Oyster Essay: Not Obsessed Anymore, by Shelby Hamilton

It’s all just fluff…

Call us high, but think about this: you’ve never seen your own face before. Pictures of your face? Yes. Your face in a mirror? Yes. A categorically unflattering version of your face when you open your front camera? Heck yes. But it’s dimension deprived. You’ve never, and you wont ever, actually see your own face. So why are we so obsessed with putting $300 creams on it, and serums with gold shavings, and oils that have been suffocated from fruits, and skin perfecting whatevers? It’s sort of like hanging artworks paint-side to the wall, or putting on a film and facing the other way. It’s sort of… all fluff. Enter Fluff, the Australian beauty brand who is dust busting the debris of our make-up bags. Within their community, they’ve identified that beauty is important — to celebrate but not define us — and what follows is a series of essays that explore how much it really matters.

Dear Oyster,

What if I happen to not feel that feeling of obsession towards anything, anymore? What if I feel like that word and me live a million miles apart? I’m not happy with the word. I’m not happy with the feelings that the word reacquaints me with. My feelings tell me that the notion of obsession is actually one of many things that I am happy to avoid.

Each possession, each idea, each person or stage of my life that I have obsessed over once upon a time, they tend to break. Not only do they break, they tend to break me.

I’m tired of keeping up. I prefer a good night’s rest.

I can’t hold all of these projections that I’m casting. Knowing me, I cannot obsess over things that will eventually dissolve. As much as I’ve been told that heartache suits me, I would rather not set myself up for a broken heart. No matter how pretty I look on the outside.

I feel comfortable telling you that obsession is something I have decided, no longer weighs me down. I’m detached from what it means. It’s a habit that I can break. It’s a word that everyone throws around. I’ve stopped playing catch.

If something is apparently so dear to me, something I’m obsessed with, I clearly can’t live without it! I’m not willing to risk possibly breaking it. I’ve broken many things before. I will break this thing that is apparently so dear to me, if I obsess over it. I prefer these things to play.

I’m tired of trying to keep a hold of things that are fleeting. Like a feeling. I’m unable to ever make anything stay. My expectations see-saw, like my feelings, they’re ever-changing.

I have obsessed over my face, it crumbled before my eyes. I have obsessed over my body, it made me wish to not have a body anymore. I have obsessed over a boy too many, I broke us. I have obsessed over my Instagram, I became bored.
What if I just don’t have this obsession thing in me anymore? It’s all too much for me to handle.

And now I’ve regurgitated all of the feelings that word reacquaints me with.
I’d rather let it all go. I’d rather go and play.

introduction: Hayley Morgan
essay: Shelby Hamilton
originally published in Oyster 116