I’ve elected to tackle another bucket list item!
And I found the perfect one: You are Enough by Positive Writer
For this writing contest, I wanted to explain to you how I rediscovered writing and how it could be the missing piece to your happiness.
See, when I was a child, I loved to write. I loved books and I wanted to be a part of that experience: creating worlds of adventure and characters that were fierce and strong. That’s what I wanted to be when I grew up. I wanted to be a writer.
So I wrote stories and kept them in composition notebooks and my sister and I would sketch characters, flesh them out, and make them real.
As I grew older, it was more and more difficult to say that was the career I wanted. Everyone else chose real jobs like doctors and lawyers. I was discouraged by everyone. The job of a writer doesn’t pay well enough. And what if I wasn’t good enough? What if it took me too long to find this out?
So I took the boring way out. I got a job in hospitality (not recommended) and started to map out my career. It was after I started a family that everything started to really click.
I was losing pieces of myself. This happens sometimes. It becomes more and more difficult to manage the pieces of your life as you start adding things to it. I started working fifty hours a week. All my time at home was focused on my children. Were they eating enough? Are they trying to climb on the furniture? Are they sharing their toys? The mom life is hard. Then my next priority was trying to manage my relationship with my husband and making sure that I was not neglecting him. Then there’s the pets, the leak in the bathroom, the birthday party coming up, and did I mention that I hadn’t showered in three days?
I was overwhelmed and not happy with my life.
I didn’t read anymore, let alone write. I didn’t listen to music. I didn’t draw or paint. I would watch TV until I fell asleep and took an occasional one-hour shower to sit and cry in.
I placed myself low on the list of many priorities that were stacking out of control. I had to do this. I had to try and maintain structure in my household and my life. I had to preserve my energy for whoever needed it next, be it my husband, my kids, my job. It had to be this way. It was a method of survival.
But that’s just it. I was surviving but I was not living.
About this time last year, I got a bizarre urge to start writing again. It seemed to come out of nowhere but it came around the time of my breaking point.
The dream I had for this blog was large and unreal but in my head it was achievable. It was realistic and it was something I was supposed to be doing. I was a child again, dreaming. And it felt great. Yes, I was rusty and out of practice but I missed it.
And that’s when I started my blog.
It didn’t pan out at first.
I knew it wouldn’t. I was so out of practice. I had too much on my plate. I had no time to sit down and write. I couldn’t figure out how to create the blog. It was too complicated.
I had so many excuses as to why it wouldn’t work and thus, I realized my own demise.
I lasted another 6 months or so at my job before I finally made the decision to leave. It was risky but I felt like I needed to go back to school and finish my Business Degree (I never learn, do I?). It was also an opportunity to begin healing from the damage that I had caused myself over the past few years of out of control anxiety and panic attacks.
This new path also gave me time and one less excuse. Write.
So I started small.
Little lines of poetry that I thought of before I went to sleep. Ideas for characters. Small short stories that I never finished. It didn’t matter how small or incomplete, I would jot them all down.
When I looked back at them later, I was surprised to see some of the stuff I had come up with. Sure, they weren’t perfect. I made some edits, but there were bits and pieces that I really liked.
I added some writing tasks to my bucket list, despite the fear and uncertainty. My bucket list has given me the freedom to make mistakes and to have imperfect experiences. It’s my safe zone and my area to be me without the fear of being inadequate. It helped me do this with my writing too.
I learned that this writing isn’t really for anyone. The writing is mine. It always has been. And I’ve realized that it’s okay to be me in all my imperfect glory.
I hope that this message helps inspire you to start writing again, to free yourself from the chains of responsibility and reality. I hope that your creative well begins to flow and that you take back those pieces of yourself that you might have dropped along the way. But please, always remember that you must refill that well from time to time. Don’t let it run empty. I found that taking time to appreciate the creative arts help this most. Listening to music, aimlessly writing or painting a blank canvas, or doing DIY craft projects have all been immensely helpful in refilling my well. It had been empty for so long that I had lost what made me who I am.
This has been the greatest adventure by far in this blog as I start to rediscover myself through my writing. I hope to see your own adventures and encourage you to be brave and imperfect and to inspire someone else.
Until our next adventures,
#69 – Enter a Writing Contest (Category: Arts, Literature, Music, & Movies)