Becoming Someone Else
Sometimes I sit here and think about my life back when I was eighteen. I started off my eighteenth year with some guy who I didn’t care about much, but slept with anyway (I once called him “Sir SmokesALot” on here). Then a month later I graduated to sleeping with some guy I cared about who didn’t care about me (Landon). Then a month later I went even further and slept with a guy who I fell in love with, who fell in love with me, and who completely stole my heart (Fred). And through all of this mess of feelings (not to mention surviving my last year of high school with zero motivation), I managed to be pretty bad-ass.
I knew exactly who I was. And if I didn’t, I’d figure it out tomorrow. I felt alive and full of hopes and dreams and wanting to get the hell out of my hometown. I didn’t let people push me around. I walked through the halls of my shitty high school, and for the first time, was able to wave to at least one person each time I was heading to class. I had friends, I had friends-of-friends. I was slightly reckless, slightly responsible, and completely excited about life. I felt like the possibilities were endless, and I was always looking forward to the next time I would get to see my man (Fred).
And here I am, years later. I never thought I’d miss those days, but man do I ever. I guess I like my life now—I have food and a place to live and my mom and my friends back home and my friends here in college town and my girlfriend, and yet it makes me miss being eighteen. I knew who I was and what I wanted. And now…now I don’t even know what I want myself to look like. I just know I want to be happy, and not near-happy-but-not-quite like I feel right now. I’m probably going to have to go back on Prozac, to be honest. I just feel like no matter what I do, I hurt people, and no matter what I want, I can’t have it—at least not the way I want to have it.
My eighteen year-old self would probably love some things about my life now. She would love that I live away from my parents in college town and in an apartment. She would love my henna tattoo and my super-short hair, the fact that I want another piercing and have plans for a couple legit tattoos. But there are other things she would frown at. She would hate that I’m so wishy-washy, that I just do the things other people want, and never take the night by the reins. She would hate how little I say about what I actually think and feel to other people. She would tell me to screw what other people might think about how I feel, and to go figure it out for myself. She would hate how my girlfriend doesn’t know this person I was, and just knows this people-pleasing lump of “Whatever you want”. “Fuck that!” she’d say, “Play your music, go out and explore if you want, watch your TV shows, dress however the fuck you want. Go get pierced! Go out with your friends again! Stop waiting around for life and go live it!”
I thought being with my girlfriend and trying out the things she likes was being adventurous, and I guess it was at first. But now I’ve put myself into this box of what I can and can’t do based on what she likes, and that’s some utter bullshit right there. I can’t change into someone else more like her, and live like a doormat. I’ve got to follow my heart (as cheesy as that sounds) and become someone I can love, not someone she can love. (And this all isn’t her fault, it’s entirely my own, just for the record.)
And I’m going to start it off with a list of things I want to do. And I’m not going to stop this crusade of change until I accomplish everything on it. And my eighteen year old self (and current self) will be proud…because life is too short to try to be selling yourself a version of who you are that you just aren’t happy being.