Hey. I’ve been a bit quiet lately and not for lack of having things on my mind, actually quite the opposite. I haven’t been able to sort through all the feelings I’m having lately into a nice and tidy blog post. But thankfully Lena Dunham has done the extraordinary task of creating a season – really, the whole series – that mirrors the evolution of a 20-something creative girl trying to become the woman she always imagined herself being. And all the shit that happens because of how you’re trying to get there.
The post I’ve wanted to write has to do with growing up and redefining your perspective on your relationships with your family, friends, and coworkers. I’ve been overwhelmed thinking about discussing the complexity of it and then watching the penultimate episode of Girls last night made me feel ALL the feels. Still, I rewatched it tonight and I cried even harder than the first time I saw it.
I know that I’m not the only one who feels this deeply connected to this narrative. Maybe I’m one of only a few who will admit it straight up because a lot of people my age hate the idea of Girls being a true reflection of a female millennial perspective. But in doing so, they really are kind of playing right into it.
When you’re working a full-time retail management job and trying to sustain creativity in your free time, it can be difficult to stop and smell the roses. It can be difficult to do anything in your off time besides lay on the couch like a petrified mummy. Not too long ago, I had all the time in the world to do exactly that – to contemplate, to plan, to nurture my studio practice. But I didn’t. I dragged my feet, knowing that there was always a tomorrow to continue working on my checklist. And I ended up never finishing, never starting anything really. I was treading water.
It was inevitable that I’d have to return to full-time work. I mean, the drawing thing just wasn’t happening (well, I wasn’t making it happen) and a girl has got to eat and support her caffeine slash shopping addiction. So here I am, struggling to keep up the energy to be positive and motivational for my team at work and baffled as to how I’m going to manage keeping up the pace in my independent pursuits. With the holidays here and in my face, all I want to do is eat and be merry. Can you blame me? I don’t want to keep holing myself up in my house, with my little paints, trying to produce pretty on paper (or bags). But if I stop now, then what? What comes next?
Every few weeks I tend to experience an identity crisis. I have the awful plague of being a creative and ambitious individual which means nothing is ever good enough, including myself. In order to pull myself out of this hopeless hole, I have to do something that will lead me back to remembering who I really am. Sometimes it’s rambling on to my boyfriend about how I’m too far behind to do anything worthwhile in my life, to which he usually responds with reassuring words about how everyone loves everything I do. Other times it’s chatting with best friends who usually tell me how much they admire my strength and courage.
Today it happens to be that I’m reminded of who I am by my birth date. Everyone loves reading descriptions of themselves and their potential futures, in hopes that their own self-image and desired goals will be confirmed as what destiny had intended for them. While I do believe that we are in control of our own lives, I also think you can’t get anywhere without knowing thyself.