I know I'm not a special snowflake. (Though some would disagree and say I have yet to learn this.) I'm not the only twenty-something year old girl that spent her formative years studying Rory and Lorelai Gilmore, willing herself to be them. But when has being exactly like thousands of other people ever stopped me from talking about myself.
It was on ABC Family when I got home from school. I got the first and second seasons on boxset for Christmas. I would watch them when school had let out for summer until the discs wore out and I could hear birds announcing I had made it to 6am. I started a notebook detailing the plot of season one and where songs appeared in certain episodes (there's websites for this now that I would have killed for then). I was firmly in favour of the cookies and love and the Dean and the Rory and the cookies and the love.
I wanted to work hard and set my eye on applying to Ivy League schools like Rory. I applied to one in the end. Got as far as a phone interview and blew it by talking nervously to the recruiter about Twilight. Oh, to be eighteen.
I idolised stubborn, sharp-tongued and reference-wielding Lorelai. I hated the way she sucked in her cheeks when she was looking at something or upset. And I pined for my mother to be more like her than an Emily. Which was not fair on my mom, as she was a far cry from either.
Basically this is all to say that I am rewatching Gilmore girls again. And it's about as traumatic an experience as revisiting anything from your past when you've got a little more grown up life experience under your belt.
This show is incredibly white. Like, let's be real. It's a show about white people problems. There's Lane but she's a very secondary character and always trying to squeeze herself into Rory's increasingly busy life. There's Michel but about all he serves is for comic relief. A gay man of colour living in conservative Connecticut in the early 2000s – I'd be grumpy too at the idiots I'd have to deal with every day. So like most things when you get older and are the byproduct of a liberal arts education, the things that you once loved and still comfort you, you also recognise as problematic.
There is still loads of residual Rory that's melded itself into my personality. Jumping and screaming 'bah' when startled by someone talking to me. Feeling compelled to bring a book with me everywhere I go. And this guilty face from Lorelai when I ask for a cheeky favour.
So that's a little bit of what's it's been like to revisit my childhood this month. To see things I had hoped for in high school and how different a direction my life took. To realise my privilege in growing up watching faces that looked like mine. And despite this newfound discomfort in something so seminal in my teenage years, I'm trying to allow myself to enjoy it for what it was to me. An escape to a small town where women were smart, autonomous, hilarious, made mistakes, had ambitions and looked after each other.