While surfing the web recently, I came across a profile in which someone listed under the category career: "aspiring writer...aren't we all?"
Suddenly, I felt very small--a tiny fish in an enormous pond of people who love to write just as much as I do. That's one reason why I can't seem to take the leap and try to publish some of my work because I'm afraid it would fall on deaf ears (or at least on the top of some very tall stack in an "In" box somewhere.)
There's just one thing that keeps me going, though. Passion. There are a lot of things I love in life. My family, my friends, a good movie, the way the grass smells after a good rain--all of these things would be on the list. But, there is something that I eagerly anticipate each new day...the chance to experience something and write about it.
There are times when I'll see something that would seem ordinary to most; but to me, I find such beauty in it that I almost get this burning sensation inside until I can write it down on a piece of paper or blog about it. Sometimes, it won't be a new experience; instead, it's a memory that comes flooding back and I'm afraid I'll never remember again unless I write it down.
For me, it's not really about getting published (although I'll admit that is one of my biggest dreams.) I just know how life can change in an instant and it can be a security blanket to have memories in writing to fall back on.
When my Mom died a few years ago, my sister and father and I came across a big blue binder full of poetry and short stories she had written. That night, we laid on the floor and cried as we read through years of thoughts that she may have considered "insignificant" at one time...but, to us-- it was gold. She was no longer with us but her voice was. Her memories were. Her humor was there in print and that book has been an enormous comfort to me since that day.
One of the things I came across in the book was a Gratitude Journal Mom had started after being inspired by an episode of Oprah. It was dated July 16, 1997 and she shared the following:
"...Personally, my "public" goals have all been met. I manintained a solid, loving marriage. We have raised two daughters in an atmosphere of love and stability. They are each bright, successful, happy young women making places for themselves in the world. I have all this to be grateful for, and I am. My heart overflows everyday, thanking God for His bountiful grace and for the blessings He has bestowed upon my life."
I can assure you that my Mom had no idea how special those words would become on a cold, rainy night in March 2003. That is one reason I write. If something I observe or think about can be written down and one day inspire, comfort or simply make someone smile...then my life will have been well lived.