The National Day on Writing is on October 20th. I wrote this in honor of that day. You can read more about it here.
I write because if I didn’t, I would certainly not be here today. I write because it’s the best and cheapest form of therapy out there. I write because I have something important to say, even if it’s something as simple as, “I’m angry”, or “I’m frustrated” or. “I’m so proud”. I write because I don’t know how better to express myself, it’s the way I deal with the world around me. I remember writing pages and pages of letters in high school, it’s probably the first time that I remember feeling like putting pen to paper would solve something. I wrote to boyfriends, my parents, my friends. I wrote to heal broken hearts, to soothe my angry soul, to process my parent’s divorce. I wrote because I thought people might think me crazy if I told them aloud the things that went on in my head. Now, I don’t care what people think of me – I know I’m crazy. But, now that I’m not an angsty teenager anymore (I’m more like an angsty adult) I still write to process things: my relationships, my marriage, my children, the path I’m on at any given moment.
I write because one day I want my kids to look back and know that what they said and did mattered to me. That I wrote down their experiences and I laughed with them and at them and I noticed all the little things that they did. I write because earlier this week Lucy asked me why kids remember so much and grown ups don’t. I told her it’s because adults have more years and more memories clogging their brains, but really I write so that I DON’T forget everything that happens – even the little, seemingly unimportant day to day things.
I write because some days I think if I say the words out loud that I write down on paper, I might curl up and cry. I write because I’m one of those people who look around me at the grocery store and thinks, “I’m the ONLY ONE who knows what I’m thinking right now.” I think about that a lot – how when I look over at my husband I only see what I see – I will never know what is going on in his head – even if I think I do. It’s such a lonely thought and so I write because it keeps me from losing my mind. I write because I’m so busy that writing seems a little like I’m talking to a friend – something I don’t get to do nearly enough anymore. I write because it’s in my DNA. It’s in the very fiber of my being. I write because I can't imagine what I would do if I couldn't.