This is a random thought that came to mind this afternoon while I was filing my taxes.
I was bored out of my mind and I decided to jump on Facebook for some good old doom scrolling, which was immediately interrupted by the algorithm showing me a picture of myself from 15 years ago.
I was immediately hit by nostalgia, but in a bad way.
I started thinking about that time when I was still trying to find my “call”, I looked at my long hair and how I looked good, and started feeling sorry for going bald so early. I noticed how thin and slender I was, instead of the somewhat skinny-fat version of what it is I am now. I looked at my smile, at the people around me, at lost friends, at forgotten memories and everything around those.
And then my mind started wondering “were my parents ever exposed to something like this?”
I don’t know why I started thinking about that, but I remembered those very rare occasions in which my family would clean the attic, or go through some old boxes and finding old black and white pictures of themselves in school, or of their grandparents, and how those moments turned into some fond trips down memory lane.
And then I realized how those “accidents”, stumbling upon old forgotten pictures, weren’t really accidental. You had to willingly go through old pile of boxes, knowing that in there, somewhere, you might find an old photo book, or some blurred Polaroids. At least, you were partially aware of the possibility.
Us millennials, and whomever grew up with or alongside the internet during the age of social media, don’t have much control on that.
We are somewhat forced to relieve those memories, getting exposed to shards of a past life, probably at a time in which we’re not mentally prepare for.
We all heard stories of people getting pictures of their parents funerals, or a lost loved one, shoved directly into their feed because they simply forgot to disable that feature. It’s honestly brutal.
Our brain doesn’t work well that way. We need to forget, we need to let past experiences, good or bad, stay in the past, and we need to live in the present and focus on the future.
Constantly relieving the past, always sharing and getting exposed to old memories unwillingly, is not healthy.
What was that old saying? Time heals all wounds? How can that be true if I keep getting shoved back in time, finding myself thinking at all the wrong choices, mistakes, missed opportunities, and at how “things were better back then”?