I have a confession. A secret that I’ve only been brave enough to tell people anonymously until a few months ago, when I finally told Dan, my husband. Because he is excited for me, and extremely proud and supportive, it has begun to trickle out. So, I thought it was time I fessed up to my friends and family.
This secret began with a sudden realization about 2 years ago that I wasn’t happy. This was a surprising idea to me, as I was under the impression that there was no reason I should not be happy. I had a great job, a sturdy house, food on my table, clothes on my back, and a wonderful family that loved me. Yet, here I was, at 28, having a slightly off schedule quarter life crisis. Was I happy? I was constantly stressed, quick-tempered, easily overwhelmed, full of mood swings and temper tantrums, with ambition and motivation no where to be seen. I ended every day exhausted, taking out whatever emotions I had left on my family, unintentionally creating a not awesome environment in my household. So no, I was not happy.
But why? Why was I unhappy? What was missing from my life that my soul was demanding? With some divine intervention and some guidance from some unexpected places, I began to search. I began to look at myself, and find what it was that I needed. I started attending yoga classes on a regular basis, participating in Instagram challenges (remember all of those wonderful pictures?), following yogis and life coaches until I came across a few that resonated with me and guided me towards a path full of more yoga and self reflection. During all of this, every time I asked myself what happy felt like, I kept circling back to two things: learning, and writing.
I am a nerd in the truest sense. I love to learn. And I love to share what I have learned. To the point of obnocsiouness. This is not a secret to anyone. But, I also love to write. Again, to most of you, not a secret. But what is a secret is how little I’ve been doing it since I started college almost 10 years ago. Learning is something is pretty easy to do, especially with all of the technology we have available. No matter how busy you are, you can always learn something. But writing … writing is a bit harder to do when you are busy. So I didn’t. It was easier to say that I was too tired, or I had too much homework, or … And when the faucet stopped flowing, my soul went into hibernation. I lived on auto-pilot, putting one foot in front of the other, doing what ever it was that needed to be done to get to where I needed to go. Until that fateful day when I finally realized that it wasn’t good enough anymore. I want more out of my life, and writing needs to be a part of it.
An all to familiar thought started to float into my mind. I didn’t just want to write in a journal, or poetry full of angst. A book. As soon as this thought cloud drifted into my grey matter, it was quickly blown back with the ever reliable Self Doubt wind. “Don’t you know how many people try to get books published every day?” It would scream at my dream. “Why should anyone pick anything that you have ever written? Why are you different than anyone else? What makes you so special?”
But what if? These authors and yogis and life coaches I had found planted a little seed of hope for my dream to catch on to and take hold. It struggled for a bit, but soon, it started to bloom and grow stronger. And so I left them to battle for a while. The howl of self doubt and the seedling of hope, caught in a sumo wrestling fight against each other, each one trying to push the other out of the ring. Then, once again, serendipity decided to pay me a visit. I won a GoodReads giveway for a book titled “How to Write a Novel in 10 Minutes a Day.” A few days later, I was emailed a GroupOn for an online writing course that had been discounted from $250 down to $30. The seedling grew into a tree, and pushed self doubt right on its ass.
But still, I started in secret. I bought a new notebook and some pens and hid them in a drawer. I only pulled them out to write in the early morning hours of the weekend, when I had a few moments of solitude before any one else was up. I continued this way for about a year, not really talking about my plans or hopes, just casually writing and building up my storyline as it was convenient. This was frustrating for my soul, and left enough room for my self doubt to think that it still had a good chance at coming back into the ring. I couldn’t continue like this, though. I can’t continue. So a few weeks ago, I fessed up to my husband. I admitted to him what had been so hard to admit to myself. I want to be an author. I want to write. And you know what he said? “Great! Do it.” That simple.
So, that is my secret, my confession. I am writing a book. I am going to do my best to be an author of a novel. I am going to listen to my soul, and follow this path to see where it leads me. Maybe no where. But what if? What if? I have to do this for me, for my happiness. I’m not quitting my job or anything drastic like that, but I’m also not going to ask my dream to hide in the shadows anymore, like something I should be ashamed of. It is something that I am going to love about myself, and use it to feed that part of me that keeps me sane during the insane moments of my day. I truly believe that this will make me a happier person, and therefore, allow me to be a better person for those that need me, like my family. I am writing a novel for me, myself, and I. But I do hope that some of you will find enjoyment in it as well. I guess only time will tell.
Thanks for reading, and happy writing~