I couldn't say this is something I've never struggled with. I really couldn't say that I never knew someone who didn't struggle with this, ever. I think, though, it's time to confront this, shall we?
Since I was a wee one, I knew I was a weird kid; albeit, tried to avoid such facts. I loved film, taking pictures of the weirdest shit: bugs eating each other, mashed up flowers turned "floral soup", close-ups of fibers, staged lover scenes, fights, whatever my imagination could create. I loved recording myself talking; I liked hearing my voice speak out loud, becoming emotional with words, with the rise and fall of happiness meets sadness. But none of that could necessarily be public knowledge. So, I tapped into my more resourceful Gemini skills like running after-school clubs: the recycling club (we didn't recycle one thing), the babysitters club (membership: 1), the nickel club (come and bring a nickel, that's it), taking acting classes (one time), becoming a cheerleader, acting out in class as the loudmouth. I liked being a boss, I liked being popular, I liked being encouraged. Those attributes tended to lead my personality through adulthood, instead of tapping into my more "weird" attributes: more demure, less vocal, more attentive, less leading, more creatively expressive, less "being seen". I think my teens revolved around being normal, well, as normal as I really could be.
I started this blog out of expressive. Making websites on Homestead at 13 years old, to Xanga pages, and Blogger blogspots, to Typepad, to Wordpress, to today, my goal was to outwardly express. I'm not really sure I ever knew what - if you search hard enough, you'll find plenty of blogs with my simply little life displayed all over the web. I liked journaling outwardly, I think I wanted to connect with someone because I always thought I was misunderstood. Creating this particular blog (after many trials and errors), I thought it would be about my personal style. Little did I know, that was no where near where I would lead myself to.
I grew up in the blogging world - close friends are some of the largest influencers on this insanely digital planet. And we connected because our friends couldn't connect with our need to express our style and talk about putting it on the internet. We never thought it would be this way today. With that said, I thought I'd continue on sharing bits of my life but mostly my style, as it was supposed to be done. I conformed to what my surroundings were, not catering to those other attributes we talked about. But, as you can tell if you've followed for as long as this blog has been around, both sides of my Gemini self fight - never consistent, struggling with who Profresh Style is. Who is this girl?
All this is to share a realization I had recently of my relentless need to conform.
There was a moment where I realized I'm not going to be like said friends. I'm not going to be projected as the next best fill-in-the-blank. And I won't be categorized as one-veined. I happen to love that each story I share with you is just that; a story. I f*cking love writing, if only I'd gone to school, I would do this professionally. I love sharing what happens in my world because, like above, I have the need to connect beyond my circles. I don't need said titles to be categorized as authentic to this industry. I like being authentic to the reader, to the person who clicks on this and checks in with me from time to time. And, sometimes that's to see what I'm wearing and sometimes, it's about something I'm loving, something I'm doing, something I'm hoping for, something I'm buying. But, sometimes it's a story, to connect back to myself, to express something that happened that I need to see in words on a screen, for myself, for you, whoever is wanting to read. I'm okay with not being "brand-friendly", whatever that's suppose to be. My success is not measured in the campaigns I've participated in, opting out of or never was approached for. My journey does not sit on the success of other friends and their personal journeys (as some have speculated... #sideeye). My blog is not about what others wish it would be, most definitely not. My purpose is to share and to connect with you, those that choose to come here and read it. And damn, I'm lucky to be able to say I can do that. I would fear the day I'm not allowed to express myself the way I do now because someone told me it wasn't "brand-friendly."
So, don't conform.
Don't seek acceptance in the dark.
Don't look for approval in every move you make.
Besides the most incredible quote above, I want to leave you with one last one that made me realize that this is about my journey and no one else's.
I really, actually, fucking love you. Like, whatever this massive, empty internet space is filled with, I love it/you and so grateful there are people I can connect with all over the world. I hope you're sharing your world with others, we all need to try and understand each other and less about comparing to conform. x