What Changed? A Collection Inspired by Skaters + Heartbreak
What Changed? A Collection Inspired by Skaters + Heartbreak
By Sara Lacusky
My story is neither funny nor cute. There’s a happy ending, I’m sure. Somewhere the fuck out there, there’s a happy end… for now, I just take it step by step.
I have always thought of myself as a strong, independent woman. A leader, a fighter… you know? You never really realize who you are when you rely on someone else so heavily for so long. Everything becomes about them, it’s all-consuming. You worry where they are, what they’re doing, if they’re happy, what you could be doing to make them happier; really, it’s just never enough. This upside down way of living is what most people my age explain as “love”.
It’s so fucked up but when you’re “in it” no one cares, they ‘ooo’ and ‘ahh’ and tell you how jealous they are of your ‘perfect’ relationship. This tricks us into thinking the insanity of it all is worth it. It makes you feel better than others who don’t have the delusional, great relationship you have. Society makes us feel as though even if it’s not the best it’s better than loneliness.
We end up pointing the finger inward, condemning ourselves for the uncontrollable unraveling of all we know. We throw ourselves onto the fiery blaze that is the finale of a toxic relationship.
What Changed? is one of my favorite projects I’ve ever slaved over. It was conceptualized and born through the inferno that was my life after he left. So much of my time, love and energy went into curating these prints and the collection. I had never fully been able to do that before being separated from the person I thought was my security blanket. The break was a blessing cleverly disguised as the reaper. It swallowed me whole, tied weights to my ankles and threw me in deep dark waters. That’s the thing, when you blindly rely on a partner for breath: you become consumed by them. Intoxicated by the feeling of hope that they sell you at the beginning of the relationship. That shiny prize, the empty promise of security, never-ending love, peace and companionship. What we all long for.
So, what happens when the rug gets violently wrenched out from underneath the phony foundation you stood confidently on? What then? What happens when the person you gave your totality to hands you a bomb, then gets the hell out of the way to dodge?
You ask yourself: What Changed? You blame yourself, your weight, your appearance, your personality. You blame you. We end up pointing the finger inward, condemning ourselves for the uncontrollable unraveling of all we know. We throw ourselves onto the fiery blaze that is the finale of a toxic relationship.
Most people don’t understand. They say, ‘you’re so much better off!’, and stupid shit that’s supposed to make you feel more whole. The truth is no matter how good the break is for you, in the end, it doesn’t change how awful it feels while it’s happening. There’s something about being betrayed/abandoned by the person who claims they love you the most that leaves a bad taste in your mouth.
His release on me ushered me into my work, studies and religion…. I’m able to love me, my studies and my faith without being censored by a boy faking a feeling for me.
Looking back on it all, I’m thankful he ended it. I’m happier, healthier, and living freely for the first time in years. His release on me ushered me into my work, studies and religion. I have never felt more passionately about anything that I do my major. Without the worry of spending time with him at the skate park, or keeping him happy in the bedroom, I’m able to love me, my studies and my faith without being censored by a boy faking a feeling for me.
Part of me still wants to believe the things he said were true. Part of me longs for the fun parts of the scheme that was our partnership. The funny thing is that the further we drift apart the less and less I remember having fun. My mom likes to tell me the feelings were true and the love was real. She guesses it may have been too real for a boy who was too immature to be ready. It’s a challenge to fall out of love with someone you became so exhaustedly invested in. He was lost before he chose to declare himself lost. I wonder if he’s worse off now, falling into past bad habits. I’d like to imagine I had changed him in some way for the better, but that’s probably not true.
Going on, the biggest thing is moving forward. So, What Changed? But then again who cares? It changed for the better. It doesn’t hurt like hell anymore. It hurts, but for different reasons now. Yeah, so what? Life is funny. It’s my choice to laugh at the fact that his new fuck-buddy sits next to me in class. And yeah, so what? I could beat myself up, asking how naive I was to believe it was really forever. But it’s not on us to punish ourselves for falling for the wrong person. People have an amusing way of showing them who they truly are. Don’t ignore it when they show you.
I know it’s cliché but there is beauty in brokenness. It’s up to us to discover the beauty and move past the broken.
The name of the game is forgiveness. I have never been great at forgiveness, I’m much better at holding grudges and waiting for justice. These days everyone is good holding grudges. It’s so much easier to stay mad at someone who has wounded you, especially when the wrong-doings pile up. How do you forgive someone who hasn’t asked and doesn’t deserve your forgiveness? How do you begin to peel back the layers of bitterness, anger, betrayal, and abandonment to move forward? Honestly, I think we need to fucking get over ourselves.
It is not for you or I to judge anyone, we certainly aren’t perfect and we all need forgiveness. Being bitter is not worth holding on to whatever hurt us. Think about it; the person you’re upset with probably doesn’t know or care about what you have your panties in a twist over. We exhaust ourselves with trying to maintain all our grudges and hatreds… Aren’t you tired? Haven’t you had enough of feeling a tinge of hate towards someone every time you think of them or the situation? It’s fucking annoying and exhausting to be bitter and it, undoubtedly, isn’t cute. Yes, people have wronged us, we want people to know and to sympathize with us but what is that going to change? If you’re waiting for justice you won’t find it in what has already disappointed you time and time again. What Changed? Nothing. The person still wronged you and more than likely, doesn’t care.
So, forgive. Forget. Who the fuck cares? What Changed? Not much but I’m changing and learning. I know it’s cliché but there is beauty in brokenness. It’s up to us to discover the beauty and move past the broken.
I was tired of quietly watching and supporting him at the park, feeling wasted, invisible. I wanted to take myself and other women off the sidelines and make noise for them in the world of skating.
To tie it all back to my collection, the themes that pushed my collection were inspired by breaking out of conformity. I wanted a feel of breaking chains and being unapologetically true. The world of skating, which I had been submerged in for the last year and a half, is ruled by men and tomboy ideals. Most women skaters dress like the men, searching for anything close to feeling equal. Men’s clothing also provides comfortability and mobility which is easier to find in baggy clothing opposed to typical women’s attire. So, my mission was to add beautiful, fun, feminine prints to streetwear. I want women to be free and expressive and not feel as though they have to conform to the “sk8r boi” stereotype. My ex is a skater, by the end of our relationship I was tired of quietly watching and supporting him at the park, feeling wasted, invisible. I wanted to take myself and other women off the sidelines and make noise for them in the world of skating.
So What Changed? I did. I learned to create. I taught myself to find utter beauty in all my brokenness.