summer pressure


Summer. It used to mean peace, fun and rest. As a child, it meant that I could spend the whole day playing, not caring about anything else. Even if I never went on adventurous vacations with my family, even if I never had crazy memories to tell my friends once school started again, I didn’t care; because going to the playground, watching tv and playing with my crayons were enough. When I was young, summer days had no end, time was diluted, and ice cream was all I needed to cure the boredom of a child who dreamed too much.


Summer means something different now. It started last year. One hot morning I woke up, sleep still in my eyes, a whole summer day facing me: I started panicking; the lack of plans for the day was enough to send me spiralling, my mind swimming in a feeling I couldn’t really understand. Something new was happening, a fear I had never met before, bubbling inside my head, slowly paralyzing me.


I tried to ignore my new acquaintance, for some reason though, I couldn’t stop obsessing over the fact that I had nothing to do, I felt so empty. My body soon followed my thoughts, I started feeling nauseous and dizzy, a weight on my chest pushing me down: the feeling now had a physical form. It was growing on me, in me.


- the crippling guilt of not doing enough, paralyses me from doing something -

- 何もすることがないという罪悪感が私を麻痺させる -

Last summer went on. Because time goes by, perfectly unmoved, forcing the cuts to heal and the scars to lighten. I spent my days trying to locate the wound, to find out what was hurting me. Nevertheless, the only thing I could think about was my uneasiness. Drained of all my energies, I was feeling so shallow that nothing could make me feel good, better. I was stuck in my head, with my self-destructive thoughts. No matter how much I tried to distract myself and live in the moment, I was fearing the future. I couldn’t focus on the present, because I was too busy preoccupying for what would come next, or better, wouldn’t.


- it was illogical, I couldn’t help but making sense of it -

- 非倫理的なのに、私は意味がなすように考えることをやめられなかった -

The discomfort soon invaded every aspect of my life. The things that made me happy before, suddenly didn’t anymore. I started feeling guilty when I hanged out with my friends, I was so distracted by my anxiety, I couldn’t enjoy the time spent together. I started avoiding social interactions, fearing that people would notice my struggle and see through me, the fear that was eating me alive. It didn’t help, it made my distress flourish, things I had never considered scary before, unexpectedly became obstacles to my well-being. When my friends started asking me questions, noticing my strange behaviour, I convinced myself that I wasn’t a good friend, indeed I was a horrible one. I became obsessed by the idea that everyone was secretly hating me, persuading myself that I would never be enough, I wasn’t enough for myself anyways.


- I kindly rejected the idea of loving myself -

- 自分を愛することを否定しちゃった -

Every time I scrolled through social media, I was mocked by images foreign to me. Screen reflecting the perpetuated idea that, as a young person, I must enjoy the best years of my life, that I shouldn’t waste time worrying, rather living my youth at its fullest. As I compared my discomfort to other people’s happiness, I convinced myself that I was flawed: I wasn’t capable of being happy. I started believing that I was never going to feel better, to feel peaceful again, that I would never overcome my demons. I began wondering how I lived before I started fearing being awake. Before the daydreams turned into nightmares, before I became my own enemy, before the enemy started tearing myself from the inside.