there's a lot to say. I've called it 'the golden gate'. sorry its long



Apr 20, 2018
My first proper post, there's a lot to say. I've called it 'the golden gate'. sorry its long

Yet again, I’m up too late, nostalgic, reminiscing and fathoming where it all went so wrong. I’ve tried to get it down on paper but every night I relapse into a shameful state or just start over. I don’t like to think I’m hard done by – I have pretty good health and a loving family, and I think that why it’s taken so long to admit I’ve been pretty unhappy. In lots of ways I’ve had it all, so it’s shameful to confess. Truthfully, I’ll say I’m my own worst enemy half the time and don’t help myself, but I think that’s because it was only me who let me down, no one else.

Life has just been a downward spiral since leaving the States in 2016, after only completing 5 months of my soccer scholarship that I’d worked for all my life. Even though I’m over that now, the damage it caused in response to that is still very much taking its toll. I’ve partied too hard and looked after myself too little. I can never look at a football the same. Over it? I beg to differ. I've recently been diagnosed with mood dysregulation disorder and percribed with anti psychotics and depressants. I've never felt so incapable of getting myself out of a downer like this. The last knock was a recent boyfriend who left me a few days after having to have an abortion after an unexpected pregnancy. More importantly, i'm too anxious to play football anymore. Everything has fallen apart.

For years I woke up every day with a dream in place, and I was set on reaching it. When it’s all over, you almost forget how life was without that dream. That’s what my problem was, from day one I had a plan, and It’s only now I realize I that whole time I WAS living a dream, because I was happy and had purpose. I don’t really know how to pin point how I feel these last few weeks: sometimes I’ve been at my happiest and others my most down. I always find true happiness in resilience, and through success following a huge knock back. But the last couple years, after some painful hits, the cycle of ‘bouncing back’ started to define me, and also exhaust me. The lows began to be problematic, and it took more than a good chat off mum to get me back on the road. The highs, they’re great, short-lived, but periods where I feel confident, productive and capable of accomplishing everything I set to. The slow realization, once I’ve peaked at euphoria, with little sleep and an over-flowing schedule, is the red flag, and the realty check telling me I’m not allowed to be this happy. It starts all over again. What made the fall harder was not having the love of football to dust me off. I’m now living in fear of jumping back into the cycle of being the best to the worst in a matter of weeks, it’s exhausting and takes more of me every time. There’s nothing wrong or lazy in living life at 80mph rather than 130, but it wasn’t a part of the plan. I’ve spent hours on end these few weeks just trying to make sense of things that have happened previous to America, and if it’s caused this hurt? But I don’t think it has. I loved football so much, using it as escapism to everything in life, even though I didn’t realise it. It made me strong enough to power through the things that happened back then, it gave me strength. I wish I had that strength now. But the thing that brought me such happiness, such security soon became the source of self-doubt, pain and failure.

So, what used to be your fulgurating passion becomes your inception of anxiety and depression. That wasn’t part of the plan. I’m relieved to have a part of me still telling me I can be the best player on the team. But I wake up every day foreboding another moment of breathlessness, panic and raciness with the ball at my feet forgetting how I always used to deal with it. I’m so fearful of feeling behind, unfit and like the girl who ‘didn’t quite make it’, that I’m missing the chance to still make it.

It’s like being left handed your whole life and all of a sudden you swap. Yeah, you can learn to write again, but isn’t it a burden knowing you already have the knowledge? I’ve had to try and live life with a different perspective and try and adjust to a lifestyle not requiring as much structure, because after all I needed a break, and maybe time to let loose. I’ve had some experiences, become educated in an events trade, gained some party friends but overall become very lost. I used to be applauded for a good pass now I feel it’s an achievement to get out of bed. The only thing that has gotten me up is a party that night to get intoxicated, sometimes do drugs and just feel for a few hours. Because nothing had ever made me feel the way football did after a good game.

