At first, I was going to continue the Heartstomping Series…but then I figured that’d be nice to do that after Valentine’s Day because that’s simply poetic justice in its own way.
Then I was going to post a bit of a deeper-thoughts rant about girls these days, but…nothing came.
Then I realised – hey, it’s Thursday.
In the world of the interwebs, Thursdays are the day of the Throwback. The day when you dig something out of the dusty photo albums from the days when those were actually books…and you post it, in all its embarrassing nostalgic glory, for the world to see. And since it’s 100% authentic vintage, you don’t need a fancy filter for it. (Though some people seem to think even an actual old photograph needs a filter to look even more like an old photograph…)
This actually does have a point, but for now I’m going to ask you to hold that thought while I go back in time to a story of sisterhood. (Don’t worry – it’ll all come together.)
Anyone who knows me will know that I am something of a makeup junkie. In total disclosure, I’ve been fooling around with makeup since before I can actually remember. No joke. My first encounter with beauty products was at the tender age of two. My oldest sister was supposed to be watching me at the time but was evidently not, as I managed to get into our mother’s bathroom and smear an entire tub of some very expensive night cream all over the walls and mirror. Literally. Now, my oldest sister doesn’t have a mean bone in her body, but she does have a mind that remembers the best and worst of what the rest of the brood has made her go through. Let’s just say she still hasn’t entirely forgiven me for that.
Fast forward many years and here I am today – still playing with makeup, but in a less…abstract way. Some of you who met me within the last five years or so will know me as somebody who takes pride in the fact that she can put on her entire everyday face in seven minutes. And that usually ends up looking something like this:
Most of you who know me from my wayward adolescent years can join me in a moment of nostalgic chagrin. Adolescence is a time of self-discovery. We don’t really know who we are (and anyone who claims to is either lying or really weird) and we’re trying to figure that out in the midst of teenage angst and growing pains. And since we don’t know at that age how to deal with it, we rebel when things don’t go the way we want. Now, I don’t know what your rebellions were like, but mine involved heavy metal.
From listening to the music to playing it to dressing like I was already a rock star, I went all-out when it came to being a metalhead. I listened to just about everything out there in the genre as a whole, but I will admit that I had a particular propensity towards Scandinavian (especially death/black/thrash/symphonic/progressive) metal. And with looking like a Scandinavian shredder came…doing my makeup like one.
I’m pretty sure my mother’s blood pressure got a little higher when she saw me in thick black eyeliner and goopy mascara for the first time, and I’m pretty sure I managed to add more than a few grey hairs to my dad’s head that morning as well. Though, come to think of it, perhaps the “Piece of Mind” Iron Maiden t-shirt I’d gotten from my brother for Christmas that year didn’t really help. Neither did the Children of Bodom grim reaper tees that followed, come to think of it…
Whatever their initial reaction was, not much was said about my preferred look, even as it progressed towards urban-bohemian-grungecore (lots of black lacy peasant blouses with torn denims and Cleopatra-esque eyeliner, topped off by tons of studded, clunky hardware and a stormy countenance). In retrospect, I appreciate the fact that my parents let me stage my insurrection with little comment so far as looks were concerned. We fought about a lot of other things, of course, but at least we had an uneasy peace about how I dressed (most days, anyway).
As it is with most phases, I eventually outgrew it, but not before I had figured out a lot of things about myself while in the thick of it. The abridged version is that I learned how to be myself and express myself creatively, and eventually didn’t see the need to use my face as the canvas to do so.
In all honesty, I don’t have any pictures left of that particular phase, so for the whole photographic element of this particular throwback I had re-create it. And even then, it’s not the way it used to be. But that’s just because I’ve grown up a bit since then. Just remember, though – you asked for it, and I did what I could to deliver…