Today I wanted to talk a little bit about ‘making your mark’ or leaving your personal imprint in the world, in terms of how we look back on ourselves from a certain point in our lives. That sounds a bit odd, but the idea came to me when my dad stated something a while back over dinner…
“It’s funny really, when you’re older and we look back, we won’t have many pictures of you in summer dresses, will we Tolly?” is what he said.
What he said really stuck with me, but not for the wrong reasons (just in case you’re worried Papa Posh!). It got me thinking about the idea of our future and past selves and how in the digital age of instantly uploadable photographs and Facebook ‘Memories’, we’re always looking at what we were like then and now, and how it will be so much easier to compare our past selves and cringe over decisions we made ‘back in the day’ when we have this back log of data and endless streams of photos and saved moments in the future.
What my dad was saying was true – when people look back on my younger self, there won’t be any floral dresses or what some might label as ‘girly’ photos of me, because I’m just not that kind of person. I’m not a tomboy or anything like that (I mean, I’m wearing a dress in these photos and my blog is covered in pink and purple – ugh, *eye roll* 🙄 to stereotypes) but I’ve never been the average kind of gal to prance around in little ankle socks and daisy chain printed skirts.
Having the means to digitalise memories and have them saved onto your laptops and phones (or ‘in the cloud’) means we can see all of the changes and transitions happening, and I think what we need to do is accept that. Things do change. We all change.
For people my age, this is probably one of the hardest things to accept. The idea that we don’t stay as this set person and we don’t always end up being the person we thought we’d be. We can try our best to mould ourselves into what we want to be, but there’s always going to be things that we can’t help doing differently. The reason I’m connecting the dot between this and what my dad said, is because I evolve constantly. I don’t wear summery items of clothing because I’m wearing faux-leather jackets and utility dresses one minute and then blouses and bohemian dresses the next. That’s part of becoming who I am – and part of that is realising, I won’t be able to look back on myself and see this one type of person. No matter how hard I try to create this one aesthetic, there will always be multiple, because I’m still changing.
As a blogger and someone who uses social media rather often, I know what it means to be putting out this specific persona and display of yourself. You probably do too, whether it’s because of what you’re posting or what others are posting. How many Instagram accounts do you go on which are neatly laid out and in a specific colour scheme? Dozens, maybe hundreds, probably… and that’s great; it’s creative and uniform and part of art, but do you know what the biggest struggle is when you start to do that? Adapting to change.
Accepting that change and realising that looking back on what you were then compared to now, is so important. I was listening to a podcast recently (Ladies Who Lunch, if you’re curious) and one of the ladies (who lunches, heh – Cat, I believe) said that she – as a YouTuber and online influencer – is glad that she has the ability to look back and see where she came from, because it’s an archive of her life and her journey.
We have this incredible ability to store the outfits and the hairstyles and the make-up looks and the places we went and the inspiration we found in our own personal archives. We are the curators of our own archives. It’s scary, sure… the idea that we’ll look back and regret decisions or cringe over them, but that’s the great thing about storing it all and utilising these tools – we can gradually accept change and we can look back after a few weeks and start going ‘Oh, well I wouldn’t do that now’. We have time to process change, and we really need to take advantage of that.
In response to my dad’s statement – you’re right. You won’t see many pictures of me in fluttery dresses and cardigans, but what you will see, is a timeline of the person I’ll become and a record of what not wearing those summery prints, means to me.
Do you find it hard to accept the fact you aren’t the same person you were last year? Are you happy with your personal archive so far? Let me know in the comments!
Lots of Love… Tolly Dolly Posh xx