What to Read When You're Feeling a Little Lost

Nobody said that being a female millenial in college was going to be easy.  This is a point in our lives when it's normal to feel lost, unsure, and discouraged, especially when it seems as though many of your peers "have it together."  Perhaps you're choosing a major, about to graduate, deciding on a career, or making a big move.  Luckily enough, there are many female authors who have felt just as lost and struggled with the same issues that are all too inherent to being a young woman in a world of evolving expectations and judgements.  This weekend, or on your upcoming break, flip through some of these quick and easy reads to help remind yourself that, although all of our individual experiences are unique, a female bond exists that entertwines our efforts and stories together.

Joan Didion's Goodbye to All That

Joan Didion is known for being both a style and emotional icon who's confessional-style writing is raw and relatable.  In her essay Goodbye to All That, Didion tells her story of moving to (and eventually running away from) New York as a younger woman and the overwhelming depression that comes along with it.  She had a love-hate relationship with the city and describes the shallowness of the party scenes and the lovers, comparing herself to the girls around her, the promises that we all too often make ourselves, and a longing for her home in California.  Whether you have moved to a big city, dream of doing so, or have ever felt lost in a new environment, you'll be sure to relate.

Krisiti Coulter's Giving Up Alcohol Opened My Eyes to the Infuriating Truth About Why Women Drink

I recently read this article from Quartz and have not been able to stop thinking about it and suggest that every woman reads it.  Coulter discusses the time period after she became sober in which she realized how heavily our culture relies and drinkins and how many women use it as a crutch.  " Maybe all that wine is an Instagram filter for our own lives, so we don’t see how sallow and cracked they’ve become."  Of course, this doesn't go for all women but as we slowly transition to the real world and, for many of us, into careers that are unfortunately still dominated by men, the frustration we will experience may very well be overhwleming and trigger vices.

Roxane Gay's Girls, Girls, Girls

In a time where third-wave feminism is integral to our advancement in this world, Roxane Gay should be required reading.  I believe that this essay, however, is a good start and covers how the media is still not very intersectional and how many of us can feel forgotten when it fails to represent us.  "The desire for authentic representations of girlhood is like searching for water in a desert. It is a matter of survival, and also faith."

Cheryl Strayed's Wild

Perhaps you read this award-winning book or saw the movie already, but if you haven't, it's a must-read for your next break or even this coming summer.  And then, it's the perfect motivation for a subsequent adventure during that time off!  Strayed tells the tale of her mother passing, her stint with drug abuse, and her failed marriage - all of which led her on a trip to lose herself in order to find herself... as cliche as that may sound.  And this trip was not any glamerous trip - Strayed hiked over 1,000 miles of the Pacific Crest Trail, from the bottom of California, all the way to Washington.  Many couldn't believe that a woman was making this dangerous journey on her own and lugging the sized backpack she was.  "It was more dangerous for me to stay in the life I was living than it was to go, even though going took me into the wilderness alone," Strayed said in an interview.  Talk about badass.

Rupi Kaur's Milk and Honey

ICYMI, Rupi Kaur is the author of the piercing short-and-sweet poems with hand-drawn illustrations that you've seen all over Instagram.  Milk and Honey is her debut collection of feminist poems, originally self-published, and covers everything from love and heartbreak to what it means to be a woman and even sexual abuse.  In a simplistic way, Kaur's words cut deep and are ridden with emotion.