The Mystery of Language

An exercise from “One Year of Writing and Healing”:

I remember enjoying writing. I believe it came easy to me. I think it was because it was very structured with the use of the wide ruled writing paper. I remember writing the letters out very slowly and methodically. It was more like drawing than writing. I loved “drawing” shapes, then making the shapes connect. Now the new shapes made sounds and words! It was very exciting to be able to communicate in a new way. To be able to convey what was in my head to others.

Even though I could write, I remember being upset that my writing was so sloppy. To this day it still is.

When it came to reading, phonetic books were fun. “The cat is on the mat” is still burrowed in my brain.

I remember enjoying reading at my level, and wanting to check-out books from the “older kids” section. The school librarian would never let me, telling me they were “too hard”. Nonetheless I loved the library, and would eye the older kids books. I anticipated being able to one day check them out.

I do recall that when I about 6, I thoroughly enjoying the story of “The Old Woman Who Swallowed A Fly”. I think it was the combination of rhyming, melody, and sheer bizarre content that delighted me. I remember sitting “Indian style” (it was the 70’s and political correctness didn’t exist in my little world then) on the floor singing along to the story.

I loved that story so much I made my own version of that book. I stapled pages together and copied the story word for word, complete with pictures. I remember it felt like a huge undertaking. I kept making mistakes and had to erase a lot. I wondered if I would ever finish. When I did finish, I remember showing a few people my book and really liking that I had my own copy of that story that I liked so much.

Doing this exercise has really helped tame the worry I feel inside. There’s something about reconnecting with fulfilling early memories. I feel like I’ve tapped into an authentic part of me that has been forgotten by years of self-imposed “have to”.

It’s rejuvenating to tap back into a time where I felt a joy so pure, that difficulty was not a barrier to fulfilling a vision.


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