Contrary to what usually happens right after you are declared professional, my life took another direction. My grandmother passed away, just a few days after our convocation and around the same time, the guy who i thought i might get married to, broke things off and went MIA. All those questions that usually go through your head, why, how, the statements that reverberate in silence, he couldnt have, i cant live without him; they all happened. i wish i could say there was something i did, or something that happened which was not superbly cliched, something that showed some semblance of a strong gloria gaynor woman, but no i was the cliche. The usual humdrum break up pattern, the ordinary getting-over-him process, the very insipid why-me mentality. I was that and so much less.
That was the year that i discovered just how amazing my family and friends were. They knew what i was going through and never once did they question me or berate me. All they did was give me exactly what they thought i needed, friends taking turns to come over to take me out or just sit with me, letting me wallow for hours, often treading softly around me and when needed giving me those words of comfort i so sorely needed, and then sending me on a trip to london to “recover”. I spent 4 and a half months away. Slowly i let go of the urgent desire to weep. I emerged scarred but finally a woman who could do gloria proud.
It was not the easiest year for me, but it was definitely one of the most revealing. I saw myself be someone who i decided i would never be again. (that came back and bit me though) I felt emotionally depleted but i think the most essential discovery i made about myself was that no matter what happened, i would make it through and i would still retain my optimism. It could have gone another way. I could have emerged scarred and bitter, promising never to trust a man again, carrying hate-filled baggage around as a medal of honour, but thankfully that didnt happen. I learned that i had a power, the power to be as strong and as positive as i chose to be, and i chose it.
Though that new enthusiastic graduate fever escaped me, in retrospect it saved me from jumping headlong into a career choice i would have regretted. By the time i was ready to start working, all advertising agencies were sufficiently fulfilled with their share of newbies and a fresh crop was waiting to launch itself into the glamourous ad world. I ended the year on a quiet but strangely calm note.