Conversations with our younger selves

One of the strange things about publishing yr own per-zine for going on 10 years (heh) is that sometimes it ends up as a dialogue between the person you were and the person you are now….sometimes i feel like i’m in a female, activist version of Krapp’s last tape, where instead of sneering, I’m hoping I can meet the expectations of my younger self, which for better or worse I put down on paper and then published for the world to read….

The words in the first ever edition of footsteps which sometimes haunt me describe ‘my moment’; that point (and i didn’t recognise it’s significance then) where you realise, for real, that you are never going to be ‘normal’. That you don’t want normal things, that you’ve started down a path and you don’t know where it means or where you’re going, but that you’re kinda committed to it and now you’re just going to have to hold tight for the ride.

‘I sit in Steve’s car and we drive past rows and rows of tiny suburban houses…

and now more the ever i feel the strength of my desires NEVER, NEVER to buy into that.  To travel and write – even alone, obscure, ‘crazy’….whatever.  I cannot fade away into the suburbs like my mother did. As much as I love her.

I won’t.  I fucking won’t.  I want to play by the sea at night dancing in my pants with music, moonlight and laughter.

My laughter.’

But there are expectations in that, and sometimes it’s so fucking hard, and what if my adult self doesn’t measure up, what if I fuck it up, what if it’s too much and i give in and give up….what if, what if, what if…..

And I keep thinking back to Emily’s piece in Anecdotal Evidence – because i think it’s brilliant and beautiful; and so so relevant to this that I’ve quoted here in full….

‘I finally feel like I could meet with my sixteen year old self without feeling I had let her down. I used to think she would be so disappointed if she could see me now.  That she would be so angry at me, for not finishing university, for putting on so much weight, for still not figuring out what I want to do with my life, especially when she had such high hopes for me.  That she would hate me for screwing everything up, just when she was doing so well.  But then I realised, she wasn’t like that. She didn’t even care about these things, not when I told her about all the friends I had made, the bands I had played in, the projects I had been involved in, and the way I had finally begun to feel comfortable in my own skin. 

She would have nothing but respect, love and admiration for me. 

I think I could do to remember that sometimes’

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About Rachel

zinester/diy-til-i-die/love hate relationship with arts admin/girlpunkfeminist/geek
This entry was posted in new stuff, old writing, people who rock, something i learnt today and tagged , . Bookmark the permalink.

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