Despite all the forward-thinking techy trends that are constantly abuzz, we seem to retain an obsession with nostalgic snap shots of the past.
We make #ThrowBackThursday posts on social media so we can display old pictures of ourselves as children being dysfunctional and wearing too much denim. And when we don’t have old pictures, we just apply desaturating filters and edit our iPhone photos in an attempt to create the same sense of nostalgia.
We love every other decade but our own. ’70s, ’80s, or ’90s, it doesn’t matter””if you slap a decade theme on any party or social gathering, people break out the costumes. We may not be on top of the trends of our own decade, but at least we can pretend we would have totally “fit in” back then.
We love old clothes. Goodwill is considered a gold mine. But only those willing to dig through that rack for the coveted faded t-shirt from 1996 with a perfectly retro logo get rich. Students proudly wear their dad’s vintage Sub-T sweatshirt around campus or occasionally break out a fanny pack to make the statement, “Hey, I’m bringing these back.”
We love to indulge ourselves a look into our pasts. People often refer to the past as a simpler time. Maybe we are hoping that by reminiscing in those memories or by pretending to be a part of another era, that we will find a simple moment in the midst of our complicated present day.
Those times may have seemed less complicated on account of fewer lawsuits, less seatbelt wearing and no place for something such as a gluten-free menu. But those decades had worries and complications of their own.
That picture of you from 1995 involving something Fisher Price might have been taken while the country was still in shock about the Oklahoma City bombing. That picture of your parents wedding in the 80’s you posted for their anniversary was snapped in a world that feared nuclear war between the U.S. and the Soviet Union.
I realize this could be a depressing way to look at old memories. Don’t let the bad things that are always happening in the world overshadow the good in those captured moments, but don’t forget to find the good in the present day either.
I love a good #TBT as much as the next instagrammer, but don’t get caught up in wishing you could still get away with that awkward haircut. Instead, embrace the memory and then come back to the present–live in all the awkwardness or dysfunctional memories that today offers.
Because even though we love dressing up like we lived in those simplier times, I bet if you stepped into that perfectly filtered photo and talked to your younger self, you’d hear yourself making some of the same complaints about your mom that you did today.