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Monday, April 20, 2009

Soulages

I have this theory that everyone's soul is a certain age. Some people are bored in grade school because they're supposed to be thirty-eight. Some people are tortured by office jobs because they have the spirit of eleven-year-olds. My prom date is a fifty-five-year-old man trapped in an eighteen-year-old's body. There's no shame in being a young soul; my best friend, Jess, is ridiculously smart and in most ways very mature, but her soulage is about six. And there's nothing frumpy about having an old soul; my friend, Sarah Keeler, is vivacious and youthful, but her soul is an older adult. (Here's an interesting side note: I googled "soulage" to see if I did, in fact, make that word up. It's apparently the first-person singular present indicative form of the French word soulager, which means, more or less, "to relieve.") What age is your soul?

I think mine is fourteen. Fourteen-year-olds are on the barrier between middle school and high school, waiting for the next thing to start. They're in between little girl and grown woman, displaying some qualities of both, physically and mentally. They're accused of being self-absorbed, but that's really not true-- they just feel things so deeply and everything matters to them. They're on a constant quest to understand the world, and they long to be accepted as real people with real thoughts. They feel like there are opposing forces acting upon them at all times, and they're really never relaxed, despite how it looks.

I started keeping a diary when I was fourteen. I funneled every ounce of my hyperactive emotion into hundreds of pages, forming analytical lists about the guy I was obsessed with, coming up with one-word, all-telling nicknames for every important character in my life, practicing third person and present tense and dramaturgy. For years, I narrated my life in Bradley Hand ITC. And although I was miserable at that time in every possible way-- stressed, confused, sad and angry-- I felt so very, purely myself. My soul is fourteen. My soul is part slacker, part nervous wreck, pouring over a hot pink livejournal in an attempt to solve the riddle of myself.

This sounds like a video to me. Maybe I'll make it one, if you guys will promise to make video responses. In other youtubely news, the "italktosnakes Throwdown" is being BOMBARDED with sporm. I think even the porn sites are yelling at me for not posting anything in three weeks. They're right. I know. Oh, and I continue my terrible habit of developing crushes on strangers on the internet.

Sexy: Let's face it: video bloggers. I like a guy who knows his way around editing software.
Unsexy: "Frosted tips." Ew, guys. Keep the yellow hair dye away from your scraggily, over-gelled man 'do.

Weight: 135
Chipotle burritos this year: 12
Subscribers: 15,349
Days left of high school: 25

Bye, guys! See you tomorrow. <3

39 comments:

Anonymous said...

You're amazing. End of story.
(Sorry, I don't have anything constructive to say so I settled for a compliment. Savvy?)
:]

allyson said...

If you make a video about that, I promise to make one myself... even if it is the week of the musical and I'm stressed beyond believe. It doesn't matter, you will still meet my soul if you post that in a video.

Thank you for being who you are. =]

I've been a fan of yours for nearly two years, and I relate you you freakishly well. Thus, this brings me procrastination enjoyment on a daily basis.

You're another Jesus lovin', Potter lovin', obsessive personaility(in'?), writin', dreamin', singin' senior in a tiny school.

=]

Leah said...

It's annoying because you've already experienced your soul age as your actual age and I haven't, so I can't describe it as well. I don't know. Late twenties/early thirties? Meg Ryan romantic comedy age-- where I think I have everything figured out when actually I don't know anything, and I'm just waiting for that one last thing to fall into place and complete me.

Claire said...

When I saw your subscriber count, I was outraged for a second - why would 1,000 people unsubscribe from you, easily one of the most hilarious people on YouTube? But then I realized that it was probably a typo, considering the proximity of "4" to "5" on a keyboard. So I checked your channel and was happy to discover that, far from losing so many subscribers, you had actually gained 22 since yesterday. =)

-End pointless story-

Becka said...

My soul age? I don't know. I think it's swinging at the moment- sometimes, like today, it feels about 90, other times, I feel about four.

I'd settle for a nice, in the middle age, but I don't think I'll ever have one of those. I'm pretty sure I'm just a really, really grumpy, cynical child at heart.

trumpetplayingnerdfighter said...

My soulage is probably an average of 18, but I'm usually at one extreme (5ish) or the other (60+).


"Unsexy: Frosted tips."

Yes, thank you. There's a guy at my school my friends and I referred to as "Frosty Tips" for months because we didn't know his name. Then around Christmas he bleached his head so "Frosty the Snowman" became much more appropriate.

Kristina said...

I havent made a video in a long time either. It's concerning me.


I dont know where my soul lies. When I was a kid I felt like an adult trapped in a kids body, but now that I am grown up I feel like a kid trapped in an adult's body. I'm not sure where that leaves my soul.

