today marks four years since my first post on this blog and with every year that passes, part of me is i'm amazed that i've managed to keep it up for so long.
my ambitions and future aims have waxed and waned in the two years since i graduated and moved back to manchester, but one thing remains the same, and it's best summed up by this quote from my review of lorde's gig in 2017 that i stumbled across while trying to find some ~inspiration~ for this post (yes i re-read my old blog posts, the truest sign that i really need to Get A Life):
"i wouldn't wish it on anyone, but i think to truly understand music in the way i do, to love it with your whole entire being, to have nothing else to live for, tying your sense of identity to a particular band or artist, you have to reach the point of no return. when i feel like i won't make it through the night, music is my only escape."
to say the last two years have been testing is an understatement. in no particular order, i lost my best friend, my nana - who always encouraged me to follow my dream of becoming a writer - and have endured more job rejections than i can count, which is why that quote continues to resonate with me while i'm Going Thru It.
while it's true that in the last few months, something shifted - perhaps due to my work with vibbidi, which was essentially my Dream Job - and i found myself imbued with a sense of self belief i've never had before, i'm back in that dark place where i start doubting my own abilities and wondering if writing is really what i'm Meant To Do.
however, after a string of dreadful interviews for digital marketing apprenticeships that my heart truly wasn't in, i've found myself with a renewed sense of purpose and will continue to pursue as many writing jobs as possible.
i also made the somewhat drastic decision to move back to london at the start of next year, assuming i don't find a Proper Job in the next four months. it wasn't an easy decision to make, but it's no longer about choice; if i'm serious about making this happen, i have to go where the jobs are.
i first pitched the idea to my parents back in june and though they initially seemed reluctant, once i explained that i'd have more chance of finding an internship or freelance work in the capital, they seemed to understand why i wanted to make such a big move for the second time.
i'm looking at it as the absolute last resort, but providing they're still on board with the idea, i really think the prospect of a ~new beginning~ and having to fend for myself again will motivate me to find whatever work i can to make my dream of a full-time, paid writing job a reality.
in the meantime though, i've been taking a moment to reflect on all the success this blog has brought me, from all the positive responses to my writing from rising artists like paige cavell and cxloe to actual lily allen re-tweeting me, and of course vibbidi.
as i said earlier, the night i skyped with them and got offered the job might just be the happiest moment of my ~professional~ life and something i'll never forget, so losing that was a devastating blow. however, it cemented that writing about music is the only thing i'm truly passionate about, though i realise now that doing it in my own way is crucial for me to enjoy it.
of course every online publication has a certain tone of voice that writers are expected to stick to but i'm determined to make whatever i write sound more like me from now on. i spent too long worrying about what prospective employers and editors would think of me, whether i was too intense and passionate or not enthusiastic enough, but the reality is that if they don't like how i write, there will be others out there who do.
it's not all bad though; seeing one of my favourite youtube people lucy wood go from losing her job at the iconic teen magazine sugarscape - their one direction coverage is always in my heart - to making a living from creating videos online shows that redundancy isn't the end of the world.
though i'm still terrified about not just my own future but that of the planet as a whole, this blog has remained one of the only consistent features in my life. it shouldn't really come as a surprise that i've kept it up for so long because it's the one thing that's kept me alive, and that has to count for something, right?
so while my peers are buying houses and popping out babies like there's no tomorrow, i'm finally at peace with the fact that i've never wanted these things and don't feel the need to compare myself just because i haven't achieved any of the traditional markers of Adulthood.
my goals and ambitions are just as valid as a someone who dreams of owning a four-bed new build and putting a pavé diamond on their ring finger, and i won't stop until i achieve them, even if it takes me another five, ten or fifteen years.
one thing is for certain though: this blog will always be important to me as it serves as a reminder of how far i've come and where i'm going next.