Writing is something that I have done from a young age. I was always writing little short stories, bits of poetry, and even novels scrawled into composition notebooks. Most people who identify as writers have a similar story. I was born with a love of words as much as I was with blonde hair and pale skin.
Despite this deep love, my history with writing has been tumultuous. There have been periods of my life when I have written avidly -every day and all kinds of writing. I had notepads full of poetry (much of it morbid) and when I got older, endless word documents filled with scraps of stories. I have also had long stretches of time where writing is something I can’t bring myself to do, no matter how much I love it. I’m having one of those stretches now, and it’s been going on for a long time at this point.
I attribute this stall in my writing practice mostly to my depression and anxiety. Depression makes it hard for me to motivate myself; I’m tired all the time and I struggle to keep myself focused. It feels like there’s a cloud over my brain all the time. The anxiety breeds fear in me. Writing has become scary. I always kept a journal as a teenager and doing so helped me express and process my emotions. My anxiety developed in college (and has since grown) and that’s when I stopped journaling consistently. To me a journal is a place to be brutally honest with myself. It’s a place for me to write down all the details of something and then mull them over. The journals I kept from my teenage years were filled with raw emotion: all my anger, sadness, and moments of joy in intense detail.
That kind of raw emotion is something I have been too scared to deal with. I’m aware of this and am trying to deal with it (obviously, as I’m typing this out now) but it’s not something I’ve completely unpacked. I wrote a journal entry a few weeks ago. It was intense. I cried a lot while writing it and after. I haven’t plucked up the courage to write another one yet, but hopefully I can soon. It was therapeutic despite how awful I felt while doing it.
I don’t want to be afraid of writing. It was always my dream to write novels, and although I’m not 100% sure I want to be a novelist now, I definitely want to share stories. I want to be able to maintain a blog (fingers crossed I don’t fail at this one) and write more poetry. I want to put my soul on a page and share it with others and forge connection through that experience. I want to be honest about my life and my feelings and hopefully let anyone else having the same feelings know that they’re not alone. I want to know that I’m not the one who’s alone.
I need to flex the muscles. That’s partly what this blog is. That’s hopefully what my attempts at journaling will be. I’m trying to remember not to get too frustrated with myself. I keep thinking it’s like a faucet I can just turn on have at full force immediately. It’s not; I know it’s not. It’s a slow trek forward and it’s not easy. It’s worth it though. It has to be.