My Obligation

All I ever wanted was to be a writer, but lately words don’t come easy. I knew I wanted to write the second I learnt how to read. Books were my escape, even at a young age – I loved the idea of creating a magical space and time where people like me could just be. A place to explore, a place to indulge, a place to feel life to the fullest.

When I grew up there were a lot of don’ts for me. My parents wanted to keep me safe, everything was seen as a potential place of harm. My older brother, my designated protector, reveled in the idea that he could decide for me what I could and could not do. And while they meant well, I was put in a box. They wanted me to know no harm, they wanted to know that I was safe and to be honest, I never felt like I was missing out. It kind of suited my personality. Another person would have maybe rebelled against this in every way possible, but me? Like a hamster I kept digging and gnawing on whatever I could grasp and slowly made my escape through books, through writing, through dreaming up a whole different world, where I could go and explore without boundaries.

Eventually, I took a leap and slowly tore down all that was so carefully set up for me. I was never scared of the world. I read so many books, learnt about so many things, discovered a whole new world while growing up – I knew that if I ever was frightened, there was something to turn to that would take away the fear… Writing.

I used to write an awful lot when I was younger – stories and poems and songs and plays, a little bit of everything. I created worlds on worlds on worlds and that escape made me feel whole, made me feel safe, made me feel like I had control over a tiny bit of my life where nobody could tell me what I could and could not do. But now, I’m arguably a grown-up in charge of my own life and writing doesn’t come easy.

And you know why that is? Because I am so absolutely in love with my life, where I am at right now, what I get to do every single day. I am sometimes fearful that if I were to write down this world that maybe I would miss a moment of it all and that would be a shame, because it is – despite everything that is going on in the world – a beautiful place to be. So, there are days and weeks and months even where I don’t write a single word, just to make sure that I am living my life to the fullest.

But it is in those moments that I am reminded that I have an obligation too and that is to share my story. When I was younger, hearing from other people was the way I made sense of the world. I would be a very different person if it weren’t for the books that I read… So, there it is – my obligation to my younger self and anyone that may need to hear the words, and that may need an extra hand, and that may need that extra bit of support.

In a nutshell, this is me saying I am back. After a hiatus of some time, focusing on my PhD and making sure it gets done (still doing that by the way…), it is time to return to the one thing that I love the most in the world… writing.

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