Tessa said...

you're going to keep blogging after april is over, right? this has kinda become one of my favourite parts of each day.

Larangutang said...

I am a young soul 5 at the oldest lol. Don't get me wrong though I'm mature when need be. My best friend is such an old soul. He watches gameshows and complains about "kids these days" lol.

Driscoll said...

I think that my soulage is probably that of a 60 year old woman. I worry to much, I'm a bit cynical and I don't get alot of the things that young kids do thesse days. But overall I'm not a mean person and I'll bake you cookies for no reason at all. I'll say hi to every single person on the street just because they look nice. And I say "That girl was nice." about pretty much every girl that is. And I like to let them know it.

I';m like a little old grandma.

Catherine said...

I'm sure that my soulage is 14 also. I pretty much feel/felt exactly how you describe except i became incredibly nihilistic, a phase which i am still suffering the consequences of.
I wish I had narrated my life in Bradley Hand ICT. I may have felt better about myself if I had.

HeyLukey said...

im not sure what my soulage would be its properly something a bit older than i am now maybe like 25 just craving being out of university and wanting to settled down in a decent job knowing that my free time is mine and not filled with uni work

oh and loving todays Sexy as i defiantly know way around editing Softaware as im in my 3rd year studying Post Production (Editing for those who were not sure what that is) at university, and also learning the way of the video blog slowly

Maddy said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Maddy said...

I think my soulage is about twelve. While I do have my angsty teen moments, I generally have a very sunny, whimsical disposition much like that of a twelve year old.

Also, I just wanted to say how much I enjoy reading your blog. You are a wonderful writer and reading your blog is always one of the highlights of my day :)

Jesse said...

"Oh, and I continue my terrible habit of developing crushes on strangers on the internet."

I know all too well the afflictions of that curse. Just hate it when that happens.

Adam said...

i finally fit cleanly into the "sexy" category.
yes!

Sarah said...

I definitely believe that our internal ages rarely match our actual ages but I don't know that I'm convinced that they're mostly stagnant. On the contrary, I think a person's "soulage" or internal age can and should change as we learn and grow. That sounds very elementary school guidance counselor of me, but seriously. As we all try to make sense of the world and humanity, I think it can be dangerous to get stuck in a rut of any sort, including thinking you have to act a "certain age" all of the time. I have no idea if I'm making sense because Graham is blowing on my arm in an awkward way. Okay bye. You're pretty.

Anonymous said...

I quite enjoyed this post because I have also always wondered about how old people truly are in their hearts. My true age is probably either 13 or 14. I to also have a journal from that time and I was definitely not happy but when I read it I'm at times completely embarrassed by it and also wishing I was that girl again. She was focused, worked hard, had goals....she hadn't let the world's opinion of her come in and tell her dreams weren't possible.

Oh, and please make this entry into a video. I think that would be awesome : )

goldensnitch said...

I think I am 12 as I am very strange and do things I don't always know why, I still get mad over the tiniest things, and yet I can be insightful like most twelve-year-olds are. I enjoy it:)

A.J. James Brooks said...

I have always assumed I have an old soul, like Santa old, i have a natural calm that a lot of people lack until they are late into their lives. hmmm My belly is also similar to ST Nicks.... THIS JUST IN I AM SANTA CLAUS.... hmm yes I know it's April... what?

Natasha said...

I laughed at your frosted tips comment.
I completely agree.

Anonymous said...

I distinctly remember standing in my first garde class rehearsing for the Mother's Day show thinking, "I like being 6. I think it will be my favorite age and number." And that's what happened. While my teacher tried to coax little boys into singing "My Guy" as "My Mom," that's what I was thinking.

I remember having a lot of free time that week...

Raven Zoe said...

I promise to make a video response. It's a great video idea. And you're lovely. And I like that about you. haha

Sarah said...

Hayley, I love your writing; thank you for sharing it with us.

I have always thought that my soulage was about 65. I just feel like I relate better to that age group (this is sometimes problematic when you're actually in your 20s). Some of my interests and hobbies reflect this age, as does the way I approach my life and goals (sometimes). On good days, I feel a happiness/peace/appreciation of life that I see in a lot of older adults I know. But because I'm not 65, I don't have the knowledge/wisdom/experience that comes with it ... so I think part of my soul is definitely still 23 (my age), and is enjoying the worrying and wondering and exploring of this stage.

What did you do with your diary from when you were 14? I am always tempted to destroy mine, out of fear that someone will find it and discover what I mess I was (am) ... but I re-read part of mine last weekend, and I found it interesting to see what I felt and remember what I went through, and how that shaped who I am today...

