Let’s be honest; books, television, all of that stuff, are awesome. And recently, there have been a lot more of all of those for us teens. Vampire Diaries, Sherlock, that kind of thing. And books, too! Percy Jackson, Divergent, Uglies, the list goes on. And on. And on. It’s made for us to enjoy, to kick back after a long day of working, running between classes, and just…. relax. That’s what they were made for.
Then we got excited. People started categorizing themselves into ‘fandoms’ depending on what tv show or book you liked the most. Whovians, Sherlokians, Half-Bloods, Divergent, we call ourselves these, even though we aren’t Half-Blood or what-have-you. We’re us. And we’re losing us.
Don’t get me wrong, please. I love Percy Jackson, especially Son of Neptune, but we can’t obsess over it! It’s fine to love these things, but not to let them dwell on our thoughts day and night. You like Walking Dead? Fine! Enjoy it! Catch up on the weekends! But don’t let it turn you into a tv zombie. We have our lives, our stories to tell, and we are spending our time focusing on fictitious characters. Guess what? You’ve got friends and family, their lives are much more interesting and beautiful than Grover’s, or Triss’. We can’t trade our lives for the lives of people who don’t even feel.
Again, you can still like all of these things. That’s great, even, they were created for you to like! But you can’t let them have you! We can’t grow up and live our lives so focused on the make-believe stuff that we miss the real stuff. I know, I know. You can’t have the same experiences as those characters, but they make you feel like you are, and you want to feel that. All the time. But the truth is you’re never going to fly in a ship with a talking dragon head, you’re never going to visit a boarding school with talking paintings and spinning stairs, you’re never going to feel the adrenaline rush you’re sure everyone is feeling running from zombies. But that’s why these things are there, to fill your mind with imagination, not drain it! Our country deserves more than this!
Again, don’t cut yourself away from it all, it’s there for you to read, to watch, to enjoy. Just…. don’t let it decide who you’re going to be. There is so much more to this world than your ship, than canon versus not-canon, than fan-fiction, than this. The world is ready for you to leave your story–a story so amazing, your favorite fandom will pale in comparison. You just need to know where that life stops and yours starts.