Skip to main content

#100 - Why I Write


 (Are you? I hope so! From pinterest.com.)

We were doing one of our long walks, musing about the future and hopes of doing lots of international travel with our girl. Will she make friends in far off places? How will they stay in touch? The answer is easy in the age of email and social media, where you can Skype or FaceTime someone time zones away and it seems as if they are in front of you. But when I was a girl, I had pen pals. We moved relatively frequently when I was young, and I wanted to keep in touch with my little friends. In some instances, I never saw a friend again, but we kept writing for years. I wrote my grandparents long letters when they sent gifts. I had a diary (early code for a journal) that I kept on and off through adolescence. In high school (still before the internet), I had a long distance boyfriend with whom I exchanged detailed, multi-page letters worthy of poetry. He is fittingly a journalist now, and although I went the way of science and medicine, I still write as well.

In my early career as an engineer, I prided myself on my rare ability to write clearly. My first managers who were far my seniors requested my editing skills for their own documents, and I happily obliged. In graduate school, I thrived during the completion of my Master's Thesis and still have the leather-bound tome full of esoteric equations and experiments and graphs to show for it. I currently provide my technical editing services to my husband's business on a regular basis.

When I decided to go to medical school, I crafted a personal statement that became well recognized by the faculty where I matriculated. It was an ode to our old, beaten down trailer (affectionately named Betty), the vehicle we had used for living and traveling across the country. Although I carried a decent transcript and above average test scores, so did everyone else; I'm convinced that essay got me into medical school amongst a sea of academically talented candidates. And what did I turn to as my main method of stress management during the most difficult times of medical training? My journal. What do I turn to now when I feel overwhelmed with life and want to sort out the many things in my mind? My journal and this blog. If I won the Powerball lottery tomorrow, what would I do with my life? I'd continue learning and writing about what I learn. (Actually, I would do this even if I didn't win the lottery!)

Back to the walk... what I realized that day is that all of these experiences, from childhood letters to research papers, have provided the foundation for my love of writing. It's strong and unique for someone with my chosen career path, but it has served me well for these 40+ years, and I expect it to continue to come through for me until I die.

But why write publicly? Why talk to the WHOLE WORLD about your thoughts, fears, successes, and failures? It exposes you to judgement, criticism, shame... And I would be lying if I said I have never felt any of those things while blogging. The reason to do it is found in these quotes:
Do you know what I learned from writing [How We Die], if I learned nothing else? The more personal you are willing to be and the more intimate you are willing to be about the details of your own life, the more universal you are… - Sherwin Nuland
Whenever you learn something new and want to retain it, you must teach it.... Share your experience and give what you have received. - Denise Druce
People register with the transformation, not just the information. - Trent Baker
I love mixing my passion for writing with the challenge of being vulnerable. I learn from myself with every post. And I hope sharing my experiences and interests provides some learning to others at the same time!

Have you learned anything in particular here at PracticeBalance? Is there anything you'd like to read or learn more about? I'd love to hear from you!

Comments

  1. You are a very good writer. I hope your daughter learns from example and shares your passion. Writing is a very important life skill. It helps you to understand your feelings, analyze difficult situations, write papers and present lectures. Keep writing, we enjoy reading

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you very much, and I very much agree with your sentiment!

      Delete
  2. Thank you for your post, I often thing about this when sharing things publicly, but being vulnerable and relatable what connects us all as humans... so happy for you to continue writing. Readying about your journey to motherhood has truly helped me...

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you, that's what I hope for! Good luck-

      Delete

Post a Comment

Popular posts from this blog

Bittersweet: 21 Day Sugar Detox Results

From now on this is the only kind of cupcake I really want (there's a "cherry" on top of that hat)!
As a result of what I felt was an out of control craving for sugar and sweet foods, I decided to embark on a 21 Day Sugar Detox (read the whole post here). And I survived without my chocolate and candy! Amazing. Here are my observations:

- The first 2-3 days were the hardest. I was used to having sweet flavors all day, and the abrupt change (starting with my morning coffee) was like a slap in the face. At first, I craved a sweet taste constantly. But that feeling subsided, and my tastes did start to change. A green apple began to taste quite sweet, for example. I wouldn't say that I now love coffee without my vanilla stevia drops, but it isn't bad. Now that I've done it, I can vouch for what others have said: curbing your intake of sweet foods definitely decreases your cravings for them. After a while, I just didn't even think about sweets, and if I saw the…

Shoe-drop thinking: How to let go of the past?

(Yes, there is something growing in there!)
I'm pregnant, again... I'm almost 10 weeks along and definitely feeling symptoms of first trimester pregnancy this time.

No big announcements, clever texts or Facebook posts, no balloons or flowers or drama. Just quiet and cautious happiness... somewhat. You see, it's actually been difficult to enjoy the good news because I'm suffering from self-proclaimed "shoe-drop thinking"; things are going well, so when will the other shoe drop? When will that bad thing happen, you know, because something bad always happens?

I've felt exhausted on a new level, and the nausea started on cue right at 6 weeks. The occasional tugging in my lower abdomen signals the growing pains of my uterus (even though there's not much visible outward growth yet). I've had three ultrasounds that show perfectly-timed fetal growth and a strong heartbeat.

But when I have a day where I feel more energetic, I think maybe it's all over.…