Melissa Kendra said...

The crushed on strangers over the internet? Yeah. I do that too. It's probably not healthy, but damn, it's fun.

And I love the soul age thing. I really have no idea what mine would be, but I really want to find out now.

Marlena said...

After asking Leah and thinking about it, I think my soulage is 19. I'm a dramatic, hopeful, anxious, awkward, passionate teenager, yet I'm constantly searching for a way to be free and better and independent. So, 19.

But I agree with Sarah; I don't think soulages are concrete. I think they're able to change and adapt, not necessarily with our real ages, but with the experiences we have and how they teach us. Souls aren't as permanent as one age for eternity. They grow.

Emily said...

I love what you're saying about soulages. I think mine is around 5, when everything is exciting and being silly means being REALLY silly; when you put stuff on your head because it's fun and actually like it when people stare at you because you're dancing in public because you know you're having more fun than they are.

I mean, I'm turning 19 in a month and I feel like some sort of impostor. Surely, I can't be that old?

You should make a video about this. I'd definitely make a response. :]

Also, crushing on strangers over the internet? Really?
Yeah, I do that too...

x0brittx0 said...

have you stopped eating? it seems like you've stopped eating.

don't. i better see that burrito count go up by one tomorrow or else ...

MmM CyNtHiA, OpInAnDo said...

I'VE BEEN THINKING FOR A WHILE WHAT TO PUT IN YOUR BLOG...BUT I ONLY HAVE TO SAY:
I LOVE IT
HAYLEY URE THE COOLEST PERSON I KNOW^^ THX

Nicholas said...

I think my soulage is about 95. What I enjoy the most is lying on the grass somewhere, observing clouds. Or reading.
I sometimes feel like I want to do so much, but ultimately settle for a nap.
I am frightened when I think about how much time I have left and how I should spend it.

And I'd rather travel the world instead of working (that's a pensioner for you ;).

thealphabet said...

Everyone seems pretty old or young, or not really sure.

I am pretty sure my soulage is 43, maybe 42. The age where I feel like, as a woman, my life should have begun but hasn't, I feel old, and tired, and otherwise midlife-crisis-y all the time.

I am constantly being catalyzed and doing big things and then changing my mind, afraid of one direction.

I dropped out of college to go to circus school. I think that's a hell of a near 20 year old's midlife crisis.

But I know what you mean, about feeling everything, and it all being important. When something hurts, the physical ache can be unbearable.

But when it's good, I like to feel my body hum with joy, or the feel the heart swell, the crush-just-walked-into-the-room, hear-your-favorite-song heart swell.

To heart-swells! And soulages!

Corey

Hiba said...

Hayley, I wonder if you would consider publishing these blog posts as a book someday =) To me, it already sounds like the makings of a great new-generation novel. And I'm sure as hell you wouldn't have a tough time selling :D seeing as I've been hooked to your blog from the very first post!

Also, I've never been one to believe in star signs and things of that sort that dictate your personality or lifestyle or future etc...but your Soulage theory actually seems to trump star signs for me bigtime (no offense to any star sign followers!). It's tremendously intriguing ^_^.

I too kept a diary since I was fourteen and I found my feelings finally had a place they could discreetly inhabit. I can relate :).

Can't really tell what my Soulage is...I find it's definitely not as teenage as my body...but often fluctuates from really young to really old :P

goddess-of-ice said...

I think I have the soul of an 18 year old because up until that age I've felt I was older than that and now that I'm about to pass it by I feel like my maturity level is lower than it should be.

Catherine said...

I believe my soulage is right around the awkward age of the thirteen/fourteen year old. Just entering high school, trying to find out where you belong. I know I'm going to feel like that the rest of my life.

And do make a video because, a) you haven't made a video in ages, and b) their are many illiterate people who do not read your blogs who might also be intrigued by this idea.

And I promise to mke a video response. =)

Owl said...

I'm fourteen. And that was really interesting to read.

But I'm pretty sure my soul is ridiculously old.... which can become a little annoying. Be a little younger, soul!

Anonymous said...

In case it hasn't been mentioned yet, I want you to know that the verb "soulager" in French means "to alleviate". "Soulage" is a tense variation thereof. So basially I've been pronouncing it soo-lah-(hard Z)-ay. I cannot stop myself. But whatevs. You're just about the coolest person ever Hayley, and if we were several thousands of miles apart I'd definitely want to be good friends with you (if you'd let me, that is).

Anonymous said...

ahem weren't*

Anonymous said...

Fuck me, I didn't read the whole article where you end up mentioning that same thing. Fuckkk. Ignore my stupidity. lool

Anonymous said...

Very Interesting!
Thank You!