Some thoughts about the last semester and human relationships
To be honest, I hesitated to upload this post. I had to leave it for a while, but in the end I decided to upload it, otherwise you wouldn’t be able to read it right at this moment.
So it turned out that I in fact did not post as much as I said I wanted to. However, now that the first semester is over, I feel like writing about my thoughts again, since I do not really talk about those in my videos.
I experienced a lot during the past few months and there are a few things I want to do differently next semester. First of all, I want to take international courses in which I don’t have to put too much effort into. I chose two international courses based on my interests this semester. One was an art workshop course that I enjoyed a lot, even though it always started at 6 p.m. and I would always come home really late. The other course, well, I didn’t enjoy so much. I was interested in the contents that were included in the course, but there was a group project for which you had to conduct field work together with your group members and you had to prepare a presentation for your subject. In the end you had to have a final product to present during the class exhibition. Even though the subjects we talked about were very interesting, all in all, it was nothing but stress for me, so that I even got ill because of it and I don’t want to repeat that next semester. However, I got to edit a video as a final product, which I on one hand enjoyed of course, since it has become a hobby, on the other hand I had to pull an all-nighter a day before the exhibition to add subtitles to the videos,which was not that fun, because, just let me be honest here, adding subtitles is a pain in the butt and I had to do that for an entire video. I mean, I am proud of the finished product, but the months before were really stressful.
After this year, I would like to be able to speak about my experiences, about memories I made, about the places I went to with the people I met here, not about the stress caused by some university projects.
I have met several people here, most of them international students like me. I am especially on good terms with one person from Switzerland and I have spent many weekends discovering new places with her and she is a very good partner to shop with, so I am very happy that I met her. I also meet up with some German friends who are studying in other cities every now and then. In the beginning I had hoped to meet some Japanese people, maybe even make some friends, but I have given up on that by now to be honest. It is already difficult for me to get to know new people in general,because it’s really hard for me to approach people. I usually don’t speak to people if they don’t talk to me first, because I wouldn’t want to initiate a conversation to discover that we don’t have anything to talk about. Of course I know that you won’t know whether you have something in common with someone or not if you don’t speak to them. Maybe I am too spoilt by the group of friends I have back in Düsseldorf. I probably met them the very first day and even now, we are still friends.
It exhausts me if the conversation doesn’t go beyond smalltalk, so most of the time I try to avoid that to the point where I even ignore people or become really rude so that they distance themselves from me. I know that this is not a kind thing to do, but I would prefer them finding someone who enjoys listening to them rather than speaking to someone like me who doesn’t really have anything to say to them. I don’t know whether you understand where I am going with this, but what I want to say is that I would like to talk to people and feel contented and satisfied after speaking to them, not exhausted. I can do so with my friend from Switzerland, but we never meet in university and I don’t really feel connected to any other person here, so I spend most of my breaks alone. Reading this again, I seem really whiny and needy and I am sorry about that, but my blog is a place where I can write down every thought and express every feeling freely. I need someone with whom I can have deep and meaningful conversations. As you can see, I am very picky when it comes to people I want to hang out with and on top of that I also have troubles approaching people. That is indeed not a good combination of characteristics. So I feel like I don’t have the right to feel lonely, because I have brought everything upon myself. Yet, I do feel lonely, sometimes more,sometimes less. I just can’t deny those feelings.
If an opportunity to meet new people presents itself, I consider it for a few minutes until anxiety makes its way through my brain, which then comes up with possible uncomfortable scenarios and then staying at home alone in front of my computer seems much more appealing.
The dormitory I live in is for international students only, so I don’t meet any Japanese people there.
International students are separated from native students at my university, means that we don’t really have classes together. A few Japanese students might choose some international courses, but there aren’t many of them, so there aren’t a lot of opportunities to meet Japanese people in class and even if you do, it doesn’t mean that you will become friends with them. The people you meet here, they all have had their own lives, their own group of friends, before meeting you. I find it difficult to find a place in an already existing group of people, who share many memories and experiences together. You will be here for only one year and you are just one international student of many they will encounter during this one year. I don’t want to feel like the fifth wheel on the wagon and that is why I end up alone. I would rather feel lonely by myself than in a group of people.
Despite all of this, I am considering entering a student circle at my university next semester. I plan to choose international courses with less workload to have more time to try to be sociable. I am interested in an art circle, so I hope that I will be able to connect to other people that way. I will try to make the best out of the last few months in Japan, since you don’t always get the chance to study here.
Since I don’t have lectures right now, I have time to recharge for the next semester. My friend is coming to Japan at the end of February and we plan to travel a lot, so I really look forward to making a lot of memories with her.