It’s a new year.
I’ll admit that I don’t actually have any vows. I sort of made a blanket resolution: that I would find whatever the thing is that I have recently recognized I’m internally seeking. Solace in myself? Comfort in the knowledge of being fulfilled? self-sufficient? strong? independent enough to be sung about in songs? Or just knowing that I am my own person? I don’t know – I just have an overwhelming need to search for that satisfaction I’m craving so dearly.
But you know what I’ve realized? I think writing’s going to be the thing that helps me find it, that acorn heaven my squirrel self is so aching for*. It fills me in so many ways: it’s a friend, when I need to get something off my chest; it’s meditation, when I need to find something calm in the midst of the chaotic; it’s medicine, when I’m aching from loneliness or seething in anger; it’s thrilling, when I have an adventure sinking its way onto the page off the tapping of my fingertips. And at all times, every day, no matter what I write – I feel like I am participating in that moment in creation. At all times, no matter how craptastic the words on the page, I am blending life and art.
2015 was my year of deciding to fake it. I dropped the comfortable paycheck life and moved across the country to join an MFA program; I took a holy-grail sized leap of faith** in myself, and I’ve been whistling that happy tune in the face of my fears since***. Fear #1? I chose a career in which it is extremely likely that I will fail. I’m worried all the time – that I chose incorrectly, that I have the talent of a vomited maggot, that I will never earn enough to pay the very real bills coming my way, that I’m going to have to run from the IRS with Tim Allen****, that I have essentially chosen a career in poverty. But I don’t intend to be a failure. It sounds silly to say it – I mean, who really fails with intention. But I think there is something to be said about specifically and consciously focusing on success, as opposed to either assuming it’ll come to you (wrong, you’re not special, and I’m sorry if I’m the first person to tell you that) or not really thinking about it at all.
I should say that by success I mean being proactive about this dream that I’ve set out to capture. It’s so easy, especially in a program like I’m in, to spend two years telling your family and anyone else that will listen that you’re *twirls mustache* a writer – without actually writing a single word. I am not going to let that be me.
So I guess I do have one resolution: I will write every day, whether I write one page or a dozen. I will write because in writing I will find kernels of truth and beads of perseverance. I will write so I never feel ashamed or embarrassed telling people that I am a writer. I will write because it’s a path to the essence of happiness, in a way. I will write because every bone in my body is bursting with words, and I refuse to be the lazy ass who gets in their way. I will write because it’s something I can do for me: something that comes from who I am and will help me define who I am.
Aiite, 2016. Bring it.
The asterixed references have been brought to you by:
*Ice Age (the series)
**Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade
***The King and I
****THAT ONE TIM ALLEN MOVIE DO YOU REMEMBER FOR RICHER OR POORER