Each time I sit down to write a post for this blog, I wrestle with finding the “right” words for the page. I find it difficult to decide which voice to write in, and I’m never quite sure how much I should edit because I fret over sounding authentic. I think about the unintended authority that may lay in my words, overly aware that someone might take my voice to heart. Overall, I intend to be careful, and sometimes the emotional toll feels immense.
This week I procrastinated harder than usual, never making space in my days to write. To be fair, I’ve been busy, overwhelmed, and distracted by the sun in the sky. But here it is Saturday, my post 6 (now 18) days overdue and I have barely started to write.
I compose my drafts first on paper, the ideas birthed (most of the time) by a .07 mechanical pencil and my hand. I began writing as a child by filling up journals and notebooks with poetry and thoughts. I have always struggled with getting big ideas to flow straight to the computer screen. Writing on paper has been integral to the development of my “self,” the part of me that is expressed through language and emotion. The view of the world you see through me.
Sometimes I think the reason I can’t find my voice is due to my process, but perhaps, right now, I’m unsure of what I sound like (which has been a recurring theme in my writing for this blog). The last five years have been a journey of learning how to pick myself up and keep walking with the pieces I do have. Through my education, I have learned to notice the way my behaviors and emotions have been impacted by trauma and changing those behaviors has been both strenuous and rewarding.
I think one of the hardest parts has been learning how to slow down and think new questions while also validating my voice has importance. Often, I want to clam up and stop talking, but my voice is important. Not because of the need to share it or even the need to be heard, but important because of the ripples it has the potential to create, no matter my intention. Slowing down to prevent using exclusive language is hard work.
The transition from listener to speaker, or student to teacher, has me feeling insecure. This process is vulnerable, and I have to keep reminding myself that it doesn’t matter what anyone thinks while remembering to always be gentle (with both myself and others). I’m certain that my need for approval and validation is a piece of this puzzle.
This topic has been difficult to write about; hard to wrap my head around. I have questions rolling around in my head that are intersecting with my core sense of being. Where do approval and validation merge with authority and understanding? How do I change my perspective so I’m not wrought with feelings of inadequacy whenever I go to type on the page? How do I get comfortable with being uncomfortable? And when will I start to worry less?