Welcome to 2015! I’ve been sheltered away in my dreaming cave for the past few days, thinking about what I want my 2015 to hold. And, naturally, I want the coming year to hold many things, some of them more probable than others, but most of all I want 2015 to hold time and space for writing. And, of course, to get to share that writing with you. 🙂
Here’s my wish for you (and me!) in the new year
In honor of this wish, I’ve written a poem. Happy (somewhat belated) New Year, everyone!
A poem for beginnings
I begin with a breath, with a cough, with a scream.
I begin cold and naked and shivering, thrust into a future I could never have dreamed of.
As a child I began to babble, to crawl, to stand.
As a child I first lay and then sat and then danced on my tippy toes, held securely in my father’s hands.
As a child I dared to stand alone and I crowed with achievement.
As a child I stood and then fell and I wailed to have failed so unexpectedly.
I grew taller and I hit the ground harder whenever I first leapt and then fell.
I collected small failures in the shape of bumps and bruises from where my growing edges had knocked against door jambs and chair backs and counter corners.
I collected larger failures in the shape of cracked teeth and sprained ankles and near-misses with cars.
As a child I was small and fragile and I didn’t always understand that life could be dangerous.
But I knew that falling was a necessary part of standing and that a few bumps and bruises were survivable.
As a child I knew how to cry and wipe my tears and stand back up again.
As a teenager I learned a different kind of lesson.
A lesson about not-crying and not-falling and not-trying.
A lesson about grades and how sometimes just trying isn’t good enough.
A lesson about the importance of being right instead of being brave.
I learned that doing it differently is dangerous and that to be myself was both risky and dangerous.
I learned that different was often lonely and my heart ached with the weight of that realization, of that emptiness.
I learned that most of the time people look without seeing and that when people looked at me they saw not-me but rather my list of achievements, of accomplishments, of activities.
I learned to let these things define me, until I became not-me, until I became them-instead.
And so I buried that little girl with her daring and her dreams and her failing and I learned to do what other people expected.
I learned to be bland. I learned to be boring.
I learned to be invisible.
And so I’ve come to here, to this moment, with a blank page before me and a brand new beginning and the only thing I know is that I’ve never been more scared of falling.
I’ve never been more scared of failing.
I’ve never been more scared of becoming, once more, that little girl.
The one who dared to dream of the impossible
The one who wasn’t afraid to fall down, cry, and still keep on trying.
What are your dreams for 2015? Let me know in the comments below!