I have always loved writing. In Junior High, one of my stories was published in a booklet called “Pegasus” (which I think might just be an Upper Michigan thing, but I’m not sure) and I thought I was a pretty big deal. I would stay up all hours of the night and just type away about whatever was flashing through my mind. It was a release.
After my assault, I felt like therapy wasn’t enough for me, so I started writing again. I became obsessed with my brain and learning about how it worked and why I was able to dissociate and how it protects me. I started to journal my deepest and darkest thoughts. After every page I felt more and more free, as if the chains were coming off, one by one. I was writing for me.
Then I remembered my high school counselor (Mrs. P). I was in her office at least once a week, sobbing about everything from being bullied to my parents divorce. She kept me safe. She made me feel like I was going to be OK. Since then, being a high school counselor was my dream. (Well, that’s not entirely true. My first dream was to become a famous actress but that didn’t pan out). I just knew I wanted to help people, the way that she helped me and I thought I could really make a difference in the lives of teenagers who were struggling with trauma and self esteem issues. I wanted to share my pain with young girls who thought they just weren’t going to make it through high school. I knew I had a lot to contribute. I’ve had a lot of experiences.
Well, that dream didn’t pan out either. Life is funny that way. But yet, I knew there was something I could do. I could help people in some way. So I started writing and making my words public. It was very scary, because I wasn’t sure I wanted people to know what actually happened to me. It was taboo. I also didn’t want people thinking I’m crazy. But after my first post was published by Positive Outlooks and people started to tell me how much I had helped them, I truly felt as if I had found my calling.
Then people started “liking” my article and sharing it. Thousands of people shared it, which means they were moved by it. It was reaching all of these people and they were touched by it. I couldn’t believe it. This is what I am meant to be doing. I might not be a school psychologist with a degree, but I’m helping people, even if it’s only in a very small way. Maybe my words made a small difference in someone’s life. Maybe I could inspire.
So what started out as “totally selfish” writing, turned into something bigger than I ever imagined and it’s been such a blessing to me. I’m done worrying about whether or not I sound crazy, I’m sure I do! But it’s my truth, it’s my reality. And if one person takes comfort in my words, if one person can relate to what I’m writing and feel a little less alone, then it’s absolutely worth it.