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Ashley Who?

Last week I discovered the SiriusXM Pop2K radio station, and, after overcoming the initial shock that songs from my teenage years are now old enough to have a dedicated radio station that is not current hits, I’ve started listening primarily to it while driving. Admittedly, part of the reason I’ve suddenly become enraptured with Avril Lavigne’s “Complicated” and BeyoncĂ©’s “Crazy in Love” again is that Pop2K is number seven on my radio pre-sets, and that extra touch to get back to the screen featuring pre-sets one through six just seems like too much trouble most of the time.

However, the truer reason is that lately I’ve found myself full of nostalgia for my teenage years. It’s a rather confusing phenomenon since my teenage years weren’t that amazing. Don’t get me wrong, they had their advantages, most notably a size zero figure and frequent Abercrombie & Fitch shopping sprees courtesy of my mom’s credit card, but they weren’t the halcyon days my mind seems determined to remember them as. Why then this sudden longing for them?

Probably because teenagers are in the midst of discovering who they are, and ten years later I’m finding myself in the same position again. Between receiving a life-altering diagnosis, getting married, changing religions, and entering my late twenties, I’m once again questioning who I am, and this time I’m coming to terms with the fact that identity isn’t something you find once but something that continues to evolve over time. How do you evolve without losing the essence of who you are? That’s what I’m trying to decide.

Bridal photo taken by Jocelyn Carnation



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