All my life I just always saw myself as different, not in a weird way, I just had this view on life whereby it was all going to be sunshine, fortune and glory. I had the strength to dream, and make it a reality. I always wanted to be popular, successful and an inspiration from a young age, without losing myself that is. I was never cocky. I had this vision of the day I made my break, and that I was going to buy my mum a house in Greece. You're going to think I'm tapped but here it goes. In my head, I've always imagined a staircase, each year traveling up the steps towards total happiness. I imagined America being the top of the staircase - a golden gate to a fresh start of nothing but perfection. This delusion totally done me over ha-ha, but it got me there. It became more of a relevant concept in year 12 when I studied the 'Great Gatsby' - a total deluded dreamer if you didn't know. I admired his quote "My life has to go like this, it needs to keep going up" He implied the "the light on the edge of the dock" symbolized his dream in the distance which he was so close to be in reach with. He wanted too much and ended up getting shot and dying. The green light was now a light that was green, a bit like this golden gate I kept relating to. I’ve tried to find the relevance the past has on me now and the solution, but just by writing this I’ve realised the solution to happiness is in the now.

I’ve been knocked down a lot, had my vision of dreams turn opaque because of a minor knock, and been told I’m not good enough. If I want something enough, I’ll find a way even if it’s the 77th path of trying. Even when to stand back up when the deleterious feeling of failure is too colossal to bare, in the hollowness of my berated heart remains room for renascence and the rekindle of a little girl in a football kit who never gave up. Football will always be in my life, just right now these last few years of dreaming turned me upside down to where I don't feel I could 'bounce back'. I'm finally over America not working out even though I cried so much. I'm strong enough to admit I achieved a lot and I'm proud now. I do have a pair of balls lol. I missed the City and my car anyway, I made the right decision. It's ok that it didn't work out, it doesn't mean I'm a failure. I give myself more credit now. Sometimes for even getting out of the house. I have a lot going for me like university and work. I am going to bounce back again and find that fire I've always had, but now I've stopped chasing the extravagant highs that have given me a warped perception of life. I listen to my mum finally when she tells me, “Life is a journey not a destination".

Happiness won't ever be consistent wherever you go and that's life. However, that quote made me value how much happiness I found in the process, the happiest I've ever been. - the climb to the top, not the gate. I had an unexpected fall and this gate was a lie telling me that Limestone was the end of chasing dreams. Every step was a part of me making a dream happen and I'm finally proud of it. Now every day is about a never-ending stairway, not golden gate this time, I don't want it to end. I still dream and look ahead, but now I know I can look back and appreciate the journey. It was fun. I’m sorry to my family, that it’s taken me endless conversations and too many days in a heap in my bed to realize I wanted a better life than this. I suppose I forgot how to turn failure into a hurdle rather than a reason to stop trying. I feel everything’s clearer now and that I’ve let myself become weak, but I’m starting the gym today and I can’t wait. That little feeling of ignition in my chest is starting to enlighten me again, burn through the overcast and guide me to the blue skies of a fresh start.


Well-known member
Mar 13, 2018
Central Florida
Congratulations upon making the fresh start.

Starting over isn't easy. I know. I've done it multiple times, out of necessity. Sometimes because I've screwed-up, and sometimes because things happened beyond my control that weren't even remotely my fault nor my doing.

And I know what it's like having to life (metaphorically) at 80MPH, rather than 130. (Well, I used to literally drive 140, but that's beside the point, and that was in a performance car on back roads, decades ago, anyhow. I still miss going that fast. Reflexes aren't up to it, these days. Especially with the neurological issues since the neck rebuild. I'd be a danger to everyone on the road, at that speed, now.)

It's remarkable, though: There actually is life after the Big Dream Implosion. And it can actually be pretty enjoyable. You just might be amazed at what 80MPH can be like. Not so much pumping adrenaline, true. But...it has its own delights and its own rewards for the savoring.

Take care, eh? Wishing you well.
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