One of the first poems I had ever written was when I was twelve. I wrote a quaint little poem about colors and I submitted it to my teacher, Mr. Someone (For lack of a better anonymous name, I will be referring to my teacher as Mr. Someone). Although I did not realize it at the time, I was head over heels for Mr. Someone. See, for a twelve year old girl, who never felt like she fit in anywhere, having a teacher who believed in you was everything. Every morning in Mr. Someone’s english class he would set aside thirty minutes for free writing. He told us we could write anything we wanted. I asked him if I could write a poem and he said, “of course!”
So when he gave me back my poem about colors, I was pleased to see that he loved it! His exact words were “Hey, I’m color blind and I love this!” I was mortified. I had no idea that I had just wrote a whole page worth describing colors and handed it in to a man who could not see them. Despite this minor embarrassment, Mr. Someone continued to encourage me to write poems and so I did. I wrote poems about sadness, happiness, friendship, courage and my fears. What I did not understand at the time was that this teacher had reached in through my invisible wall and turned on this creative engine I did not know existed. I truly loved writing. It gave me a sense of freedom to speak my mind that I never really thought I was capable of. So, then, what happened?
I grew up. I changed. I listened to those who told me creative pursuits would get me no where and make me no money. Instead, I took the advice of those older and wiser than me, also known as my dad, and followed in my mom’s footsteps. I majored in biology and became a laboratory technician. Three and half years later, that is what I am today. But the truth is, I am not happy. If I could go back, I would tell myself to write a different story. In fact, maybe that’s exactly what I am telling myself right now. As I pick up the keyboard and begin to write again, I feel alive. I feel like my truest self. I want to write every day and be free of the confinements I have been locking myself in since I decided that following your passion was not what “normal” people did. It’s okay to not fit in. It’s okay to be different and it is never too late to change.