“There’s no way I’m going to cry during a writing meetup, how silly.”
Those were my famous last words before I cried during a writing meetup, twice even!
Being excessively busy with trying to figure out emerging adulthood, I never really had a chance to stop and think about whether or not I was traversing towards the goals I wanted in life. When I had the chance opportunity to drop by an established online writing group, the first prompt completely caught me off guard.
“In 5 minutes, using only verbs and adjectives, how would you describe yourself?”
Letting the words flood the page, I stopped at the 5 minute mark and stared in completely shock at the aftermath of my brainstorm. The person I described myself to be, was nothing like the person I wanted to become nor the cheerful and pleasant persona others identified me as. Panic might have been the first emotion I could remember, because just the sheer amount of detetable and odious things I wrote about myself petrified me. Where the :dolphin: did all these emotions come from? Where was it all going wrong? Have I just been a fraud and a liar this whole time? What… is going to become of me?
Fast forward to next week’s writing meetup and I get another innocuous writing prompt that unraveled more of the self I was neglecting.
“In 5 minutes, try to describe the first memory you can recall. Not in words, but just in feelings alone.”
To be blunt, I can barely recall anything before my first year in the corporate world. What I originally shrugged off as something unimportant, made me slowly start to realize that I was oppressing something. But I had an amazing childhood free of dilemmas, what traumatic events could I possibly be running from?
And therein lies the issue.
Trying my absolute best to recall something from my past, I began to realize that I used to be… happy. All the earliest memories of my childhood felt simple, carefree, warm, and if I were to use a color to contain all these feelings, I would describe it as yellow. The further along the memories I traversed, the more of these childhood feelings began to fade away. A once prominent bright yellow began to lose it flare and slowly start to drip into sadder and sadder colors, transitioning from blue and eventually into gray, truly falling into the trope when something loses color in this world, it loses meaning. When I really paused to reflect on my mental recollection, I remembered last week’s prompt, and suddenly it all clicked.
I began to hate myself because I never allowed myself to fail, and became a miserable self-indulgent wreck because of it.
My childhood never challenged me, my parents said I was amazing, and whenever ANYTHING put me out of my comfort zone, I would immediately scurry back into a place where everything was okay. The more I ran from the chances to try something new and possibly fail, the more I began to miss out on life, and the more I began to feel empty inside. The worst part was, I didn’t even REALIZE I felt this way. Not until I took a deep breath and finally had a chance to take stock of what was silently falling apart around me.
With this new insight unlocked, a new color began to shine within me. White, a color as pure as snow, untainted when freshly formed, exceedingly unique in every flake, and beautiful in its own rite after travelers make their difficult journeys across it. I had a new mission and was DETERMINED now to see it through, which was to try everything, be okay with failing miserably, and achieving greatly no matter what the outcome was. I pressed the purple button on this workshop on a complete whim, and I’m glad I gave myself the chance to see if it was really worth it.