Once upon a time there lived a girl (who perhaps was too old to still be called a girl, but it is never wise to suggest such things) who needed to write. The reasons for this need were several but could basically be reduced to her desire to remain sane--or at least keep the crazy under control.
Sunday, July 31, 2011
It seemed such a simple thing to do. All that was required was for her to lace up her mental trainers and Just. Do. It. Such a snappy little slogan, but it was never so easy for her to put into practice. Why was it she always found it so difficult to strike that balance between her inner life and the world? In would rush the world at just the moment she became inspired or had deep thoughts on which to think and write and she would find herself mourning the time lost for silent walks and the lack of poetry in her life. Once the habit was broken, the momentum lost, it was always hard to regain.
Sometimes the mundane realities of life--the housework, the bills to pay, the children to raise and feed--pulled her away and left her too weary to think at the end of the day. At other times her own disorganized and distracted brain was the enemy. Then, too, there were times when life pressed hard upon her, shoving her down, and her favorite tool for fighting it--her pen--had to be laid aside because the stories she needed to tell did not belong to her alone. Those were the darkest times for her. She still had hope and faith. There was still that light for her, but she had to explore other methods of therapy outside of writing. She had to learn to say out loud the things she felt could be written but should never be spoken, and this took something more than she knew she had, even if she only said them to those she trusted most.
True, she could have chosen to write quietly, hiding her words away in a diary or stashing them in some secret file, but the words never seemed real to her when they were locked away like that. And what is the point if the words aren't real?
In all those dark months, she suspected there would be a time when the stories which did not belong to her would fade into the distance and those filling her mind would again belong only to her. She hoped there would be happy endings for them all and new beginnings, too. Still, she knew that each must be free to choose how his story will go, and that knowledge alone gave her strength and courage to press forward on her own path.
And now here she is, lacing up her writing shoes, putting one word in front of the other, forcing herself back into the race. Because she must. Because she may.