Practice makes...practice?


Hello? Is anyone there?

I know. It's been a long time since I posted anything here. Don't worry...I haven't given up on writing. Quite the opposite, really. Over the past three years I've been writing a lot. I've written about criminal theories, feminism, past events, current events, press releases (how is this still a thing?). I've written analyses on movies and books. I even spent a semester writing as a journalist, which is probably my least favorite type of writing. But none of this writing was blog worthy so, while it certainly helped me to grow as a writer, it also made me forget what it's like to write what's on my mind and my heart.

Enter mild panic, a lot of thinking, and a little hair pulling.

I forgot what it feels like to open myself up to the world of readers. Over the last several months, every time I sat down to write my mind went into overdrive.

Are you sure you want to say that?
Shouldn’t you be more evasive on that point?
Do you really want to tell people that!?

Growing up people often told me I was too sensitive; I cared too much. And that almost always lead to heartache on some level. Eventually I learned a little self preservation and closed the emotional tap to my heart. As I get older that tap suffers the occasional leak, but I still try to maintain the barrier between me and the world as much as I can. 

I am a private person. I take a long time to fully trust people. I'm not an open book (which feels like a funny cliché for a writer to use) and it took me a long time to get to a place where I could give enough of myself through my writing to make any sense of it. But now that I've been away from that kind of writing for so long it feels even scarier to get back there, especially knowing now how much more of myself I need to give to my practice.

But as I've grown a bit as a writer, I've come to understand it's time to let go of my fears and use the years of hidden emotions to better myself. I'm constantly telling my daughter to use her dance as an outlet for her emotions, to tap into her feelings so the audience can fully experience her interpretation of the music. Yet I've been stopping myself from using my writing in the same way. I've refused to allow myself to dig deeper out of fear for what it might expose.

Like anything, writing takes practice. As does reaching deep into the wells of my heart to find the things I've prevented myself from truly feeling. And while this is going to be difficult, I've learned over these last three years that doing hard things is extremely rewarding. I truly believe the saying that you either succeed or you learn something, and that makes it worth it.

So here's to new adventures! Because if we can't look at personal challenges as an adventure, then what are we doing here?