Updated: Aug 29, 2019
Nostalgia is a strange emotion, yet it’s almost overlooked in the world of feelings.
The issue with nostalgia is that it hits us constantly as we work through each chapter of our lives – kind of like the recurring sequels of Bring It On. It just keeps coming back.
There’s a two-sided coin with loss and renewal and almost always there’s a delay in our acceptance in this. On one hand we are happy to move on from one chapter and approach our new adventure or new situation; but at the same time, the positive memories from the previous experience follow us around like a confused cloud. Sprinkling happy memories at the times that we are struggling with our new path. I’m not sure if you have experienced this, but it’s so unusual.
I’ll take you back a few years to when I lived in a damp and mouldy house in London with three of my closest friends. I don’t think I’ve ever experienced tiredness like it, I had four jobs that would all start one after the other! First thing in the morning I’d be spraying perfume in a huge department store, by the afternoon I’d be folding clothes in the dingy basement of a retail shop on Oxford Street, then I’d run across the West End to tear tickets in one of the theatres and finally end the day serving cocktails in a swanky bar in Chelsea. Disclaimer – this was not everyday thank goodness, most days I just did two jobs.
Anyway, some people may call this crazy, but I thought this was the norm. I knew that if I wanted to live in London and still have some form of epic social life, I had to work my socks off. It actually didn’t occur to me at the time that I could learn skills that would allow me to out-earn all four jobs and just do one 📷 But that’s a different story.
The house that we lived in saved us some serious money because it was dirt cheap. However, this was mainly because the mould problem was out of control – our walls would actually be dripping with water and the number of shoes we all threw away because they’d get covered in fur was ridiculous. We all were constantly sick and run down and anyone that would come to visit, would leave coughing and spluttering! Additionally, one day one of the girls got home before we did, and realised that the house had been broken into – the entire house was tipped upside down, our personal belongings had been thrown around. They went through everything. We were all extremely scared and completely devastated. The interesting thing about that night is that we grabbed all of our quilts and pillows and every weapon we could from the kitchen and we all slept in one room together. We chatted for hours and huddled close, we were grateful that none of us were home taking a nap while the intruder came in, we giggled about the fact that we had absolutely nothing of value in the entire house and we bonded and showed each other that it was ok to be scared, as long as we had each other.
Moments like this don’t happen everyday. And although we’ve all moved on to muchhhhh better paths, it’s hard at times to not miss the minimal responsibilities that we had, the cheapest rent in the world, the spontaneous nature of life, lying around streaming reality tv and eating endless takeaways without gaining weight! When I look back I rarely remember the tough times, just the great moments – that’s how nostalgia works, and it can confuse the hell out of you.
The same thing happens with past relationships or friendships, jobs and experiences. They say that everything in life is either a lesson or a blessing; So when a chapter ends, smile because you were fortunate to experience it. And take the time to understand why it was part of your story. There’s always a reason, no matter how difficult it is to see at first. The fact that you’re even feeling nostalgia shows that you are progressing and moving forward, so my advice is to just keep going.