For some reason last night, I decided I am a writer. I’ve been writing this blog for two years (!!!), I follow other bloggers who I consider to be writers, I read a lot about writing, I read a lot of stuff written by *actual* writers, and I dream about one day earning money for something I’ve written, but I’ve never before seriously considered myself a writer.
I’m not sure what changed, except that I think that *I* changed.
With age comes a bit of wisdom, at least where it comes to knowing yourself. With age also comes a bit of a ‘devil may care’ attitude. Now, phrases like “devil may care” might actually SHOW my age, but that’s okay too. Because at my age, you really just start to embrace who you are and stop worrying about how who you are might be perceived by who others are trying to portray themselves to be. In other words – F*&# It.
So I did something drastic: I changed my Twitter profile to describe myself as a writer.
I know, it’s wildly absurd to consider this significant, but for some reason I changed that profile last night and I felt a weird and giddy sense of accomplishment. It’s not because anything I’ve written has become insanely popular or even that I’ve amassed a devoted legion of followers; not for nothing, I think I’ve got a nice little contingent of people who have come to know me through my writing these last few years and I really love that. But I’m humble and realistic about my little corner of the internet.
I think it felt so good because it was kind of like finding myself finally at the point of being something I never thought I would be. People actually read stuff that I write. Sometimes they click a button to indicate that they like it. Sometimes they even comment on it! To hear someone’s thoughts in response to something you’ve written is nothing short of awesome.
It’s a bit like stumbling through a maze only to turn a corner and realize that you are actually much closer to the center than you imagined you would be. If I could go back to the beginning and give my younger self some advice, it would be:
- Get in that maze! I spent so long circling around the outside, not sure if I wanted to enter and terrified of getting lost inside that I wasted a *lot* of time.
- Trust your instincts; sometimes the twists and turns seem to be backtracking, but those are the points where we haven’t trusted our internal compass and seem to keep circling around to check where we’re going. Just go there for heaven’s sake!
- Keep searching and don’t worry if people think you’re lost. If someone is looking at you it’s probably because they’re trying to figure out how they might get started on their own maze.
- Bring snacks. And wine. You’re going to need them.