I don’t know when, exactly, this became hard again. After a brief hiatus last year, it never really felt the same to come back to a blank document and write about how I felt (as if that’s something worth reading in the first place). It’s not lack of feeling that’s been keeping me away, nor is it a fear of the words that I would put to those feelings. At some point, I became more afraid of what people thought of me for what I wrote—my parents, my friends, even people I didn’t know—and that my voice would taint their perception of me, or get me into trouble that I didn’t need. I had (have) this reoccurring image of everyone whom has ever complimented me, or encouraged me to continue with this blog, turning around and laughing about it three seconds later. The bigger part of me is still struck silent by that image.
So why this—why now?
A series of events. First, a gnawing feeling that’s had me itching to write for far too long. Not essays, not shitty 4am poetry, not screenplays or tirades or petty thank-you’s. Just writing that brings me back to the creation of this blog, and the purpose it served me—ME. Not the rest of the world that might be looking in.
Second, a piece of conversation I overheard while checking in people at a downtown yoga studio.
“We’re all the same, underneath everything. The parts we don’t like about other people—those are the places where they’re just rubbing on old scars you’ve built up. They’re surfacing what’s been scabbed over, and we’re reacting to that pain.”
I took that home with me and mulled it over for the rest of the night. I reached around to the backs of my legs, my palms, my pointer fingers and felt the scars there as though they were hours-old scrapes. I am lucky, I am loved, but I still know pain. To think that my interactions with others are so affected—that my dislike, or my animosity toward another person is still affected by a scratch someone else left years ago—it’s empowering. I’m still struggling to fully realize this philosophy that she imparted upon me (yogi’s have some of the best wisdom), but I’ve no doubt that beneath it lies a great power in both diagnosing our weaknesses and chronicling the stories that we weave between each other.
Third. A birthday gift from a friend—printed notebook paper covered with deep red hibiscus (unknowingly, she picked my favorite flower) and thick note cards embossed with a large “E”. She encouraged me to own up to my writing, to stop giving up on my words simply because I was a little afraid. She took my old wounds and split them open, then reminded me how I healed them all in the first place. (Thank you, Sam.)
And fourth. A coffee cup at 6am that caught the first bit of sunshine peeking through the dense morning fog. The words “What do you stay awake for?,” and a reminder that this will always be here, waiting for me to come back.
So here I am. Judgment be dammed (we all know I’ll be anxious about this for the next five hours but I like the romanticism of how not giving a shit sounds). I can’t promise that I’ll stick around for good, or even for the next week. But I can promise myself to be open and honest, to let myself feel my scars and to remember why and how they healed. I can taste my passion for writing, for words—the importance of selection, rhythm, rise and fall. This is something I know, something familiar, comforting and nurturing. This is a part of me, and although that doesn’t make it any less easy, at least I know it’s worth it.