Because as per usual, when I come back to this blog, I come back and write multiple things before disappearing again – I have more thoughts to write.
I had a conversation with my friends yesterday about the idea of being authentically yourself and living your best life. It came from the idea that when my friends look at me, they see me and my “brand” – that I am unconditionally and irrevocably myself, whereas they feel they think too much about how other people might judge them for being themselves.
I told them life is too short to not like the things you like, to not be who you want to be. I told them that if you can’t like the things you like, then what do you even have? I told them that so many things eat away at you in life – eat away at me (my depression, my anxiety, my self-esteem) that if I can’t throw myself wholeheartedly into enjoying the things I enjoy – if it becomes another chore to me, another worry, then what would I even have left?
I learned this as a freshman in undergrad. At the time, I was sick of being the “nerdy Pokemon cosplay girl”. I thought that nobody saw the real me. And I didn’t know who the real me was. I was obsessed with the idea that I was just putting on different masks for different people, and that none of them were me, and that that was all people saw. I made a Facebook post. I don’t remember exactly what it said, but it was something along the lines of “what do you think of when you think of me?”
One of my friends said that they thought of my “triangle hair” (I had a really weird hairdo at the time), but the rest of those who responded, including the guy I was dating at the time, all said something about anime, cosplay, Pokemon, or something similar. And the thought of that made me cry.
In the months after that, I thought a lot about why that made me cry, and why I was trying to turn away from things I liked. It wasn’t making me happier. It wasn’t making me a different person. I was still me, regardless of the “mask” I put on to talk to someone, or whatever subject we were talking about. And so eventually, I just went with it. I like the things I like.
I know that sounds like a tautology, but it was a really significant realization for me. I’m allowed to like things. I’m allowed to throw myself into my passions wholeheartedly and earnestly. I’m allowed to be who I want to be.
My name is Nikki. I like anime, cartoons, video games, and comics. I like cats more than most people and wish I could pull of goth fashion and sometimes try to anyway. I like tattoos and Green Day, my favorite song right now is “Broken” by Lovelytheband, and Yuri!!! on Ice saved my life.
If I have one thing going for me, even as the rest of my life falls apart, I know that I will always be me. Honestly, earnestly, unconditionally, irrevocably, authentically, me.
And sometimes, that’s all I need.