Like all things in my life everything is exaggerated. I can’t be normal. Maybe it’s my screws upstairs that are missing or that personality disorder is traits that I often talk about. My daughters birthday is coming up. I’m big on birthdays, or was. I would show up to work in a full on bling not plastic tiara for my birthday. My celebration lasted a month. I felt like life itself was a celebration, another year, another day, another chance to change things.
For my daughters first birthday I celebrated with friends and family in New York and Florida. For her second birthday I did the same. Since my daughter is in camp I opted this year to buy a cake for the girls at camp. A friend of mine who’s motto is “the road to hell is paved with good intentions” comes to mind. I wanted to buy her a cute cake. Not a plain $20 cake. So I went with a unicorn cake. The problem? It’s massive. So much so that on a train during rush hour I would have pancake by the time I got to Harlem.
So I decided to call a lyft. The problem is that my driver is nice but he’s giving me anxiety as I sit in the back. He’s taken routes that I’m like what? So here i sit wondering what exactly the bill will be since I’m still in Brooklyn and this trip said it would take 30 min has now become 42. I’m trying to take things in stride. Life is short. I won’t always be around with my daughter. She drives me nuts and I probably threaten to spank her at least 3 times a day. But these are the things that I do to make sure she has a great time. It’s the details, the memories. Kids don’t need much, this I know. But I want her to always remember that I always tried to make her feel special.
If I had to write some wisdom to my younger self, I would remind myself to try to enjoy the journey. In a generation where information is at your disposal and beauty or its faux standard in your face, sometimes I feel sorry for the children of today. When I was 12 I was 12. I didn’t know entirely about sex, I wasn’t obsessed with my appearance. In fact, I played with dolls, watched 90210 without fully understanding the implications of the show. I was in essence a kid. I rollerbladed, rode my bike without worrying that a strand of hair would be out of place. I was a kid.
When I hit high school, I was aware of my own beauty both internally and externally but once again it didn’t affect the things I did. Social media is a monster. Even back then and I’ll explain why. I enjoyed what I could of my years given my circumstances. My physical appearance wasn’t a hindrance in any way growing up because I didn’t care what people thought. In all honesty I never had body image issues. I never suffered self doubt or confidence. In fact, it was the opposite.
When I grew up in my 20’s Myspace was the internet crack. When I started posting photos that’s when I became somewhat aware. People would leave comments about my luscious lips. To me before my MySpace page my lips were just lips. They would comment on my toned legs how amazing they were. To me, I had toned legs because I had no car and had to walk everywhere. The point is that social media began to make me notice things about myself that I hadn’t realized or taken notice to. In my mind, I was just beautiful because.
I talk to my daughter all the time. I explain to her that as she grows up, I will let her do more things. Everything at its age. The most important thing I tell her is to enjoy her journey. She will only live it once. Don’t try to grow up too fast because before you know it you’re an adult with your own responsibilities and you can’t go back. Enjoy being care free and a child. The last most important thing I teach my daughter is yes she is beautiful. But don’t put your focus on vanity. An empty mind and an empty heart render you empty. You can be as pretty as you want but be grow up to be a woman of substance for beauty fades.
The reason I brought this up is that my daughters half sister has been dying to turn 13. She lives a much faster life than I did. But her rush to grow up makes me sad. I told her as much the other day. I told her to enjoy her youth while she can. That I couldn’t understand her rush to grow up. When I was 16, 18 was my goal so I could go out. After 18, I hit 20 and then they flew away and I stare at my 30’s. I enjoyed my years despite my adversity. But I wish I had spent more time enjoying my youth. Because there is no fountain of youth… once you go forward you can’t go back.
Since I was young I dressed to the 9’s even if I went to the supermarket. I could walk 5 miles in pumps to the market. I’ve gone through many phases in my life. I had plans tonight for the first time in forever. At first I threw on a dress. But then, I changed into jeans a sparkly top and a cardigan. Being comfortable in your skin means whether you’re in a thong or jeans no matter the place you’re okay with yourself.
Case in point, I’ve always been open to new things. My best friend and her friend were friends going to a rock concert. I was in my latter 20’s. How did I show up? Smokey glasses, jeans, baby pink top with a beige covering sweater and a matching bag with heels. Did I look out of place? You think? Did I care? Not at all. I had a good time even if I did look like I belonged on the red carpet not a goth/rock event. I was comfortable with myself.
After years of dressing up I’ll confess to you, I’m sick of it. I’m sick of suits, I’m sick of heels. A lot of this is also the culmination of years of the focus of others on my appearance. There was a point in my life that I was sick of being attractive. I was sick of people focusing on my body, my hot body, my pretty face when I was so much more than that. Let’s not builshit each other, we’re a vain society and that plays a large role in life. People are judged by their appearances.
Leggings and jeans are my life now. I never experienced this comfort before because I was too busy dressing up for the emmys all the time. Now I find that task to tedious to be bothered with. The older I get, the more my focus becomes on peace, happiness and life. Experiencing life and for me that means removing the white noise from my life. Tonight I celebrate another year above ground. I am thankful for every second and everyone that made it such a memorable experience because I haven’t had this much fun in a while.
So remember, live your days, enjoy your life, the rest is irrelevant. Always, always be true to yourself.