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Ben Leander Willgruber, MSc.
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Pros and Cons of the – possibly – Worst Year of my Life

If you’ve been reading my blog for a while, you’ll know that this year was tricky. But to be honest, calling it the ‘worst year’ of my life may be a slight clickbait. Some really bad things have happened this past year, but there were just as many great experiences I am very thankful for. So, I’ve decided to write a Pros and Cons list to find out how bad it’s really been.

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Cons

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  • Earlier this year I’ve been diagnosed with Diabetes Type I.
  • As a consequence of having late-onset Diabetes, I was sick more than two months of 2018. I also had to take 5 rounds of antibiotics.
  • My new tattoo, which I love very much, became inflamed and will have to be touched up in autumn.

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  • On July 20th of last year my favorite singer and youth idol, Chester Bennington, committed suicide.
  • I haven’t sold many of my t-shirts making me debate if it’s even worth the hustle.
  • I still have no clue of what I actually wanna do with my life.

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Pros

  • I’ve finished my studies in psychology last year.
  • I’ve made more progress in battling my anxieties (aka OCD) than the last five years combined.
  • I’ve rekindled my passion for Yoga, swimming and climbing – things I couldn’t do because of my OCD.
  • I’m starting to feel like myself again.
  • I traveled to Thailand, Cambodia and Vietnam and had some amazing experiences.

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  • I was able to lose a lot of weight and shape up.
  • I started freelancing for the Austrian magazine VICE (new article due next week!).
  • I’ve contributed an illustration to one of my favorite publications, the new ‘Gay Men Draw Vaginas – the Coloring Book’ (out in early August!).
  • I’ve fallen in and out of love again (but I will mostly remember the good parts).
  • I’ve met some truly amazing people. I have the feeling that I have finally found friends I feel comfortable enough to be myself around. I think they are here to stay.

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  • Together we had an amazing ski-holiday in Carinthia I will remember dearly.
  • Besides new people, I am also very glad about having some friends I’ve known for a very long time still in my life.

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  • With these lovely people, I had the best possible birthday celebration. It was everything I could have ever wished for. I even got a rainbow cake and a jar of wishes for next year. I’ve never felt more loved.
  • I’ve received some amazing feedback for this blog, both offline and online. From my heart, thank you, to everyone who takes the time to stop by and read my ramblings.
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Even if you don’t believe me, I promise we weren’t stoned.

In the end, I don’t know if this was the ‘worst’ year of my life or not. At least I wasn’t bullied, so I guess it was better than most of the time I spend at school. I’ll probably call it a year of extremes. And you know what: I’ve wished for life not to be boring and that’s exactly what I got.

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Ben

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Btw if you wanna check out my summer collection of shirts – now is the time 😉

Compulsive nonconformist who left the 9-to-5 world after studying psychology and has since then devoted himself to design and writing on a freelance basis. Has at least four different kinds of chips at home at any given time.

Comments

  • Avatar
    17. July 2018
    reply

    First of all, Happy Belated Birthday!
    Second of all, your tattoo looks amazing (the colors are so vivid).
    Third of all, while I was reading the cons, I felt bad for you, but then I started on the pros and I was like: “Do these ever end? There is so many of them. How can be calling it “the worst year”? So yea, I bet from further and further perspective, that year won’t seem so bad pretty soon.
    Fourthly, I’m not sure if it’s because I don’t see too many responses to responses to responses of comments, but your comment section seems alright now (no more comments off to the side, etc.

  • Avatar
    13. July 2018
    reply

    Any year that has some pros mixed in with the cons can’t be your worst year. I think that’s a more normal year than you realize right now. I hope you will take this the right when when I say I hope this is the worst year you’ll ever have.

    Keep on keeping on, buddy!

  • Avatar
    13. July 2018
    reply

    My older brother is a T1D and was diagnosed nearly 11 years ago. While I’ve only been an observer of his journey, I do know that although the beginning is rough, things will get much better. Not that that negates how much it sucks currently. I hope things become easier soon!

  • Avatar
    13. July 2018
    reply

    A very eventful year, just from reading here. Be happy for that because it means that you’re still alive! Naked hugs!

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