"I've been thinking about tomorrow Instead of drowning in the past Oh we had good times even back when Dreams were all we had to last So as I wake up this bright morning Nothing's gonna bring me down" - "Still," Seinabo Sey
I’m sitting at my desk trying to think about what I want to say, trying to write this post. I stare out the window – my view made up of a towering tree, brownish green grass, the side of an abandoned brown house, grey clouds blanketing the sky. Oh how I wish summer would arrive. My desk is a cluttered mess as usual. Binders and notebooks for school are piled high on my left as a constant reminder that I still have to survive about two more months until I’m free. Books that I want to read yet can’t seem to find time for are lined up – Middlesex by Jeffrey Eugenides, One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest by Ken Kesey, Everything is F*cked by Mark Manson, Blood Meridian by Cormac McCarthy, Middlemarch by George Eliot… Wooden signs hang above my desk with the inspirational, and somewhat cheesy, quotes. “God would have never put that dream in your heart if he didn’t want you to live it” or Shakespeare’s line “and though she be but little she is fierce” (okay that one isn’t so cheesy, but the design makes it seem so cliche with the little hearts and arrows). And as I sit here and try to write something that isn’t complete garbage, music plays in my ears. I’ve had several songs on repeat lately, but I keep finding myself returning to Seinabo Sey’s “Still.” The sound, the emotion, and the lyrics – it feels perfect. It may sound stupid, but when I listen to it, her voice so clear, strength seems to flood through my body.
And as I sit here, I realize what’s stopping me from knowing what to write: I keep doubting myself. All I want is to be a writer – to be able to write something that will be read, something that will be heard, something that will leave its mark. And yes, I know I will never be the next J.K. Rowling, or the next Toni Morrison, or the next John Steinbeck. I dream of it, though – the power in being able to make your voice heard. But I doubt myself. I often laugh at myself when I spend time trying to write or working on this blog. My dream of becoming a writer seems so unrealistic… so silly.
Negative thoughts and snickers invade my head. And there are times when that darkness is consuming, convincing me to just give up. But here I am, still trying to write. Maybe I am silly… but maybe I’m not. No matter how much I keep doubting myself, I still keep going. And I think that means something.
I know I want to be a writer. I’ve loved books and words for as long as I can remember. Books have a remarkable way of transporting me to far away lands, to the lives of others, to a world away from my own. And this love for words has ignited in me a fire to make my own voice heard. Even if the beginning is just writing a blog that fades away into the endless void that is the internet, never to be discovered… I won’t stop. I’m not writing for fame or for wealth. I’m writing to heal. I’m writing to find my voice. I’m writing to find myself.
I know I don’t have it all figured out, and I’m definitely not one to be giving advice. But I’ve discovered that you can’t give up. No matter what, if there is something you love to do, you have to do it. Ignore the negative voices in your head – passion and love are so much stronger. And yeah, it may be scary. But it’s only scary because it matters. You will crash, you will be beaten and bruised… but that’s no reason to stop. At some point you have to stop worrying and stop doubting. Leave everything behind and leap.