As for me, I'm going back to school as well. (And you can too! Check out the details here.) My first assignment is to write about why I write. And since I am pressed for time, I'm going to spill my thoughts here with no editing. Which is usually the best way to write anyway.
On Friday night, Ryan and I went to see Julie & Julia. Ryan was skeptical before the movie started because the average age of the other patrons in the theatre was roughly 113-years-old. I began crying about 2/3 of the way through the movie and didn't stop until about three hours after it ended. And to be perfectly honest, it wasn't my favorite movie ever-ever-ever, but not because it wasn't a great movie--it was a great movie. The problem was that instead of becoming lost in the movie (like my other favorites), I became involved in the movie--a third story line in my own head. There was just too much that related to my own thoughts and dreams that I almost stood up in the theatre to perform my own monologue:
You see, everybody, I would say, I too have dreams of doing something special with my life! And like Julia Child and Julie Powell, I too am a thirty-something middle-class white woman who is inspired and empowered by other people who follow their dreams! I'm watching these stories here and I GET this. I mean, I really, really GET this! Right down to my toenails, I GET this--the angst, the hope, the impossible dreams! I, too, have spent countless hours blogging (and eating), wondering all the while if it is a complete waste of time despite a nagging hope that it might be the most important and meaningful endeavor of my life. And someday you might return to this very theatre (unless, of course, you pass away first, my elderly friends) and watch the true story about how I was inspired by Julie who was inspired by Julia and how I was also inspired by Julia who was inspired by her love of French food and how I turned all that inspiration into a bestselling novel about a worried little boy who blogs about butter and cream sauces! It's the circle of life, geezers, and I am a WRITER! And, okay, I'm kind of second-guessing some of those details about the novel, but the point is that I want to announce right here and right now that I am a WRITER! An all-caps WRITER! Not just a copywriter, but a writer-writer! And it doesn't matter that I don't have a publisher, an agent or even a good handle on using semi-colons! I'm a writer, dammit, a WRIIIIIITERRRRRRRRR!
But I didn't stand up and give my monologue, interrupting the wonderful movie. And I certainly didn't announce to a theatre full of senior citizens that I'm a writer. (I mean, it's one thing to interrupt a movie, but just imagine the nerve of calling myself a writer!)
Instead, I just sat and cried and cried and cried. We walked out of the theatre and I cried while Ryan used the bathroom. We walked to our car, buckled up and drove in the rain while I cried. Ryan asked me to express my thoughts--such is the charge of psychologist husbands--but I couldn't find the words. They don't come out of my mouth very well; they never have. Words come out of my fingertips. So I cried all the way home and Ryan squeezed my hand until it could find the words.
And days later, I have an assignment. Why do I write? Because Julia loved butter. Because Ricky loved Lucy. Because Forrest loved to run. Because the sky is blue. Because my feet are small. Because life is beautiful. Because I used to have a bathroom made of dry-erase boards. Because I was bullied. Because I fell in love. Because I became a mother. Because I'm self-absorbed. Because my hair is curly. Because my eyes are brown. Because I used to hate dogs. Because I love to laugh. Because I went fishing once in the rain. Because I want to be thinner. Because I love everyone. Because I hate everyone. Because I sleep with one foot sticking out of the covers. Because injustice makes me worry. Because I dance in the kitchen. Because, because, because.
That's why. That's exactly why.