Put it on paper.

I had a teacher in 7th grade that had us write 10 songs and make a CD cover. At first, I was more excited about the CD cover. I believe I had a butterfly on the cover, not because butterflies were girlie or pretty, but because I thought I was like a butterfly. I’m not kidding. I loved how butterflies started life as caterpillars, in fact, I was obsessed with caterpillars when I was little, they amused me endlessly. I liked that they spent years of their life protected in a cocoon, a safe haven in which to grow wings. By the time I had entered 7th grade, I was over my protected cocoon, I felt I had grown my wings. All through high school I considered getting a tattoo of the greek mythological figure Psykhe. The Greeks believed that your soul left your body in the form of a butterfly winged girl named Psykhe. Basically, I was delusional at a very young age. Thank god butterfly tattoos became wildly popular in the 90’s and I had an innate desire to do the opposite of “cool”. On the record, I never considered putting it on my lower back.

Okay, enough of the CD cover. I started writing. Everything had to be original and true to form, I took this as an expression of who I was. But first I had to take that week in 7th grade and figure out who I was. The 10 songs were incredibly lame, the Jewel CD in my discman didn’t help matters. I remember reading the “poems” or “lyrics” years later and laughing. The point is, I found my voice. In that voice, I found my wings.

I think I was born with an excess of feelings. I’m serious. I think I have way more feelings than is necessary. Writing helped me purge some of that. Whenever I felt alone, smothered, broken or lost I’d pull the journal books out from under my bed and start writing. If I was crying, the ink from my pen seemed to cry with me. I would write so fast. No commas, no periods and I would cross out lines that I didn’t like and continue on the same page. I didn’t tear the messy pages out of the book. I didn’t write in pencil with a goal of erasing. The mistakes, the mess was apart of the process. It wasn’t simply cathartic, it changed how I felt about everything. I could start writing full of anger, sadness, confusion but when I got it on paper, if I was able to fully express what I felt, I could leave it on the paper.

If I could turn my flooding emotions, my running thoughts, my jumbled mess into something beautiful or at least tangible, I was content. If I could share it with someone who related, I felt whole. You.are.my.someone.

Opening myself up to others has time and again given friends and complete strangers permission to share their own flaws, their own pain and dreams with me. I feel incredibly blessed by the intimate connections created throughout my life.

In a social media fixated world, where we instagram our most beautiful moments and update people via facebook and twitter on our most exciting news,  we could stand to hear each other’s truths, to see the whole picture more frequently. We connect best through the heart, through our deepest pains and our wildest dreams. Don’t you think? So, I will write. I will write for me, I will write for you.

If you are reading,  comment. It fuels the blog.  I leave you with the below words, authors unknown.

Love to you,

A

unknown author

unknown author

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3 comments

  1. Shaunea

    I absolutely love this post Angela. I commend you for being able to continue writing and for being able to reveal your written thoughts to others. You really are an inspiration to others around you. That is a scary thing to do. I too use to write when I was younger. I did it because it was my only acceptable outlet. No one could tell me I couldn’t do it. When my siblings and I were younger, we were exposed to some pretty scary environments. My mother, being single, vulnerable, and unsure on how to raise kids, put us in some pretty bad situations and because we would get into trouble if we talked to anyone about it, I needed some kind of outlet, otherwise I made myself sick. I used paper as my therapist. Years later, when I was finally on my own, I came across my piles of journals and began reading some. I then decided to toss them because I felt that that was my way of moving on and forgetting. Today I wish I still had them because I am at a point in my life where revisiting them would really show me how far life has come and how happy I have become.

    • LOVE this. Thank you for sharing your personal writing story. I totally know what you mean by only appropriate outlet. It was mine as well. I would write things that I would never have said to someone. I gave myself permission to be unedited. 🙂

  2. I’ve just been reading your post and I really don’t know what to say. Everyone has different reasons to write. I write because that is something I really love and can’t really do without. I often feel melancholic, for reasons still unclear, and I often like to take refuge in th worlds I’ve imagined. Wether I’m with other people or alone I sometimes can’t stop myself from drifting to this alternate reality where I can imagine myself being able to do anything.
    I think that’s what made me want to write my stories. The fact that still now I have this imaginary world that follows me everywhere and where I cant go whenever I please. It obsesses me and I find it so interesting that I want to share it with other people. I want to be able to truly give life to that world and its stories.

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