Sometimes one little bag can take up a big piece of your heart

I’ve written about my Louis Vuitton Monogram Speedy 25 a few times before, and though it has always held a special place in my heart; I don’t think I realized how much it actually means to me until I began to work it back into my bag rotation. I should have had an inkling that my Speedy was more than just a bag, because even though I’ve barely used it the last five years or so, I knew that I would never let it go. It was my very first ‘big girl bag’—the first bag I received as a young adult, capable of making my own decisions though very unsure about much of anything in my life. I was 18 years old, and the bag was a graduation gift from my parents, which is something that I think means more to me now than it did then.

That bag became like a bit of a security blanket for me, something that felt like home when I felt lost or alone

In August 2008 I started college at the Fashion Institute of Technology in NYC. At 18, I was too introverted and shy to live on my own away from my parents, so 4 days a week I made the 1 hour commute from my childhood home on Long Island to FIT’s 27th Street campus. Suddenly, I was thrust into adulthood. Just 3 months prior my dad was picking me up from school and driving me home, and now I was commuting into New York City, alone. I carried my books in a tote and always had my Speedy in the crook of my arm. For 2 years straight that bag was by my side. Holding in it my prized possessions, but also making me feel safe and secure. It sounds sort of silly, but I didn’t really make friends until 2 years in, and my bag felt like a way for me to relate to my classmates even though I found it hard to create lasting bonds. That bag became like a bit of a security blanket for me, something that felt like home when I felt lost or alone. I remember getting on the train after long days of class—hungry, tired and overwhelmed with the work ahead of me. I couldn’t wait to get home, and maybe that bag was always by my side because it felt like home to me, even when the days wore long.

In 2010, between my Sophomore and Junior years of college I travelled to Europe and saved up to purchase my second Louis Vuitton. I was incredibly proud that I bought it with my own money, but even still my Speedy was always the favorite. Eventually I sold the bag, opting to use my Speedy over the Verona PM in Damier Ebene I snagged in Paris. That bag has since been discontinued, and though the memory of buying her will remain with me, I don’t miss that bag very much. Something about my Speedy always felt ‘just right,’ and I loved always having that bag by my side—through the good and the bad.

When I graduated college I was—admittedly—a little bit lost. I knew that fashion was where I belonged, but I was always one to thrive in a creative environment, and though I studied the business of fashion I felt like that career path just wasn’t for me. I tried my hand at many different things, from working in a retail store doing visual merchandising to interning and eventually nannying, while I attempted to find my way in the world. I was living at home with my parents and I couldn’t even afford to go out with my friends at times, let alone buy a new bag, so the best I could do was wander the mall during the day alongside stay-at-home moms and college kids while my friends were working full-time jobs and flourishing in their careers. With my Louis Vuitton Speedy in tow, I would go into Nordstrom and Bloomingdales to shop the latest arrivals, making it look like I belonged there, but knowing full well I wasn’t going to be walking out with a new bag anytime soon.

bringing my old Speedy out brought back so many memories. I carried it around NYC for a week or so, both too lazy to switch out my bag and too enchanted by the nostalgia it made me feel

Eventually I started interning and freelancing and was able to both save some cash as well as snag some new bags with my generous discount and I began using my Speedy less and less. Maybe it was that I began to come into my own a bit more and didn’t need my ‘security blanket,’ or maybe it was just that the novelty of carrying something new took over. Eventually I stopped carrying my Speedy all together, and it remained at the bottom of my bag bin for years until a few weeks ago when I decided to take her out for a whirl. She’s old now—10 to be exact, and you can see her age in the darkened Vachetta leather handles and tarnished lock, but bringing my old Speedy out brought back so many memories. I carried it around NYC for a week or so, both too lazy to switch out my bag and too enchanted by the nostalgia it made me feel. 10 years ago I wandered around in between classes with that same Speedy on my arm, dreaming about the day I would be able to call this city my home. I thought a lot that week about how far I’ve come in my life and how blessed I am to be right where I belong, and unlike the bag on my arm, that feeling is priceless.

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