A million years ago I started writing a column in my church’s newspaper…up until that point I didn’t think I had any real skills. Math and science bored me, history was interesting if it happened upon a topic that I liked and well, I took German just to be different. A trend that I continue to this day (clearly seen by my choice of football teams).
But for some reason I had a way with words, turning boring little tidbits into funny commentary and the adults noticed…so for once I wasn’t being judged on my propensity of crushes but an actual skill. And as I was told by grown ups, find a skill you do well, bonus if you love it and focus on that. I wrote for the school newspaper, had articles returned to me bleeding red with corrections but I wasn’t deterred. For once I took the criticism and challenged myself to improve. And by the way, I do have to give major props to my Chemistry teacher, he spoke up when I was struggling in Chem class and agreed that while I was a bright kid, chemistry wasn’t my thing and that’s okay.
I wrote for my junior college paper, became editor and then moved on to write briefly at MTSU but by then I understood that journalists are a dime a dozen and my skills would be better served in the public relations arena. What they don’t mention very often in college though is how hard it is to get a job in your field, the pay sucks and for some reason the adult world doesn’t really care about your passion.
Then this crazy thing called the internet came out and many years down the road after Son kept saying I had to write a book about my dating experiences with Bubba did I finally decide to blog. I tried a few versions, finally after a particularly rough end to a relationship I came up with this blog. Five years, many posts, creating boundaries when my parents started reading it…and well, I’ve learned a lot. I’ve been working on that book off and on for years now and umm, well…
Chandler was the first real relationship, happening in real time on here and by then I was in a groove when it came to writing. Of course he got me, in a way no man has ever got me and he stayed on my ass about writing. He encouraged, tormented and harassed me until I had written a post. Because that’s what you do when you love someone and you know that it is an outlet and passion. Of course we bumped heads a few times because I could write about my feelings but not talk to him because I have walls up people. But we figured it out, often times me writing while he was breathing down my neck and before I hit publish, he read it. It worked. And he got those walls down.
Then he was gone and the. Nine months later he was really gone and I struggled but I still wrote. Then I moved back home, Nashville, how I love thee. And it went okay the first couple of months, I still wrote, I still worked everything out through my words but then Allan happened.
Throughout the whole Allan debacle I questioned why I wasn’t writing and I came up with the following reasons: he has a kid, he broke my heart, I was embarrassed by what had happened, oh wow, everything is how I want it but don’t want to jinx it, I was busy, he has a kid and I’m not the kid’s parent, so don’t want to share stuff on that, oh my goodness he broke my heart again, depression, embarrassment, oh looky, he came back, we are happy!, don’t want to jinx it, busy, kid and holy shit, again? Really? Okay brief makeup and welcome 40, crap that’s depressing and well, fuck he broke my heart again. I’m 40 and yet still making the same mistake over and over and well….I was embarrassed.
Finally after a few months of learning more of how much I was a fool, working through it, dealing with stress with work…I started to dip my toes back into the water. This isn’t about hits, about being the next blog darling or an editor coming to me saying they just have to have me on staff, it’s about me being me. Doing something that I love and am kind of decent at instead of just sucking it up and only doing my day job. It’s been a challenge and I’ve questioned myself about why I couldn’t write when I was with Allan. Was it because I was just so happy that I didn’t feel the need? Umm, that couldn’t be it because I was really happy with Chandler. And a wise friend pointed out that maybe Allan didn’t fulfill me in every way that made me want to write.
I don’t know the answer to that only that I can state with certainty that I didn’t have the words to write when I was with him. Maybe he wasn’t a muse or maybe I just poured everything I had into him that there was nothing else, but a huge chunk goes to embarrassment. I did nothing wrong but I felt like a failure and stupid to keep on keeping on with him. I had the ultimate desire to be “normal” and be like all of my friends. I decided that being different wasn’t the way to go but this summer has changed me. And above all to accept that being different, not fitting that mold and being that dork with a hint of cool was far more enjoyable than worrying about some boy.
I’m a football obsessed, dorky girl who likes to cook, read and write. The writing gives me an outlet when I really prefer not to hash things out by chatting about things. Plus, only I could really put a funny spin on the shit that happens to me, be it by my own choices or those around me. Will I ever finish that book? I hope so. The dedication kicks ass and the stories are funny but organizing it and making it cohesive is my challenge. And maybe one day I’ll be on some awards stage accepting the award for best original screenplay for a movie. And go on Howard Stern’s show to let him dissect me, he’s a wonderful interviewer (but my parents and their friends can’t listen to it).
Okay, that last part is delusional but hey, if it inspires me to write a book that only five people read, I’m okay with that.