It's 1am and I'm still awake.
I couldn't tell you why I'm still awake, except that I found old notebooks when I got home a half hour ago. The old notebooks from two years ago, when I was a senior in high-school. And now I'm feeling nostalgic for something that I don't remember ever believing I'd miss.
I'm looking through old "last-minute-before-the-bell-poetry" that I wrote in every class of the day. Poems that started in second period biology, and finally ended as the lunch bell rang, telling me it was time for the second half of my day. Poems that I changed and edited, read and re-read on a daily basis for nine months straight.
And everything's dated - telling me exactly where I was in the year when I wrote it. Exactly what made me write it, and at exactly what point it tapered off. A moment I remember, and a letter that marked the end of it. A letter that's missing now. And when you look at the dates - I wrote almost every day for months at a time. And I'm sure that on the days I didn't write something new, I was reading what I'd already written over and over, trying to make it fit just right, just the way the voice in my head was hearing it.
The voice in my head that still screams at me every day to write, but somehow - at some point, I stopped listening as desperately to it. I still dream of writing one day. Whenever I pick up a magazine I like, or read an article that really meant something to me, I feel it inside of myself - that overwhelming desire to write something that matters to someone one day.
It's been a long time though since I've written just for me. Poetry or short stories that really mean nothing, and that I'll work at for months at a time, just so that I can read them over a year later, and realize that they're still not finished.
Classes start in just over a week, and with them, the beginning of my sophomore year of college. And just as soon as I can get the ink on the papers dried, the start of completing my major: the one thing I've always known and believed I could do. While I've always second guessed my ability to do anything else, I've always believed in my writing. Even when I knew I could do better, even when I read an incredible story or a heart-wrenching personal essay and thought I'll never be that good, something inside of me has known that I do have that ability if I work for it heard enough. And this year, I want to listen to that feeling every day. I want to remind myself every morning, every time I read something that is better written than a story of mine, I want to know that one day, that article that makes someone smile can be written by me.
Every so often at work, a coworker of mine will tell me that they expect to see that novel one day.
And one day, they will.