Some of my best writing usually comes from some uncontrollable feelings that I need to just get out on paper. Other great pieces have come from something that I felt was really interesting. I miss writing. I miss having a purpose to my ramblings.
It used to be that I used my opinion column to connect with readers. I’m often socially awkward and slightly introverted so writing helped me express all the things I was afraid to tell people. It helped me grow out of my awkwardness because a reader would often comment on something I wrote and that would be the opener to a more in depth conversation than, say, the ever changing the weather.
I keep looking at the newspaper, the one I used to write for. I wish I could just leave it alone. I wish I didn’t care so I would not see the things I started, the things I designed, get picked up by someone else. The community I poured myself into get less than they deserve.
I started a photo column when I worked there. It was all about the county the newspaper served. I would travel around the county and photograph random scenes, animals, people, and write about what I saw or how it made me feel. Abandoned houses often caught my attention. I liked to imagine what kind of life those houses sheltered and what brought them to their state of disrepair. One time my musings about a photo of a friendly looking abandoned home led to a reader sending me a letter about the life she shared with her husband early in their marriage. She told me about their son they raised there and the good times they had. She shared how she was lost since her husband died. Her husband died on the very day my youngest was born. A coincidence, perhaps, but she was touched by my recognizing the house as a happy place and I was humbled by her letter.
Another reader had lived in that house and shared a photo when it was at its best with fresh white paint an inviting front porch and an large old tree in the front yard. I took the old photo back to the old house and photographed it next to the house as it is today. I then had it developed and mailed it to the lady who shared her experience with me. That kind of connection is what I loved most and miss dearly. It gave my writing purpose.
Sometimes I feel like I let someone rob me of something that was part of me. When I left the paper I left for my health; for my sanity. But the further away I get from the events that led to severing ties to that place the more bitter I become about it all.
These energy vampires, why are they allowed to walk around and affect so many lives in a negative way and they remain seemingly unscathed? It hardly seems fair.
Sometimes I feel like the abandoned homes I’m so fascinated with. Which is hard for the people I love to understand. I should be more fulfilled, right? I have nothing to complain about. Life really is good. I know this. So, I redirect my focus to the people close to me, meanwhile I look for ways to reach out through writing, music, something — anything — because talent shouldn’t sit idle, it needs somewhere to go. Artists need an audience, musicians need someone to listen, writers need readers, and we all need a purpose.