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Sunday, August 27, 2023

Remembering?

Google has announced that they will be deleting accounts which have been inactive for more than two years.

This prompted me to log in to some of my old accounts to make sure there's nothing in there I wouldn't want to lose forever.

I came across a years-old email from Facebook that was basically a notification that I had received a DM from someone. The email had a copy of the DM in it.

It was a correspondence from someone who I don't speak to anymore. I was probably 19 or 20 when I received it. Strangely enough, of all of the DMs, this was one that encapsulated everything that I probably should have stayed the hell away from.

The first half of the message was a profession of love to me, essentially a marriage proposal, and a formal invitation to join an existing relationship as a "third".

It was sickly-sweet and over-the-top, the exact kind of thing that would have made 19/20-year-old me swoon.

The second half of the message was a calculated judgement on something I had mentioned in an online journal a few months beforehand - that I had used marijuana and drank alcohol. It's clear this part of the message was meant to make me feel guilty, and to let me know that if I ever chose to partake in either of those things again, that I would be effectively cut off and discarded.

The dissonance between the two parts of the message were chilling.

When I logged onto this old email account, I didn't go looking for this type of thing, because as much as I like to look back upon the past, this wasn't a particularly nice part of it that I might like to think about. But since I stumbled upon it anyway, it got me thinking.

Throughout the years when I thought about the things that happened at this period in my life, I often wondered if I was dramaticizing it a bit, or blowing things out of proporation. Because even when I spoke about what happened from memory, it seemed like a lot, like stranger-than-fiction kind of stuff. However, seeing some written proof of something sent to me like this gave me chills. Not only wasn't I exaggerating it, but it was perhaps even worse than I gave it credit for.

Reading this also reinforced what I have mentioned before, that looking back on things is strangely helpful, if only because I can see specifically how I've grown and changed, and how I can be reassured that I am not making the same mistakes as I always have.

I am worlds apart from the person I was at that time. I know now that if I cringe and flinch at who I was before, that's a sign of growth.