A little more than a month ago, a friend asked me to write a guest post on her blog.
I did it.
I have been more excited about writing than I have been in quite some time. Though I wrote a short essay rather than the fiction and poetry that I had been writing most recently, I felt something that I haven’t truly felt when writing in a while.
I remember the first time that I became engaged in writing. It was in fourth grade and a teacher used to give the classroom writing prompts. For extra credit you could write stories as inspired by these prompts.
In fifth grade, I remember working for a while, poring over encyclopedia entries writing a play about Christopher Columbus, my contribution to a group project.
In sixth grade I remember writing something for class that my teacher called insightful. Then she asked whether I had written it all by myself, which I had.
In tenth grade, I had an English class that required students to do journaling. I remember the pride that I felt upon filling up a notebook with my thoughts. That teacher encouraged me to look into opportunities to write outside of school.
However, I never took writing that seriously in high school. You see, with some aptitude in mathematics and science, I took writing for granted and felt that picking up those math and science credits were more important.
I stopped writing for extra credit. I started doing extra math problems. I started writing programs for my graphing calculator for a challenge, asking the next level math teacher what his extra credit was.
In college, however, I realized that I was more interested in history, and interested in writing. I danced again with that tender partner.
The one class in which I earned an A+ was a play writing class.
After college, I joined a writing group, there writing poetry and fiction. I filled more notebooks. I started the day writing.
Life happened, and writing got me through some hard times.
Life happened, and I fell away from the habit.
I picked up other projects.
I learned dances. I ran races. I worked on my career. I raise my son.
And then I wrote that essay. It felt like making eye-contact across an otherwise unexciting crowd to see that dance partner with whom you always feel at home. You know that once the music starts that the two of you will fall into your familiar back-and-forth. You wonder why you haven’t been dancing.
You resolve to dance more.
And here I am.