From that challenge, I started incorporating free writing into an almost daily practice. Then I got a little braver and started reading some pieces out loud to friends. When I spoke the last word, I would look up and there would be tears in their eyes. Statements of “I have been feeling this way but didn’t know how to describe it. You just did. Thank you.”
Writing has now become a core piece of my life. I have since published a book of poetry, host creative writing classes in person and online, and coach individuals and professionals on storytelling to create a greater sense of belonging within themselves and those around them.
I compare my practice of writing to a seed – although this journey has taken on limbs of outreach and community that i’ve created, or has taken on roots of a practice for reflection, processing, and healing, it all comes back to this seed: this seed of taking time to show up for myself and just B E. To remove the lines of the box we have been put in and just allow whatever is within me to come out of me and onto the page. To get that inner critic that takes over too often, put it to the side, and tap into my creative unconsciousness.
And that is what I want to share with you. To give yourself permission to show up for yourself, without any attachment to an outcome or the lines of a box. To use writing as a way to discover a little more about yourself and feel brave enough to show yourself a little more authentically to you and those around you. Because after all, we weren’t meant to be human doings, but human beings.
P.S. – I can’t talk about writing without sharing a little poem with you, right? Below is a piece you can find in my book of poetry “From Burn to Bloom”.
YOU HAVE PERMISSION
You have permission to still feel accomplished even if that to do list remains unchecked
You have permission to give up on saving the plant that refuses to survive
You have permission to stare at the wall for some time because it’s all you can do
You have permission to leave that ikea furniture unassembled
You have permission to sleep in and have a slow, lazy morning. That structure can wait
You have permission to scream into the pillow even if you’re unsure why
You have permission to reach for that peanut butter cup instead of the carrot stick
You have permission to thank yourself for washing the clothes but not folding them
You have permission to enjoy the slowness of now instead of the rushed, fleeting moments of before
You have permission to cry at the video of the elderly couple reuniting after a long stay at the hospital
You have permission to lower the armor and say “this is hard”
You have permission to be softer both physically and emotionally
You have permission to feel the feelings
You have permission to embrace this new being you are
And you have permission to love the hell out of this new you