A decade of being a sad girl

Notes on Facebook – 2009 vs 2019

How long have you had the shirt you’re wearing?

December 30, 2009:
a long time. LOLL
since september octoberish 2008.

December 30, 2019:
shirt – since 2017
hoodie – since 2012

Tom’s River?, New Jersey, 2009

How are you sitting?

2009:
my legs are crossed.

2019:
legs on my chair, both folded. left knee down, right knee up.

Sunset at band camp – Ramara, Ontario, 2010

Do you plan on sleeping in tomorrow?

2009:
no. >.>
but just watch, i’ll sleep in anyway.
i’m still marveling at the fact that i actually dragged myself up from bed that early.

2019:
I can’t – I’m going to work.

Hot day at Woodbine Beach – Toronto, Ontario, 2011

What happened last time you got drunk?

2009:
i don’t remember. LOL
it’s called being drunkkkkk. geez. XD

2019:
I threw up during my three-stop winery tour back in September this year. I was ACTUALLY intoxicated, unlike Flora in 2009 who would’ve had no opportunity to consume any kind of alcohol.

Summer at Centre Island – Toronto, Ontario, 2012

If you could change one thing this year about your life would you?

2009:
i guess. the REALLYYY minor things i guess. cause i’m afraid changing the bigger scheme of things won’t lead me to where i am right now.

2019:
Same, 15-year-old Flora, same.

Red maple leaf on school campus – London, Ontario, 2013

In 2009, 15-year-old Flora was a sad girl. In 2019, 25-year-old Flora is still a sad girl, but with more life experience. In 2009 I was tired and felt weighed down by everything and nothing in particular. Now at the end of 2019, I still cry a lot, but instead of growing increasingly weary, I grew out of it.

First 10K run – Toronto, Ontario, 2014

During the past decade, I cried at just about anywhere — from the top of a mountain to inside a spin class when the instructor screamed at us that “competition is a thief of joy.” When I wasn’t crying, I was laughing loudly between the aisles of Walmart or while crossing the street. I’ve taken buses from the first stop to the last for fun, and have thrown up in a public trashcan in Chicago because of some bad basil.

Sunrise at a hackathon in George Brown College – Toronto, Ontario, 2015

Some highlights of my activities while being a sad girl

I ran two 10K races, completed a manuscript for a novel, and learned Korean by watching too much television. I graduated from university twice, learned to cook better, and travelled to places that are all beautiful in different ways. I memorized song lyrics, listened to a lot of true crime podcasts, and fell asleep in many strangers’ cars.

Hallasan in June – Jeju, South Korea, 2016

I hiked mountains too tall for my stamina, slept on the floor at two hackathons, and took long walks on the beach on my own. I became a musical snob, traded arcade tickets for fake pearl earrings, and took up too many hobbies to count.

Cute streets in old Quebec – Quebec City, Quebec, 2017

I didn’t make it onto any “Top 20 under 20” list or solve a great problem. I didn’t become a doctor or an amazing, popular artist. There are people I owe apologies to and I harbour a lot of regrets for all the people who only ever got to see my nasty side. I also have many thanks to give, for the overwhelming amount of praise, guidance, and support I have received in this decade of growing pains.

Drive along Highway 1 – Near Big Sur, California, 2018

At the end of it, I ended up in this place, where I am finally unabashedly myself. And it is exactly in this place where I will welcome new dreams, new goals, and a whole new decade of being a sad girl.

After crying when I got to the summit of Balanced Rock – Lake Placid, New York, 2019

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