I don't know quite how I'm going to write this.
I've been feeling something that I haven't felt before, ever. It's not very often that happens to me; for all the different emotions I manage to go through in a day, they're usually more than familiar to me. I usually know that they will pass or that I will just ignore them or deal with them, or something.
I've felt a strange, backwards, and undoubtedly nonsensical yearning for 15 year old me. 15 year old us. 15 year old everyone, but mainly the mess.
Not because things were easy when I was 15. Hell, they were probably harder than they are now; i'm just a whole lot more self aware now than I was then. Not because I wish that I lacked any sort of faith as I did then, or because I miss any people in particular, but because the hard stuff was all so simple.
We grew up through girls school constantly surrounded by mess. Mess comprised of horrible family circumstannces and horrible mental health problems. Surrounded by girls forcing themselves to self destruct and girls who were in horrible situations but so many threads ran through so many of them that it was simple, really.
I don't mean to take too much away from the complexity of each individual situation; the situations which comprised the mess were individually incredibly complex, we just had considerably less idea of it then. I don't wish to play them down and I'd be the first to make a fuss about a glossy magazine trying to explain an eating disorder in two paragraphs, it's just that the mess was the only thing we ever had to deal with. We had homework and exams and mess, that was it. That took up all of our time; certainly all of my time; but there wasn't anything more stressful than that. Do the homework, go to dance class, eat your dinner, appease the teachers, appease the parents, appease whatever was currently going on in your own head, repeat.
I don't want to go back to being 15. I don't want that time in my life back, I don't want the mess back; but I don't have to want to mess back. The mess didn't ever go anywhere.
What I'm longing for is being able to give the mess my full attention. Now the mess is still there; more than there. Prevalent, I'd argue. Now though, we have an obligation to get on with our lives. We have DBS forms, tenancy agreements, tax returns to fill out. Laundry to do, food to cook, beds to change, things that just won't wait. Things that won't do themselves while we sit for hours speaking to the people that we need to speak to and contemplating our own inner turmoil to the extent we need to in order to get to the bottom of it. There simply isn't time to write how we feel in a journal until we work ourselves and everyone around us out, or to read endless blog posts or online journal entries of other people just to feel a little bit less like we're on our own.
The mess still needs attention, but the mundane has to have it immediately, because life continues around the mess.
This was born out of two very specific events; listening to a song that I hadn't heard since I was in high school, and watching Grace Victory's video where not only does the song sound like I'd have had it on repeat for hours when I was in year ten, but more to the point, she writes all of these things that she believes about herself on her body. Stark reminders that the mess still exists and it isn't only in my life, but in a huge number of other people's lives too.
The mess needs our attention. It needs to be noticed, not to be allowed to continue, to be dealt with; but so often we find ourselves without the space either in our calendars or our own minds to even contemplate dealing with the mess.