Why I Write
Today is the first day that I will not have a first day of school. I really tried hard to write about that, but really couldn’t breathe, so instead, I decided to write about what I went to school for: English!!!!
(^^ LOL, really though…)
I’m currently working at a restaurant while I try to sort everything out/update my resume with community service projects I did 12 years ago just to make it look more impressive/deny my life. And customers who – (I’m not sure if my persona just screams confused grad, or if they somehow already know) - ask me what I want to do or what I went to school for usually respond to my answer like so: with a sympathetic head tilt, quizzical nodding, an extra dollar in the tip jar, and then of course, there are those who straight out ask: “Why?”
So I shrug and offer my most self-deprecating smile when all I really want to say is: “Because I like to write, have you read anything by Fitzgerald lately, literature is great, and do you want French fries with that?”
But I just figure it’s easier to answer the first way.
I was #blessed with parents who are overwhelmingly supportive, and I could be doing the world’smost inane and useless thing (whatever that may be) and they would still find a way to hand me a gold star. They’ve been so great giving me this “grace” period (a.k.a. staring at the ceiling, crying, eating all of their food, etc.) because everything changed faster than they put the fall line out in the windows, faster than I could have ever imagined that it could have, and like always, I have absolutely no idea how to handle it. The three of us realized a long time ago (when I used to doodle shapes all over my geometry tests…) that by process of elimination (and I should probably the mention the 67% I got on my chemistry final…) that writing was it (and by 67%, I mean 47%...).
Meanwhile, the customers at the register still stare at me with a horrified expression that reads: “But writing won’t fix the economy/solve equations/save lives.”
And then I throw food at them.
Kidding; (well, once I spilled shrimp cocktail on someone’s lap but that was an accident) ((or was it…)), but God, don’t you hate it when people give you that look more than anything else on the planet?!?!
I have journals from ninth grade filled with pages on how a guy wouldn’t text me back. I have journals from senior year of college filled with pages on how a guy wouldn’t text me back. If these journals ever got out I would have to move to Mars, probably further, and yes, even though I ignored all of the what seemed like brilliant advice that I wrote to myself (and then proceeded to make the worst decisions I could have possibly made anyway), it became something bigger, became more than the act of writing, became something else.
I wish I could say that I grew up knowing that this was what I wanted to do, and even that I knew how to do it. But writing has always been something that I needed more than something that I wanted, that kind of therapy that everybody creates their own type of, whether they realize it or not. Because there are so many things that I’ve felt and so many things that I’ve wanted to say, but for reasons I have no idea how to explain, I couldn’t find the words. So I had to learn to write them down, every totally dramatic and totally vulnerable one of them.
And those who know what they’re doing and have that solid plan; they’re so lucky. But I think those that don’t yet (and maybe I’m just saying this because I’m one of them), I think they’re even luckier. So no, my B.A. in English will probably never save a life. But writing, on countless occasions and in so many ways, has saved mine (and has saved money on actual therapy…).
Sylvia Plath once said: “I write only because there is a voice within me that will not be still.”
And I figured that was as good a reason as any.