February was a hard month for me, so I wrote a short essay on comparing our stories and struggles and experiences and wondering why we don't have what everyone else has. It was originally published yesterday on my newsletter.
Maybe it's weird but I use incredible, amazing, or sometimes tragic events as markers in my life. It's almost been two years since someone broke up with me, which is something that I've gone back to as a significant event in my life. It's important to recognize when you change and how you got from where you were to where you've been. We don't celebrate it enough. Lately, I've been too busy worrying about what everyone else is doing and the amazing things they get to do that I'm not paying attention to my own growth. I see people my own age (and younger!) than me that are doing exactly what I wish I was doing. The Internet has given me incredible opportunities and a lot of friends, but it has also helped make that green-eyed monster a little bit bigger.
The past two years since my relationship ended have been incredibly enriching and fulfilling - I feel like I've come into my own as a person. But I feel like I'm incredibly behind in life. I feel too old to still be in school, I feel like I have passed my prime and that I should've been doing more when I was between the ages of 18 to 21. Instead of celebrating where I was and how I got to be where I am today, I spend far too much time comparing myself to others - even though we all have completely different journeys. Instead of recognizing my achievements and what I've done, I don't feel like it's enough because it's not what so-and-so has achieved.
So it's in these moments that I have to remember how far we've come. I have friends that have been at rock bottom and now flourishing, friends that have had depression and eating disorders and not being interested in living anymore and ready to throw in the towel completely. But, somehow, they've all pulled together and created a beautiful life away from that green-eyed monster, because that green-eyed monster doesn't do any good. It doesn't help us celebrate our achievements or create more fulfilling relationships, or remember where we were and how we had to army crawl through the mud to get to where we are today. Dirt under our fingernails and all. I don't know about you, but I don't want to spend life with a green glaze over my eyes, comparing my life to someone else's. I don't want to forget the dirt that I had to get through while I was at rock bottom, and you shouldn't forget either. Our past, our struggles, and everything else that makes our journey ours shouldn't be forgotten - even if it's nitty and gritty and not very pretty to look at. Let's celebrate it together.
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