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29 December 2016 @ 12:10 pm
December Days 28 - Nostalgia Strikes Hard  
[It's December Days time! There's no overarching theme this year, so if you have ideas of things to write about, I'm more than happy to hear them.]

Advice to teenagers to ignore the hype that says your teen years are the best years of your life. And yet, the strong emotional states of those years make the things we experienced them memorable.

Even now, I still recognize some of the celebrity READ posters from previous decades, for example, and they have memories of the libraries attached to them.

I'm told that brain science (and Inside Out) has figured out that strong emotional content makes memories stick. Which is why the day to day seems to slip away so easily. Which can actually make it difficult to recognize if you're in a bad situation or relationship, incidentally - the more bad and horrible things are normal to you, the harder it is to realize what's being done is wrong. Getting out early can avoid those tasks, but not everyone shows their full hand immediately.

Anyway, memory tied strongly to emotion, teenage years and college years as basically full of emotions, and strong ones for that matter, makes them very easy to remember - for good or ill. I suspect the people who have fond memories of those times are ones whose privilege or support network made it easy for them to transition into their identities and out into the adult world - the invisible things that made it so they don't have to worry completely about adult responsibilities, or have to spend spoons on disability or resilience against hate and assault. And because, for those people, the amount of free time they had to pursue interests (or not) was a lot greater, so they didn't feel as rushed or worried or concerned about making ends meet and about their financial situations. Or kids, pets, and other things.

It would be nice to retreat for a bit and let others handle all of those things and be secure in the knowledge that they will be taken care of. That's what friends and partners are there to help with, I'm guessing. Tough decisions when I was younger were about games to play and when to see friends. Tough decisions as an adult, well... that's another thing entirely. I can totally see the appeal of the relationship dynamic where someone gets to set aside all of those things for a negotiated length of time and just focus on the now and the person(s) in front of them. Whether as the person giving it receiving our both. We crave having a place of our own to go to when things get overwhelming, and without that place, there's very little that can be done for growth or learning. I guess it makes sense for it to come from a place where things felt safe, and for many people, I guess that's childhood.

Somewhere in all of this, in sure there's a piece of wisdom. Perhaps a story about a link who set his burden down quite a ways ago, or something about the simple and healing powers of nature, or being without focus, or just being more mindful of everything that comes through. I'm not really sure what it is, though, and whether it applies at all.

The advice about ignoring your teen years as your best years is sound, though - we have already done more as adults in the way of accomplishments than we did as teenagers. So much more, even when it doesn't seem like it at all.

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Current Music: Koji Kondo - Song of Time