That’s what we think when we feel vulnerable about the things we make. Our immediate response is to be overly critical of…our macaroni plate artwork/dissertation abstract/blog post/gift we made for someone. We say, Oh god my painting looks funny, OR, if I am annoyed by other people’s lack of margin space on their blog what are they going to think about mine? 😐
These thoughts are not only annoying to write or read, but they are so self-deprecating they make us want to give up altogether. I want to give up on this blog already. Kidding. That means that I’d give up on YOU…audience that may or may not consist of future employers, close friends, and family (Hi Meemee!). But this type of thinking is not self-loving or healthy. It is destructive.
Perhaps we should be proud of ourselves instead, for trying.
Proud. Of ourselves. For trying?
And if you realize this is some crazy way for me to have a conversation with myself about new blog pride–you’re right! But really. I’m proud of myself for doing this. And I don’t know why it took so long. So long for me to get the courage. For adulthood to breakthrough. For me to realize what is safe to post online about my personal life and what’s not.
A voice that has followed me throughout each blog iteration has been my friend and role-model, Ayesha Siddiqi, when she wrote, “We need to stop waiting for permission to write” in The Guardian. Her bravery to challenge the status quo with anything she writes is outstanding. I look up to her. I hope I can do the same.
Last weekend I met an individual named Nathan at Bluejacket brewery in Navy Yard. The bar was crowded. Patrons were huddled around televisions, watching women run in the Rio Olympics. Nathan and I sparked up conversation as he sat alone at the end of our communal table. He watched the races intensely.
I asked, “Are you a runner?”
He said, “I like to run but I’m not a runner.”
“Why do you need an institution to let you say you’re a runner or not,” I said. “You like to run? You run often? You’re a runner. Just like I’m an athlete. I go the the gym on weekdays. I like going. I’m an athlete. I also like to write. I don’t publish online, but I keep a journal and write for myself…”Nathan smiled.
When I left my friends at the bar, I realized that maybe I was waiting for some kind of institution to tell me that I was a writer. That I was waiting for graduate school, or whatever internship to tell me that I was a journalist.
I am a writer. And I’m very proud of that.