As the sunlight peeps through my blinds, I slowly pry my eyes open and stretch out, eager to start the day. That’s when it dawned on me, it was the last week of 2017.
This year has been an extremely emotionally draining one and honestly, I’m really looking forward to 2018. But I also had a lot of great memories this year that changed my life. As I sat down to create my annual “year in my life” video, I realized just how much being a fangirl, and embracing that label, has helped me this year. It changed my life.
So if you’re still tiptoeing the edge, unsure whether to embrace your quirky fangirling, here are 5 reasons why you should take the jump.
5 WAYS EMBRACING THE FANGIRL LIFE CHANGED MY LIFE
1. It’s shown me my ‘families’
An old wise man once told me “family don’t end with blood.
When Linkin Park’s lead singer Chester Bennington suddenly passed away by suicide, I was absolutely heartbroken. His death hit me really hard but with the help of the Linkin Park family, I’m still here. The unity that happened among Linkin Park fans worldwide was utterly breathtaking. It was comforting to know that I wasn’t the only one mourning the loss of someone who changed my life but I’ve never met before.
And similarly, the Supernatural community, despite its fandom wank, is truly a family. When I first joined a couple of Supernatural Facebook groups, I didn’t know what to expect. Certainly not the love and support I received from everyone. Many fans would share personal stories from their lives. These Facebook groups quickly became not only a way for me to discuss freely and obsessively about a TV show that I loved but it also became a place where I went to when I needed some guidance on specific life decisions.
If the book “Family Don’t End With Blood” doesn’t convince you that family can be found within a fandom I don’t know what will.
2. It’s helped open up my mind
When you jump from being a simple fan to a fangirl, it’s almost like packing your bags and moving to a big city. You’re no longer with people you know and love. Instead, you find yourself around people with different upbringings and life experiences.
But if you pause to pay attention to these different perspectives, they can help you better understand the human psyche.
3. It’s given me a niche for my blog
This one goes without saying. I recently rebranded my blog to focus on writing about different fandoms. Before this change, I was half travel blog half lifestyle. But I was struggling. I didn’t know what to write nor did I really enjoy writing. That’s why I decided to ultimately rebrand.
4. It’s given me structure for how I live my life
Anyone who’s a sports fan can relate to this right? Let me tell you a little secret: Don’t try talking to a sports fan when their team is playing. Don’t plan anything while their team is playing. If you do, don’t expect to have their full attention and they will most likely, no, definitely, keep checking their phone.
5. It’s given me a reason to always keep fighting
Without trying to sound like a broken record, it’s nice to know that you’re not the only person in this world struggling. Logically you know, but emotionally, it can feel like you’re floating above everyone just trying to fight your way down to join them. Fangirling has really helped keep me grounded. Embracing it rather than feel shame by it has really changed my life. I now shamelessly follow my favorite actors, musicians, athletes on social media, finding comfort in their candid posts as they share their personal struggles with all of us.
So despite all the gripes and complaints about social media, I’m grateful for it. Social media reminds me daily that I’m not alone in my fight and it’s comforting to know I’m not the only one struggling. That there are people ‘better than me’ also fighting.
Everyone is fighting their own demons no matter how successful they are and if they can keep pushing on, then so can I.
My favorite thing though since starting this new ‘lifestyle’ is the fact that now, I always have a reason to keep looking forward rather than back. New music, exciting games, lifelong experiences! This excitement for the future is something I’ve never really experienced before. I have fandoms to thank for this.
It’s not something to be ashamed about and as cliché, as it may sound, embracing it may set you free. It changed my life. Confused on where to start?
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How has becoming a fan of something changed your life? I would love to read your stories in the comments below.