What a Difference 2 Years Makes

“You either like me or you don’t. It took me twenty-something years to learn how to love myself, I don’t have that kinda time to convince somebody else.” – Daniel Franzese

I was cleaning out my desk the other day and found some old things that made me nostalgic. A small, plastic box of Hello Kitty eraser heads, a tiny pink Barbie camera key chain, a pink RAZR, a pair of glasses with plastic lenses, and a piece paper from 12/31/15.

The Hello Kitty eraser heads and Barbie key chain must have been from 2nd grade…maybe even earlier than that. Somehow I’ve managed to keep them all these years, even after I moved out of my parents’ house. The pink RAZR was my mom’s, but it made me miss my old one so I held onto it. I tried texting with the alphabetical sequence keypad and it felt weird to physically push in numbers with touch screens now taking their place. The pair of glasses made me laugh. I think they originally belonged to my younger sister before she got real glasses. They made me look more writerly…whatever that meant. Lastly, the piece of paper from 12/31/15 was a list of my old resolutions for 2016.

I was in the process of trying to love myself. I wasn’t sure who I was or who I wanted to be. All I knew was: I wanted to get to the point where I could say I loved myself and didn’t owe anyone else any convincing or explanation. So I put Daniel Franzese’s quote on the back side of the paper. The front had a few words or phrases I’ve resolved to follow from past years written around the center words: Be positive. Be happy. Be me. I knew this would be the glue to hold my resolutions together. (Spoiler alert: It didn’t work.) I ripped up the paper and kept the quote. I knew those three words were more important than the resolutions.

Two years later and I feel stronger than ever. I’ve noticed a shift in perspective and how I’ve flourished in the last two years. I decided to part with the items I found in my desk. Every time I reorganized, I would hold onto these things because I couldn’t let them go. But I realized it was okay if I did. I could let go of some pieces of childhood that I didn’t remember having until my usual cleaning and reorganizing days came around.

I tossed the erasers and camera key chain. I put the cell phone and glasses in a pile to bring back to my childhood home. And I tossed the piece of paper because, as I stated on January 3rd, I’m not making resolutions anymore. Some of my resolutions will still exist as goals in my head, but I decided to move away from the clutter of the past, including making resolutions to do things I knew would never happen. With a clear mind, I knew I was still on the right path.

Sometimes, all it takes is a bit of nostalgia to remind you that you’re not the same person you were two years ago, two months ago, two weeks ago, and even two days ago. Change is good.

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