Friday, April 24, 2015

Who I Am

When I say that I have been a writer my entire life, I'm not exaggerating. I know that I've posted before about my childhood writing aspirations and my first "novel" at age 7. But fictional stories aside, for a long, long time I've been mastering the art of self-reflection. To really understand Arielle, you have to understand that The Cat Widow is just normal course of action for a child who began writing her deepest thoughts and feelings way back in elementary school.

I still own journal entries from when I was as young as 10. 

Decades ago, at 9:39 PM on a Monday (yes, I always wrote the exact date, day, and time), 11 year old Arielle wrote:

"I really want to be different, do something that no one else has ever done."

I'll admit that from time to time, the entries waver on humorously dramatic, such as when I wrote that same year, "Please read this with respect for your childhood." I always chuckle to note how I gave myself directives, as though I knew I would always be the kind of girl who would save her writing and look back many years later. It wasn't out of character for me to write myself a note on the page, addressing myself by name, like a letter to the future. 

But I guess what I'm trying to say is that it is not my experience with tragedy and widowhood that makes me the way I am...or that causes me to write the way I write. Long before I was ever grown up, my old little soul was writing journal entries that are eerily similar to the tone and depth of this very blog. 

At 9:21 pm on a Tuesday in 1996, I was 11 years old, sad and conflicted about something...and I wrote: "What will I do? My good, strong, fearless spirit will help me."

2 days later, I wrote: "There is a saying: 'Those who endure most are rewarded most.'  I believe it is true and I have endured a lot so maybe my reward is yet to come."

I read these sentences from my childhood and realize with some surprise that they could be posted here, in 2015 - on this blog - and still hold the same weight, still resonate, and still be true.

When I was 13, I wrote: "I feel years older." And I've always felt that way. I carry that girl with me every day...the 7 year old, the 11 year old, the 13 year old... she has taught herself along the way to 30 that the act of feeling - really feeling - is the pathway to writing... and by writing, she can be the person she wants to be. 

1 comment:

  1. I still have all my journals, and I wrote every single day in a physical journal from ages 12 through 23. Maybe that's why I feel such a connection when I read your writing-- or maybe it's the need to write in general :)


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