Ruminations

I’m Miss Brightside… NOT.

“You’re never fully dressed without a smile.”
I think it was redheaded Annie who said that. Does anyone else beg to differ, or am I the only cynic here?
Optimism. Those eight letters have been the inspiration for thousands of quotes and sayings. Look at the glass as half-full, not half-empty. Keep your face to the sunshine, and you cannot see the shadow. When life gives you lemons, make lemonade.
The funny thing is, I used to believe in all that, until I woke up one day and realized that it was crap.

When I was in my sophomore year of high school, I read in Candy that you should always start the day with a smile. So there I was, walking to school with a spring in my step, confident that it was going to be a good day.
What did I get later that day? A huge fight with my friends. I ended up crying my eyes out.
If you’re thinking, Well, it was just one day, you should know that I tried it several times more. Every single day that I started with a smile ended up total disasters. Seriously.
Don’t believe me? On a day I tried that optimism shit again, a friend called me fat, right to my face. She repeated it several more times before I went home and started fasting.

I tried it again, and I lost my wallet full of cash which was supposed to be for Christmas gifts.
I tried it again, and I nearly got ran over by a jeepney.

Basically, every time I tried to be optimistic, it bit me in the ass.

When my friends turn to me when they have problems, I don’t know what to tell them. I feel like a hypocrite when I say, “It’s gonna be okay. It’ll will work out. Just keep smiling.” How can I say that when I myself don’t believe it? They feel like empty words. I tell people to look at the silver lining when I myself don’t see the damn thing. *sigh* The downside of being a pessimist.

Anyway… There’s a much less superficial reason why I am an optimist-turned-pessimist.

Disappointment has always been a recurring theme in my life.

Starting my day with a bright outlook means expecting good things to come. Having expectations means I would be setting myself up to be utterly disappointed when things go wrong. I don’t need more disappointment in my life, thank you very much. I get more than my fair share.

I therefore conclude (god, I sound like Kat) that pessimism is good. If you’re a pessimist, you’ll either be always right or pleasantly proven wrong. In closing, may I point out the irony that I use the monicker Miss Brightside, when my outlook on life is anything but bright.

Ela is a twentysomething who is constantly getting stuck in self-destructive behavior and bouts of low self-esteem. She struggles with depression and writes to relieve herself of her feelings. Sometimes she even blogs about other things like makeup and positivity. One of her pieces was published in the Inquirer Young Blood in October 2017. She likes cats, dogs, and sometimes even people.

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