To think I was a mere 12 years of age when I discovered this unfamiliar online portal that allowed me to interact with the world. I knew nothing about writing decent content or how to interact with other users. Social media was fresh communication for me – my friends had just started getting the hang of Facebook at the time, and even that was a far stretch for a group of twelve-year-old’s. The internet and I have grown up together, seen each other’s ups and downs and learned the ways of society through a computer screen, ever since I invented Sincerely, E seven years ago. We have experienced an awful lot together. Especially the growth of myself, not just as a writer, but as a person trying to find themselves after being lost for so long.
At 15-years-old, I had landed myself in Sydney working for DOLLY Magazine – writing articles, running outfit errands around the city and accompanying photographers on their shoots. It was every teenage girl’s fantasy, and I was living it. My dream of being a professional writer was slowly coming to life – my blog was successful, followers were growing by the minute, and I was recognised nation-wide for writing about what I loved – something I never thought would bring me where it has today.
I have spent so much time during the last few years feeling unappreciative of what I had done. I travelled the world, achieved my goals and lived with a heart full of love, and yet I still managed to feel disappointed about my life not working out how I thought it would. The dreams I pictured as a 16-year-old high school student are further away than I had planned, but that does not mean they are completely unreachable.
There is apart of me that says I reached my peak too early. I received so much praise and attention for my work as a blogger and writer at a such a young age, that I felt I had to work up to this huge expectation I had set upon myself. Since then, I have basically been MIA from that life, completely erasing any joy I had for creative writing from my hobbies and only blogging when I had something worth saying – which, honestly, was not often. It was as if I burnt out early – I couldn’t handle the pressure of being better, overstepping every accomplishment I had made already just to be good at something. Flicking through the newspaper articles with headlines that read “National recognition for pint-sized blogger” and “Local teen blogs with the stars” are something that I am 110% proud of. But, I am 19-years-old now – was I supposed to have accomplished something else, something bigger than that by now?
By no means am I disappointed in what I achieved, being so young. I’m nothing but grateful for the support I gained at the time – without it, everything I had done would have been impossible. The person I look up to now and aspire to work towards, and work harder than, is 15-year-old me. She was on fire, with gratitude, hope and admiration flowing from her heart, and dreams that would not dare to be crushed by anyone.
As these words roll out of me too fast to keep up with on the keyboard, I admire my letters of inspiration – a quote that says ‘you did not wake up today to be mediocre’, a note from my old English teacher that reads, “I have no doubt that in the future I’ll be reading about the accomplishments of Ellie Simpson – as a model, a writer, a blogger, a make-up artist – who knows. Reach for your dreams”. I am still unsure as to what those dreams are, but they are almost definitely close by.
After staring at a blank computer screen for half an hour with nothing to tell, I’ve found everything I ever wanted to say.