Naruto lives his life the way he knows best.
He will adjust the Konoha headband confidently, and stare in the mirror with a bright smile.
I will get through this week.
HÂÂÂÂÂe tells himself this every Monday, and he will keep to his words. It is his ninja way.
Additionally, he does not need to eat Ramen, and he does not need to whine, sulk or moan about anything. He is happy, and he can look forward to completing missions and improving his skills. He can do anything on Mondays because he feels fine - and even better when Sasuke and Sakura arrive at the bridge, appearance ruffled and with dark bags under their eyes.
Yes, Monday is a good day.
On Tuesday, Naruto feels less alive.
The excitement and buzz that Mondays contain is curiously absent, and Tuesday just seems /dull/.
But he is still happy, and Naruto finally begins to train sincerely; drinking milk to improve his height, and practicing his chakra control on water. It will not do to get out of shape; he cannot let Sasuke beat him, and his determination will help him to complete most of his missions.
But sometimes, that determination can become a distraction, instead of an incentive.
You could interpret it as pressure.
Naruto does not feel as good as Monday on Tuesday.
Wednesday can be even worse.
Of course, Naruto will have failed some missions by now. His rivalry with Sasuke will cause him to make mistakes, and the team will suffer because of his mistakes. This is what Sakura yells at him, whilst Sasuke mutters 'idiot' under his breath. Nonetheless, Kakashi does not comment, and just sometimes, Naruto begins to believe it himself.
...And so he trains.
Naruto trains until midnight, until he cannot move; until he collapses with the strain. He can drown himself in the aspiration to become higher, better and to be more acknowledged than any other Hokage /ever/.
It is on Wednesdays which he goes to the Ramen stand, where he eats Ramen until he can eat no more. Only then, is he content.
Thursdays is when Sasuke starts to become annoying.
By now, Naruto is tiring, and the missions, the training; the rivalry is getting to him. Sasuke observes Naruto, and the Uchiha immediately notices the slight opening of defences and the drooping of expression; he exploits these weaknesses, a day where he can extract revenge for all the annoyance that Naruto has caused.
Why are you such an idiot?
Now, the words seem to be a common occurrence.
And not surprisingly, the insults begin.
But Naruto is too tired to care, and his smiles are cracking. It is an effort to laugh, and yet, he is sick of crying. Stuck somewhere in the middle, Naruto does not know what to do. Earlier on the week, maybe he would fume and try to punch his adversary. But now, he is too drained to care.
He will visit the Ramen stands on Thursday.
Friday is pity day.
Naruto cannot help but remember everything that has happened during the week; sometimes bad, sometimes normal, but never good. He thinks about the way he has dealt with things, and he is oddly realistic about his problems.
There is time to think.
Usually, there are no missions on Friday, but he does not welcome the break. Rest lets him think, and thinking leads to self pity. He would rather have missions on a Friday and not complete them at all, than actually facing up to his own doubts. A future Hokage should be strong in all aspects, especially when facing up to fears.
But Naruto can't help it, and when his thoughts overwhelm him, he tries to train, or he plays with Konohamaru until he can no longer fix the smile on his face.
By Friday, Ramen does not work anymore.
Saturday, Naruto sleeps.
He rests, and he rebuilds his energy for Sunday. He needs this energy, and he does not even eat; he can't afford the distraction.
He needs strength, strength that will help him become real again, believable again.
Sleep takes away all of Naruto's problems; it takes him to another world of no worries. There, he doesn't have to think.
Nightmares are rare.
And not surprisingly, Saturday is Naruto's favourite day of the week.
Sunday is Naruto's day of assurance.
Saturday has done its job, and Naruto is back to normal again. He can smile freely - without the usual bitterness, but he chooses not to. Then he'll have extra strength for Monday, where the cycle starts all over again.
Before he goes to sleep, he will stare into the mirror again, mouthing the words he repeats every Monday, peering at his reflection carefully.
There will be no cracks. He says, determinedly.
Then he falls asleep, waiting for Monday to come.
After all, a true ninja never takes back his words.