I’m living in that sweet spot in the middle of my 20’s – I’m old enough to have a Master’s degree and young enough to laugh at Spongebob. There’s such a pressure when you’re in your 20s to already know who you and how you identify yourself. But as we get older, this gets so much harder.
My 13 year-old-sister said the funniest thing about 2 years ago. She said that she’s known in her grade “for being the fastest typer and making the best double chin.” The hilarity of that combination aside, don’t you remember when it was that easy? In my grade in middle school, Kevin was the best basketball player. Katie rode horses. Molly was awesome at cool crafts. And that was it, it was that simple.
As we grow up, we identify ourselves in such different ways. When I meet someone I ask, “Where did you go to school? What do you do for a living?” And that becomes our identifier. Before I started this blog, I was talking with an acquaintance. He half-jokingly asked me, “So what do you like to do, like, in the world?” And I was truly horrified that I couldn’t think of a response. I do…my job? Phone calls? The Internet?? I realized that I had totally lost myself in the humdrum cycle of work, eat, sleep. And I remembered that it wasn’t always that way, not at all. I had a fire in me, a creativity unburdened by the plague of comparison and the fear of uncertainty. It was innocent and it was breezy and it was real.
Dedication to this blog and to myself is helping me get back to where I was. It’s reminding me to look back through my childhood. I’m remembering what I loved to do and how these things made me feel. I’m seeing how I can translate those into my adult life. I’m trying to release the fears that I associate with them. I wrote stories, drew pictures, designed clothes, made beaded bracelets, wrote songs, made up dances, sang, created a magazine, made foam stamps, scrapbooked, took pictures. I stopped doing almost all of these. Some of these things might not be practical or fulfilling to me anymore, but some might, and I miss the excitement and hope that I felt when expressing myself in these ways. I want this feeling back, and you might want it back too. I want us to get it. Let’s look inward and remember the little girls we were, with the big dreams and creative souls.