When I was in elementary school, I wanted to be an Author.
(To me, the magic of the position demanded the capital letter that I now know is unnecessary.)
For career day, I labored over a poster-board-sized drawing of myself as an Author, hunched over a desk, grasping a pen, writing my heart out.
But the dream remained a dream. I was never good at committing to things: planning them out, dreaming about how my life would look when I started, yes; actually starting, no. I’ve saved numerous documents containing “novel ideas,” stared longingly at writing courses, and envied friends who just seemed to be able to do it. But executing hasn’t always been easy for me.
I can see now that I was scared of starting, scared of committing to something that would take hard work and that might not bring me the joy I craved. I was scared I didn’t have enough time, didn’t have the talent. So instead of finding out, I hid. I insulated myself in layers of other things—books I needed to read first, plans I needed to make first, the person I needed to become before I could write.
But lately, as I have focused hard on simplifying and refining, I’m finding patches of space. Space in my home, in my life, and in my heart—spaces that I think are ready to be filled with writing. When I read pieces by my favorites (Erin Loechner, Joshua Fields Milburn, Erin Boyle, and the lovely Rebecca Parker Payne, an incredible woman I’m overjoyed to call a friend), I think I want to do that. I have stories like that in my heart. But more than that, I think I can do that. I can get started. I have the space and the desire and the ability. And that's huge.
I think I’ll sit at my desk for a bit, pen in hand, and just see what happens. Just get started and see where it takes me.
What about you?
Is there something you’ve been longing to do but have been telling yourself you’re not ready for? Something that has been lurking behind the daily chores and the overdue-to-do list, lingering in the time you spend scrolling through Instagram or Pinterest? (Yep, I'm guilty of all of those.)
What harm would come from dedicating an hour to dreaming and an hour to just getting started? If you hate it, if you realize it’s not what you wanted all along (see item 4 on this post), you can move on, secure in the knowledge that you tried. No one has to know, or you can make it public as I have—the choice is yours.