Recently, I discovered that I have a flash drive that contains most of my old photographs – most of which I thought they got lost. But there they were. When I took a look at the pictures, I was a little embarrassed. I had to make some selection since the flash disk had thousands of images from ages and ages, most of them unsorted.
But I was also a little anxious since I knew that a lot of hidden information about me was in those photos. There were photos that I did not even know existed. Pictures from my childhood photoshoots were also there, and most of them made me smile while others made me cringe.
Other photos brought about a sense of nostalgia and others made me feel glad that time of my life had passed. Others even made me a little sad over an experience I had once. Some made me proud of the person I was then and the person I am today.
It is a weird thing to go through old pictures of my past. The feeling is similar to that of looking through the window into memory from your past. Back at the time, seeing my wardrobe selection, who my friends were, the individuals I desired, how I expressed my feelings, and what I saw essential to me during that time.
I have been avoiding looking back at my past for some time because when I look at an old photo, I get a weird mood that sometimes makes me feel sad of what was over or what I lost. However, seeing them this time was quite lovely. I was somehow emotional, but I don’t think anything else could be anticipated. I kept smiling through the whole period.
The amount of emotions and memories an old photo can bring about is unbelievable. But as they say, a photo carries thousands of words and feelings. Going through the pictures, particularly those from my teenage years, crowded me with mixed sadness and joy because I was and what I was going through.
My adolescent years were not that easy, so I understood that what was coming in the future was not honey and butter. Most of the things I did during my teen years were mainly to please other people. However, I understand that I am a strong person and would eventually turn out to be stronger.
Let us keep the emotional stuff aside. I also realized other aspects when I was looking at my old photos – I was more skinny. I was nearly underweight at a particular time, and now I am not. And I am okay with that. I remember crying because my parents refused to buy me the clothes I thought would make me look great at the time. By seeing my old pictures, I realized that something was weirdly not okay with the way I saw myself. I was not looking bad as I thought, and even if I did, I still looked good and valuable.
I have also come across some friends and family members telling me I have added weight and proposing various ways to lose it again. However, when I look at an old photo, I learn a lot about how to accept my body and look. And I now love myself the way I am. At first, it was horrible to see the skinny person I was, but now I am completely fine with it since I love how I look. Hurray, for improvement!
Even if I was a shy person who did not enjoy attention in any way, I was never cool sufficiently for the “cool peers”, I was still strong to remain myself. I barely knew anything about fashion, and I can even remember myself laughing after seeing a girl and a boy wearing a similar t-shirt in class before learning that it was among the “cool” brands. I had to choose between not giving in and being me or falling for the pressure. I decided to remain myself. That is one of the moments in my life that make me proud of who I have been. Avoiding peer pressure have shaped who I was and who I have become today, and the old photos reminded me of that.
The pictures reminded me of the years when I was building my current identity. They tell me of the of my bravery since I dared to be different from others and I did not like attention. It was more important for me to be myself than the attention it would create. My teenage photos always inspire my current-self. The pictures made me even ask myself what the teen version of me would do during various situations.
Now I am a grown-up, but I am still a teen.
To conclude, I would like to motivate you to look at your old photos. They will bring out some fascinating reflections, feelings, wonders, and memories