Or hopefully I am, anyway. (Thirty-three has yet to take me out! Would you look at that!) The recent efforts toward change in my life have made me reflective, the hour a strange kind of nostalgic for the almosts and life events missed. I’m thinking about all the ways I held back or was held back from being everything that I am and could have grown into, the life experiences I can’t go back and share, the people who would have loved me and who I wanted very much to love– someone asked me recently what my goals were. In the context of that space where they were asking, I was fairly certain of the kind of answer they wanted, but my smart ass opted to get cute about it and ask if they meant in life generally orrrrr– but then as I answered, I realized my answer would have been more or less the same; I want experience, I want stories. And I became a bit emotional when my brain finally clicked on how that has always really been all I wanted. It never seemed like a valid answer, because it wasn’t a thing that could obviously be directly translated into a productive and monetizable pursuit, not one that had ever been expressed as worth the time and effort to do so. Stories and storytelling, like most arts, were (are) severely undervalued, and I internalized that way too hard. For all that stories have been my whole heart, my most sacred sanctuary and most beloved vice, and I feel passionately about the power and artistry in storytelling, I’m finding I’m still struggling with the concept that writing could be a viable career option for me. This is one more thing where I’ve allowed myself to hold back. I’m angry about it, if I’m being honest. And then that just cycles me around to being angry and grieving for the parts of me that have languished, the versions of me left behind, snuffed out before I had the chance to explore them, the me and all the stories I would have had if in just a few more instances I’d had the room to take the chance and not let fear from others wear so deep into me. To the baby me who knew no better and chose to be safe, I’m sorry I did that to us and I love you for doing your best to get us here. To the me yet to come (should we make it past thirty-three, lol), I’m sorry it took so long to figure this out properly, so we could do better still. May we be everything we needed that no one else managed for us, and may we shed more and more still the reservations that have not served us. May we be everything we have always felt afraid to be.
That was meant to just be a brief note about– well, I’m not really sure, I suppose. Reflection and regret and resolve? And then about how I’ve somehow not had the motivation to write for All Hallow’s Read, even though I’ve been anxiously muttering for months that I need to write, so as to not be scrambling ONE MORE YEAR AGAIN to bang something out, and now it’s over halfway through October. So here we are again! Here we are again. Why?
This post got away from me. If you’ve stuck it out to the end, hello there. Thank you and I hope you’re hydrated and as well and safe as can be. I won’t say anything about the current state of the world, because it’s exhausting, but wherever you are in it, I love you.