what a beautiful july
constantly surrounded by reminders of my past through pictures, people, dates, you name it; naturally i feel compelled to compare different versions of myself in moments in time.
july has acted as the perfect encapsulation of how much can change in one month.
even though i don't think i am a drastically different person, i have most definitely experienced many "firsts" in the last 30 days that consequentially have slightly altered the way i live.
but i feel myself almost forcing this analytical self-perception.
i'm not sure who i'm trying to prove wrong—other than maybe, no, definitely internalized fears from the "innocent" or "goody two shoes" labels placed on me in middle school—but regardless i feel this constant need to show my younger self that i am not who everyone thought me to be.
i swear this whole wanting to be different but wanting to be understood but wanting to be different by being misunderstood... girl stick to a lane you don't get to pick and choose.
really there's no reason to be so attached to the image of myself, and dear god i try to let go of it every day, but alas we live in a digital world where the way we present ourselves online has some underlying superiority based on its aesthetic, following, and perfection.
it's all so stupid! but i digress...
regardless of how much i have reflected on the way i'm perceived and attempted to let it go, i hold onto this tendency and in fact find comfort in noticing how i have grown and regressed back and forth through my little life.
in this, i catch myself searching for what others might see in me.
do they notice this?
how would they feel about that?
does this match the perception of me they have built in their heads?
in sharing new experiences with my friends, a few have mentioned that they find this new stage of my life unexpected from me.
maybe it's my natural draw towards routine that others have noticed; the way the girl who used to strictly go to bed by 10:30 is suddenly coming home later and later each night.
now we're just back to square one overanalyzing yet again, but recently this need for reassurance was shut down by something my dear friend amani said to me.
while others were shocked in my final letting go of the perfect routinely life i had before and instead am just living!!!!! amani reminded me that this was the natural progression into the next stage in our lives that each us take no matter when it hits us.
the period of self exploration in the time between high school and beyond is a time when everybody experiments! just because its hitting me in the summer and hit this person at the end of senior year but won't hit this person until the middle of their freshman year—none of it matters time wise! it's a fact-of-the-matter stage we all go through.
this was something so simple and straightforward, but with me never having experienced this internal shift in my mindset, i had failed to remember the basic way in which things change.
with this, i've never felt more myself.
i've never felt more free and- i don't think i have realized that until this very moment.
i have never felt more free.
i think i have noticed and recognized that i am challenging myself in doing new things, but have failed to find that this feeling of content i have so often returned to in the past few weeks resembles a kind of liberation that i have never experienced before.
yet another first as we speak.
i know literally every damn post on this blog ends with me mentioning the dream life i'm living, but i truly have a hard time trying to wrap my head around the life i have cultivated and have always yearned for.
but with this too, i have tried to accept things as they are and meet myself in the moment rather than getting caught up in a pity party, shaking myself in an attempt to fully grasp onto an ever fleeting moment that is the present.
* * *
july was an escape from reality that allowed me to be rid of my college worries and exist presently in the last moments of my childhood.
although i knew move-in month was approaching, it was still blissful july and therefore nothing could touch me.
now welcoming in august, i am in denial having to let go of all the free days and spontaneous trips to my friends' houses while everyone was still in town.
almost a wake-up call to begin showing up for myself once again, august is the gentle reminder that change is upon us.
summer is coming to an end, and especially with summer 2022 for many of us comes an end to many many more things as well.
while i hope to continue pushing myself out of my comfort zone and learning exponentially more about myself, i will always yearn for the magical, protective energy surrounding these midsummer days.
to a hopeful august, and a beautiful july.