Why I Write

Why I Write

As a science major, I get asked a lot why I write for the Odyssey if I'm not getting anything out of it. I thought I'd finally explain why.

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Since I was little, I've always had a creative mind. I was making up stories in my head, and acting them out with dolls or just with my imagination.

I started multiple novels with these grandiose plots, and I would get a chapter or two in and then want to start a new one. (So if anyone wants to buy any American Girl and Titanic crossover novels, let me know and I'll give you the creative liberties.)

In fourth grade, we had to write a chapter book, and I remember writing and illustrating it all myself and all these years later, I remember that one project for English.

All through grade school and high school, I would be writing little stories. My friends and I participated in Camp Nanowrimo in August and we would race to try and write 50,000 words in that month for a novel. For one of my college apps, I was asked to grab their attention in 100 words, so I decided to start a horror novel. (Yes, I realize now that may not have been the best course of action, but oh well, it was a blast!) Once college apps were done, I decided to expand off of my application essay, and I wrote the first two or three chapters of that story.

One day I'll go back to it because I know where I want it to go. Today, sadly, is not that day.

When I started college, the first two years were different. Even though I was taking classes where I was reading a lot, I wasn't writing for fun, and I wasn't telling stories even when I was writing. It was all for assignments.

As more and more of my Facebook feed became my friends posting Odyssey articles that they had written or that they liked, I became curious. A. What was this platform? B. Who could join it? and C. Where did it come from?

I remember telling the then president of Odyssey Chicago that I wanted an outlet for my thoughts, and I think that is the basic reason. I wanted to be able to get my ideas and my words out there. So I guess that's the long and short of it.

I write for me mainly, but I also write to try and get better at expressing what's going on in my head. Who knows, maybe one day I'll finish a novel.

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I Ghosted My Old Self For 5 Months In An Effort To Reevaluate My Life

My life fell apart faster than a drunk dude approaching a Jenga stack.

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BREAKING (not fake) NEWS: It's true, you have to hit your lowest before hitting your highest.

I want to share my lowest with you, and I'm almost ashamed to say it had nothing to do with the loss of both of my parents. I like to think I handled that like a warrior.

Turns out I didn't, and the hurt I've been burying from that hit me all at once, the same moment my life fell apart faster than a drunk dude approaching a Jenga stack.

My life flipped upside down overnight back in August. I had my heart broken shattered, lost two very important friendships that I thought were with me until the end, lost my 9-5 job, my health took a hit stronger than a boulder, and I was absolutely lost. For the first time, ever, I let go of the reigns on my own life. I had no idea how to handle myself, how to make anyone around me happy, how to get out of bed or how to even begin the process of trying to process what the f*ck just happened. I was terrified.

Coming from the girl who never encountered a dilemma she couldn't fix instantaneously, on her own, with no emotional burden. I was checked out from making my life better. So I didn't try. I didn't even think about thinking about trying.

The only relatively understandable way I could think to deal with anything was to not deal with anything. And that's exactly what I did. And it was f*cking amazing.

I went into hiding for a week, then went on a week getaway with my family, regained that feeling of being loved unconditionally, and realized that's all I need. They are all I need. Friends? Nah. Family. Only. Always.

On that vacation, I got a call from the school district that they wanted me in for an interview the day I come home. It was for a position that entailed every single class, combined, that I took in my college career. It was a career that I had just gotten my degree for three months before.

I came home and saw my doctor and got a health plan in order. I was immediately thrown into the month-long hiring process for work. I made it a point to make sunset every single night, alone, to make sure I was mentally caught up and in-check at the same exact speed that my life was turning. I was not about to lose my control again. Not ever.

Since August, I have spent more time with family than ever. I've read over 10 new books, I've discovered so much new music, I went on some of my best, the worst and funniest first dates, I made true, loyal friends that cause me zero stress while completely drowning me in overwhelming amounts of love and support, I got back into yoga, and I started that job and damn near fell more in love with it than I ever was for the guy I lost over the summer.

But most importantly, I changed my mindset. I promised myself to not say a single sentence that has a negative tone to it. I promised myself to think three times before engaging in any type of personal conversation. I promised myself to wake up in a good mood every damn day because I'm alive and that is the only factor I should need to be happy.

Take it from a girl who knew her words were weapons and used them frequently before deciding to turn every aspect of her life into positivity — even in the midst of losing one of my closest family members. I have been told multiple times, by people so dear to me that I'm "glowing." You know what I said back? F*ck yes I am, and I deserve to.

I am so happy with myself and it has nothing to do with the things around me. It's so much deeper than that, and I'm beaming with pride. Of myself. For myself.

I want to leave you with these thoughts that those people who have hurt me, left me, and loved me through these last couple of months have taught me

Growth is sometimes a lonely process.
Some things go too deep to ever be forgotten.
You need to give yourself the permission to be happy right now.
You outgrow people you thought you couldn't live without, and you're not the one to blame for that. You're growing.
Sometimes it takes your break down to reach your breakthrough.

Life isn't fair, but it's still good.

My god, it's so f*cking good.

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6 Things I'm Attempting To Incorporate Into My Life In 2019

The key word here is "attempting" ... nobody's perfect!

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Overall, 2018 was a successful year full of growth and maturity, and I have high hopes for the next 12 months. Instead of trying to top 2018 with some irrational, cliché, and overdone resolutions that will inevitably fall through the cracks of my busy schedule, however, I've decided to simply attempt to be mindful of a few things in 2019 that, if continuously conscious of, will most likely result in a successful trip around the sun.

1. Mental Health Matters! 

Throughout the past few months this fact has made itself more clear in my life, as I have experienced what it's like to have a not-so-healthy mental state. It's extremely important to find the time to give your mind the rest, peace, and therapy it needs in order to be successful in the rest of your endeavors. My goal, as I'm sure is everyone's goal, is to be happy. I firmly believe happiness stems from a healthy mindset. So, I'm dedicating 2019 to finding ways to feed and protect that healthy mindset.

2. The Goal Is Happiness! 

Like I said, happiness is usually what everyone is striving for, but it tends to be sacrificed and pushed aside. So in 2019, I'm saying if it doesn't make me happy, then it's not worth it! Basically for me, this just translates into making sure I don't stress over the little things, working on my positivity, and spreading more kindness than anything else!

3. Use Your Voice!

It is a rare occasion when I voice my discomfort or anxieties to people other than my close friends and family. This year, I'm working on using my voice to get me to where I want, and need, to be! Gone are the days where I'm too shy and nervous to voice my opinions and ask questions.

4. Surround Yourself With Good People! 

2017 and 2018 were the years where I found my truest and dearest friends. I not only learned what a true friend is, but I was also challenged in my loyalty and ability to reciprocate the love my friends have shown me. Because of this, I'm doing the best I can to make sure I don't lose the strong friendships I've made, and also to be open to the endless possibilities of friendships that exist outside the walls of my comfort zone.

5. Technology Detox!

After a challenging assignment requiring me to attempt a 24-hour electronic media fast, I realized how attached I am to my electronics. Though a lot of this attachment is required solely based upon the age and technological scene we live in, I'm striving towards lessening my electronic usage in order to connect more with the social world, rather than the "social media" world.

6. Early Bird Gets the Worm! 

This one may sound silly, but will undoubtedly pose a tedious challenge to my life. I love my sleep, and this winter break has shown me that my love for my bed can sometimes trump any other activities I have planned for the day. My goal for 2019 is to become a morning-ish person. Getting out of bed can be the hardest part of my day, so this year I'd like to have my cup of coffee in hand before 9 o'clock (except on weekends, of course!).

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