Sometimes I think my writing would be much more interesting if I were still a wandering soul.
I used to decry that as a confused early twenty-something my stresses prevented me from thinking creatively. Between the ages of 20 and 25 that I lived in Los Angeles, I did little to release my artistic passions. I was drowning in my self-made cocktail of existentialism and narcissism. Sick of hearing myself talk about my petty, but nonetheless troubling issues caused me to move to another city to “find myself”.
Which I did.
Now I’m boring.
I work from home, forget to change out of my pajamas and garden poorly.
I wouldn’t say that “I’ve figured it all out” though. Who ever does? In many ways, we’re ambling spirtis our entire lives; always searching, always learning and always changing.
However, I’m a far cry from the girl I was five years ago.
The girl at 23 didn’t know what she wanted in a career or in love. She thought she always knew herself, but for the first time in her life felt like a stranger to her actions and thoughts. She was saying and doing things that she thought was so unlike her, but in reality she was coming into herself the entire time.
At one point I was a really conflicted person. Not in a, “I eat heroin and have orgies with struggling musicians” kind of way, but more of a, “I’m going to drink here alone in my bed and drunk dial everyone I know, especially ex-boyfriends, until I pass out” kind of way.
I spent a lot of lonely and drunken nights writing nonsensical journal entries about wanting to be held by someone, then taking snapshots of my numbed and droopy face. Living in a city known to be alienating while working as a personal assistant to famous people did not bode well for my social or dating life. After working 10 to 12 hour days, I’d be too exhausted to leave the house and found more solace in my bottle of Grey Goose and camera than anywhere else. When I did date, I found men who weren’t interested in actually dating me and I told myself that I was ok with that, that I was looking for the same thing. Little did I know how much I was betraying my then hidden, but still alive somewhere deep down sense of self-worth and desire to have a healthy and loving relationship.
That girl longed to be the person she is now and sometimes I long to be that sad girl again. Only in a creative way. I’m realizing now that though I was paralyzed by my emotions and did little to express them creatively, it has created great fodder for my writing. At 23 I felt I didn’t have the life experiences to create anything worthwhile. Now I have an arsenal of them. I’m creating life experiences as I type this!
I don’t miss that girl because I want to be her again; I’m happy with the way my life is now. However, maybe I’m just longing for my youth. Those early days of holding onto hope and wonderment, of holding my breath and waiting for my life to happen to me. Or maybe I’m sad I wasn’t more of a mess, that I don’t have wild stories of debauchery and careless behavior to feed into my writing. No long list of one night stands, stories of drug-induced drives to Mexico or moments of near-death and spiritual awakenings to reference. I’ve always been the good girl, even when I wasn’t.
As an artist, it all seems so romantic, doesn’t it? Being a mess.
I just have to remind myself that it’s not.