When I was 10, I wanted to be a writer (and artist). I drew and wrote constantly – making up tiny short stories pretty much every day, spending hours in my head, creating illustrations, doodling, imagining life as someone else, and planning elaborate ways to run away to the worlds I’d created. I spent a lot of time in other people’s worlds, too – I always tried passing in between two trees to find out if there would be a magic portal to Narnia, and buried my head in every book I could find. Back then I was a rather melancholy child, and today it’s hard to feel like much has changed. Except that now I’m grown and in control, and still somehow feeling just as powerless. I am unhappy today. I was unhappy yesterday, too.
But this post is about how my current career intersects with my 10 year old self’s wishes, and honestly, it’s pretty connected. More so than most people’s I’d guess. I haven’t gone completely off course. After all, as a marketing strategist, I imagine and write for a living. My favorite part about my job is figuring out who the audience is, and what they want to hear. I love feeling like I’ve made someone’s life better by impacting their day, if only just a little. I try never to create things that don’t have some use – whether it’s a laugh or a smile, a nod of understanding, or hopefully a real action – a click, a contribution, an entry.
It’s just that I wanted more. And today I woke up with a headache and a stomach ache, and a general feeling of disappointment. When I was 10, I thought that 30 year old me would be a writer, and would be living a life of goodness and light and joy and magic. Instead, I’m living alone, stuck in my own head, surrounded by people that I either can’t talk to at all, or share secret messages with through this blog. It’s like writing in invisible ink, in a way. I just hope that the right people turn on the black light and write something back. I should probably stop hoping that someone will be able to help me. I’m fully capable of helping myself. I’m just so scared.
There are three things that I need to do: write a letter, make a phone call, have a conversation. Each of them is more frightening than the last. Without them, I will go nowhere, and continue being unhappy. With them, I will be tossed out of the airlock and into uncertainty. Honestly, I’m a fan of uncertainty – it holds the promise of magic, if only for a second. A short promise is better than none at all.