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The Daily Eastern News

Column: Hard season for relationships, fish

Abby Carlin, Copy Editor

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Fall snuggles and late night bonfire season has passed, Christmas lights and holiday movie marathons have come and gone, New Years kisses have dissipated and Valentine’s flowers rotting in the garbage and chocolates are sitting comfortably right above where your favorite pants rest. This time of year is the cold and inconsistent midterm mess that sits in the gap between the endearing part of winter and the promise of spring, when the skies are gray and all of your dreams and relationships and friendships casually catch on fire and burn before your very eyes.

It seems that the lovely (yet terrifying) week of beautiful weather has left us disillusioned and naïve, for some of us are under the impression that this semester is still going as great as we wanted it to, that our friendships are in harmony and that love is still in the air. Well, it is not. Your classes are not as easy as you had hoped, you are alone and your time management skills have not improved. For me, this realization came in the form of three healthy fish, suddenly floating in shreds of their formal glory atop a freshly cleaned tank.

2017 is a mess. Or perhaps the first three months of any year just seem to disappoint. Beginning with all the Halloween hype mid-October, the tail end of every year seems to be filled with sentiment and later build in excitement and promise for what is to come. Additionally, our culture seems to be fixated on the notion that one can casually make huge changes in their lives and the transition into the New Year will be smooth and perfect and everything will be great. As I have stated in my previous columns, it is not always like that.

2017 has been a time of testing my personal patience in a number of ways, not the least of which includes the horribly mutilated corpses of my guppies. I bought these fish right at the beginning of the semester with the idea that, if I take care of, clean up after and love these fish, they will continue to grow and flourish in their clean, beautiful (expensive) fish tank.

Well, they did not. Actually, they did the opposite. They contracted a really gross fish disease called “Ick,” and despite my efforts to save them, they decided to get into a three-way fight. I have no idea what they were fighting about, but clearly it was something of great personal importance for this fight to end in death.

I guess this just goes to show that sometimes life just goes wrong, and that does not include the weight of our own personal burdens and faults. I did everything for my fish, and even without the hindrance of my own personal flaws, everything ended in an ugly and puke-worthy fashion. So, take a breath. Let life crash and burn sometimes, but pick up the pieces and try again. I fully intend, as frustrated as I am, on cleaning that tank (again) and getting some new fish, even though it went so horribly the last time. I will not let a freak of nature (or rather, three brightly colored freaks) ruin my fun as a fish-Mom. I will just have to read up on fish discipline and wait to see what huge cosmic joke comes next.

 

Abby Carlin is a sophomore English language arts major. She can be reached at 581-2812 or alcarlin@eiu.edu.  

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The student news site of Eastern Illinois University in Charleston, Illinois.
Column: Hard season for relationships, fish