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Cultivating a Life of Messiness

I hope that wherever you are currently, you are enjoying your time on this planet–even if it seems to be “tainted” by stress or sadness or trouble.

As I’m writing this, I’m laying on my bed with a moss green face mask drying slowly on my face, an old and ragged blue plaid robe draped over me, clothes strewn all over the floor, papers and various books scattered across my desk and a coffee mug from this morning hap-hazardly placed on the edge of my dresser.

I say all of this to make a point.

I’m messy most of the time. I would actually call it a sort of quasi-messy mixed with calm recklessness because I still keep a planner, I pick up my room at least three times a week, I do laundry regularly and I wash dishes. I would like to clarify something: messy does not equate to dirty. In the quiet of a Tuesday night, I am normally too exhausted from school, work, extracurricular events, meetings, sisterhood events and the gym to bother with silly things like hanging clothes or organizing my books. Usually, I would scold myself about the condition of my room or the tangles in my hair–or even the dangerously out-of-hand situation with my bookbag. However, I’m starting to accept the messiness more and more as I grow older and become busier.

I am realizing that everything is not perfect all the time. My room will not look like a photoshopped, aesthetically pleasing, Instagram-worthy picture 24/7. I will not have a perfect outfit or perfect hair all the time. It is okay to embrace the messiness of my hair because it saves me twenty minutes and allows me to savor those minutes of sleep before my 8 A.M. class. It is okay to have papers sticking out of my notebook or tabs opened on my computer to remind me to do things. It is okay to show up somewhere covered in sweat after a zumba class. It is okay to feel content while not wearing makeup. It is okay to cry and not be ashamed to walk around with puffy eyes. It is okay to be complicated in every sense of the word.

My life is not meant to be aesthetically pleasing: it is meant to be lived. My life is meant to be stretched to its limits, pushed past the comfort zone, scraped, bruised and beaten; yet beautiful, powerful, silly, full of laughter, love and unrelenting kindness towards other inhabitants of this planet. During all of that living, it can be hard to maintain a picturesque image.

This is okay. Messiness is okay.  

Messy is raw and real. Life is messy, people are messy and unkempt in their natural state. This is more than okay, it is an honesty that should bring comfort. Messy is alive and breathing with a pulse and a fire burning inside of you.

Everyday I’m learning to embrace my messy head and make sense of the messy thoughts that fly around it. It is okay to not be all-there all-the-time. It is okay to take up space and breathe deeply and not worry about how you’re appearing to the outside world. “Pretty”, “neat”, “polished” or “beautiful” is not the rent I pay to take up space in this world. Personally, I would much rather be known for the good I did and the people I helped than the way I perfectly arranged my coffee in the morning to take a VSCO-worthy picture.

Life is not always about having it together, sometimes it is about the messiness. 

So, take a moment and realize what I’ve realized: it’s A-OK to be messy, to not know what tomorrow will hold and to not know where your favorite pair of leggings are. Take a breath in and focus on the more important things in life–like your happiness and your family and the things you’re accomplishing. 

Collegiettes, it’s okay to not have it totally together right now–it’s all apart of the journey. So, embrace the messy, embrace the un-organized and embrace YOU.

“Life should not be a journey to the grave with the intention of arriving safely in a pretty and well preserved body, but rather to skid in broadside in a cloud of smoke, thoroughly used up, totally worn out, and loudly proclaiming “Wow! What a Ride!”

    -Hunter S. Thompson


i'm the opposite of a moderate, immaculately polished with the spirit of a hustler and the swagger of a college kid
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