I apologise at once for this rambling daylog, full of disjointed anecdotes. I'm writing because I've had one of those odd days in which I want to cry, but don't know why - like those barmy summer days or a truly jolly Christmas, and inspite of the mood all you want to do is sit down and weep. I feel a bit like that.

I'm beginning to suspect that life is not really poetic after all, or at least not in the way I thought or hoped. The good are not always rewarded; the bad are not always punished; the reader does not always get the happy ending or even a resolution.

I always thought of my life as a narrative, my narrative, which I bumbled through, but that ultimately I would reach the ending I thought I deserved. But I was wrong. Life is more than just my narrative, it's made up of billions of narratives - all competing against each other, no one of more value than another. One man's rejection is another's romantic reunion.

Life seems pointless, but I'm only looking for my purpose - selfishly searching for my heroic lead. Perhaps I'll only find it when I realise that I'm just an extra, an extra in everyone else's story - and they in mine. I've made a mistake, believing in a life of romantic pathways and valiant deeds. I've wasted time waiting for somebody or something to come along and slap me in the face with the answers to all my questions. I believed in a 'true love' that would burst into the room and introduce itself to me and thought that in the mean time I could quietly sit back and observe, waiting for my uninvited guest.

I don't want to wait anymore, sitting on the bench as everyone else gets up to dance. But neither do I feel comfortable passing along a line, in the hope that eventually I'll find something I like. Maybe this is because I'm just scared. I know that I hold all of these grandiose ideals and yet I'm far too frightened to experience them myself. Somehow the potential hurt and risk denies the possible happiness. So I just sit back and imagine, but a life without a human touch is no reality at all.

Paradoxically, I've never been as happy nor as sad as I am right now. Having just started university I feel that my life is split in two and that I can't join the halves, like a jigsaw puzzle in which the holes are the wrong shapes for the pieces. I no longer feel like I have a true home, or even a family. I'm rejoicing in breaking out into a new world, with some wonderful people by my side - but I feel like an emotional cripple, one who knows the answer to his problem but fails to show his working.

One of my best friends cooked dinner for a group of us last night as a birthday present to me. As we tried to lay the table I became increasingly angry with my father who had no idea whether my mother had taken the place mats or some of the wine glasses when she had left. I was really angry that I had to think about it, and re-live her going. The months in which rooms of the house were bare except for a couple of chairs - a daily reminder that she was no longer with us.

Just before we all sat down to supper, one of my friends, Claude, passed me on the way to the bathroom and told me that he'd found something sad in there. He pointed above the towel rail, where name labels had been stuck to the wall by my mother, above each of our towels. They read: 'Miles', 'Elizabeth' and 'Michael'. I was still annoyed that as the younger Elizabeth's sticker had come before mine. Between 'Miles' and 'Elizabeth' was a half torn sticker which had read 'Jane'. Claude pointed at each of them, and then the gap: 'That's sad.' I kind of snorted and agreed. Somehow the fact that somebody else had noticed something that quietly made me wince each day made it seem all the more real

My father is talking about selling the house now. I feel much happier at university, with my friends, but I'm still scared at the thought of not having a 'home', a castle or an island where I can safely retreat and hide.

This is all part of growing up, only I just don't feel very grown-up. I'm still clinging to a childhood I had knocked out of me long ago, afraid to grab my own story and begin the telling of it. I know that I must be braver, and perhaps less idealistic and perfectionist. I'm young and should be having fun, not chasing a romantic dream. Only I don't know how to stop and it's much easier to keep running.