one year

A year ago, while in the haze of post-graduation adjustments, I decided I wanted to start blogging again, and The Last Day in August was born. Though I was working full time, I felt like something was missing — and I thought blogging, something I’d done on and off for the past five years, might fill that gap. 

A lot changed in my transition from student to (mostly) self-sufficient adult. Not everything survived. Friendships changed. Some dissolved, some evloved. My three-year relationship came to an end.  Other things grew — like my blog. I can’t help but wonder (I say in my best Carrie Bradshaw voice), would the latter still be here if the former had carried on? I’m not so sure.

I started this blog thinking it would be a mix of lifestyle and living in New York, with the occasional outfit and makeup post thrown into the mix. And in the beginning it was. I even shared this blog, publicly, on Instagram and Facebook — something I had never done before for fear of judgment and ridicule. (It’s worth noting that I’ve endured neither of these things — only support). I’ll admit, I had the occasional visions of grandeur, imagining myself deep in the blogging world, writing about fashion and life as a twenty-something in the city. 

And then I realized, I didn’t want to put in the social media work necessary to grow an audience and build a following. 

I just wanted to write. 

Maybe I’d share photos on occasion, and document memories, but from an innate desire within myself and not for a particular audience. 

Admitting that to myself was strange at first after thinking I could build my blog into something bigger. And then, it was a relief. Yes, it meant that not many people read this blog. But it also meant that the only impetus to post was my own interest in sharing, or desire to write. I began to explore the personal essay branch of blogging in a way I never had in the past. (This might not align with the mysterious nature I should carry as a Scorpio, but it does align with the emotional side of me I’ve come to embrace). I began writing about heartbreak and change and the city I loved. I never imagined I would write about my ex in a public place, albeit in broad strokes, or be so vulnerable on the internet. But in the way it so often does, addressing insecurities and times of difficulty has actually made me more confident as I’ve gone through them. I’ve grown as a person, and, I believe, too as a writer. 

Going through these transitions in subject matter made me question what was the point of a blog when I often journaled about the same topics. For me, at least, my blog is where I attempt to make sense of both the specific occasions and broader themes I journal about. The public nature of a website keeps me honest, and holds me accountable. At the very least, if the content of my conclusions are lacking, I can at least put forth the best craft I am capable of.  

Now that I’ve reached a year of this little corner of the internet, I’ve been questioning what’s next for my blog. Will I ever return to my beauty-loving roots? Will I continue on navel-gazing even when the personal essay has been decreed dead several times over? Will I post about my favorite places in the city? Will I take the meta route and write more about writing? I don’t know the answers to all of these questions yet. Only that for now, I’ll continue writing here. I’d like to start bringing my individual experiences into larger conversations, pushing myself to think more critically and write more thoughtfully. As much as I’ve grown and changed in the last year, as an individual and a writer, my blog has too. And I imagine, another year down the line, that will continue to be the case. 

fifth time's the charm

This is not my first blog, neither my second, nor even my third. If I'm not mistaken, this is my fifth blog. From the age of 13 to 17 I dabbled around with blogging, daydreaming of being the next Style Rookie. (Tangential story: I ran into her [Tavi] at a salon and was reminded once again that we are in fact the same age). Needless to say, this did not happen. It wasn't until I started a beauty blog called Lovely Notions in 2013 that I began to take blogging more seriously. I even embraced the tutorial life and took a shot at YouTube videos (which are now on private to avoid embarrassment in the form of awkward voiceovers and an odd predilection to talk too much about Florida weather). 

And then, during my freshman year of college, my obsession with beauty dwindled. So, in what I thought was a grown-up move, I left my and got a self-hosted WordPress site which became A Write Through Life, my first endeavor at a "lifestyle" blog. My main intent with this particular endeavor was to track my travels abroad and use it as more of a diary, of sorts. And then in July 2016, my slowed posting turned into a total halt. I stopped posting altogether. While I didn't fall out of love with blogging, I did run out of time and, honestly, motivation. I was about to enter my senior year of college and was juggling my internship with competitive swimming and the ever-stressful job search. 

This is not a particularly relevant photo but I feel like it captures a certain feeling of summer.

This is not a particularly relevant photo but I feel like it captures a certain feeling of summer.

Now, about one year since my last blog post, I'm itching to start blogging again. I have neither swimming nor school to worry about, and am fortunate to have a job I really enjoy. But even with that, something has felt missing. And noticing this lack, above all, was what made me realize I wanted to start another blog for me. I'm not setting out to be the next Man Repeller (though I'll always love Leandra and the whole crew) but I am setting out to document some rambling thoughts, and  chat with some likeminded people. 

Sure, I've heard people say blogging isn't what it used to be. There are pitfalls and negatives and the temptation to dial back authenticity in the pursuit of influencer status. But even with these quote unquote negatives, I believe the positivity that comes from engaged communities, like those in the comments of some of my favorite blogs, far outweigh the negatives or criticism the industry has garnered in recent years. 

And so here I am again, on the last day in August, baring my soul to a small corner of the internet (read: very small corner) through this fifth, and likely final, blog.