Tomorrow I’ll be revisiting the past, acquainting myself with a woman who I haven’t spoken to in years. It’s weird how the past repeats itself, even when everything has changed. Which is why it only seems fitting that I bring some magazines along with me.
The woman who I’m visiting tomorrow was the person who helped me discover my love for magazines. She bought me some while I was visiting because she didn’t want me to get bored, and I loved everything about them. I loved looking at the various outfit possibilities, splattered across the page like an infinite closet that made my nine year old heart swoon. I loved reading my horoscope, only hoping that I really would meet a cute guy at the beach and make a new best friend on the first day of school. I loved finding the reality that existed within the celebrities’ lives, making me forever believe that big dreams were possible. That they are possible.
For years to come, I’d buy all of the teen magazines I could possibly get. I would read them cover to cover, not just once, but possibly hundreds of times. The idea that things went out of style never settled well with me. I’d look at magazines that were years old, still taking equal amounts of inspiration from them. They were such a major part of my life that memories were locked within the pages; I could define time periods based on the publication dates of Girls’ Life and Seventeen. In fact, I can still page through those magazines and feel exactly how I felt during those times.
Despite this love for magazines, and my passion for writing, it had never occurred to me that I could become a journalist until I job shadowed at a local newspaper. I had always associated journalism with being overly dramatic and sensationalized. I had completely forgotten about all the stories that existed within the pages of a magazine, not just within the words, but within my fading memory that gets a little bit clearer every time I pick up the May 2008 issue of Twist. Without those magazines, maybe my big dreams wouldn’t exist. Maybe I’d try to settle for a “normal job”. For some people, magazines cause confidence issues. But they made me the dreamer I am now. And to think that maybe I wouldn’t be the same girl if I hadn’t been handed a copy of J-14 is a little bit strange, but also incredible.
Now that I’ve grown older, the same magazines don’t appeal to me. And yet still, I flip through the pages and enter a world full of moments and memories where my dreams aren’t that far away, but my past still resides. I’m moving forward. But I don’t plan on completely letting go of all the things and people and places that guided me here. All the pages of the magazines that made me start to write my own.