It always makes me feel a bit funny when someone complements me on my writing.
When I was in high school, I took pride in being a girl who loved math and art, but hated writing. I would seriously wait until the very last minute to write a paper, and only then doing it for fear that I would be grounded for life and unable to watch television or talk on the phone ever again.
When I would hand a rough draft of a paper over to my mom for feedback, I would feel the defensiveness bubbling up and taking residence in my body. When she would call me downstairs to review, I could feel my entire body tense up. It was the slowest and most painful walk I ever took.
And then she’d lay the feedback on me.
This is a run on sentence.
Seriously, Emily. What is this?!
What are you even trying to say here?
Go back and do it again. And this time, TRY.
I would burst into tears and run back upstairs, stomping my feet, mumbling profanities under my breath, and slamming my door in a huff. And the, reluctantly, I’d try to do what she said. We would do this dance all night long, as it usually took 3 or 4 tries to get to the point where it was passable.
By senior year, I began referring to my mom as The Paper Nazi (I blame Seinfeld for that one).
When I left for college, I still sent my papers home to be looked over. Fortunately, the critiques became easier and I got more adept at writing. By the time I went off to grad school, writing stopped being a source of stress. Which is a good thing, since I had to write 5 20-page research papers a semester.
As an adult, things have changed.
I still love art, but my love for math has been replaced with a love for writing. I find great comfort in sitting down to pen a post. Journaling helps me come back into myself and figure things out. And newsletters are some of my favorite things to write. I even VOLUNTARILY took on a 100 Days of Blogging challenge to post (write) something for 100 days in a row.
So that story of hating to write — the one that was filled with red lines and dread — has a new ending. Or, at the very least, a new plot line to play around with.
I’m curious: how did you feel about writing as a kid, and how do you feel about it now? Has anything changed?
Image source: Shady Side Academy (and is of yours truly)