Today’s guest post is by aspiring writer and all-around lovely lady, Emma. I feel her submission proves one thing to be true: when the going gets tough, the tough get going.
In line with the positive themes of her blog, Ruth has stipulated that guest blogs must be uplifting and similarly positive…….
I’ll be honest, this threw me a little. The last few years of my life have been the darkest I’ve ever experienced. Since I had my son in 2013 I’ve suffered with PND, miscarriage and redundancy, and amongst all of this we also picked up our lives in London and moved back home to Lincolnshire.
Whilst this has been fantastic in terms of family support, it’s also served to remind me of my old insecurities. The great thing about moving elsewhere is the security of anonymity. You can be whoever you want to be, leaving the past firmly planted behind you.
When you’re back in your hometown everyone believes they know you and it’s wearing on your own sense of identity, especially when you’re feeling so unbelievably lost already. Everything I knew about myself was slowly eroded away over those few years, shattering my sense of self and leaving me to collect the debris to try piece myself together again.
But, I became determined that I would put together a version of myself that was honest and true. A version that would be who I really was rather than a people pleasing sculpture, reminiscent of me, but vitally missing those parts that really made me myself.
This is where it becomes more positive – I promise!
After the birth of my daughter last year, I was given the gift of time. Time to enjoy my children, time to consider who I was and what I wanted. I took every negative feeling I had felt and had a long period of reflection. I considered where I had been, what I had learned and most importantly what did I want to do from here on out.
As I saw it, I had two options. I’d worked in HR for a few years and so I could build on this experience and study for my CIPD. This was my sensible, safe option. The other; I could become a writer. This option made my heart sing and my soul shake with excitement. For the first time; however crazy, however implausible – I felt as if I was on the right path.
After I made the decision everything has literally fallen at my feet, even the randomly selected day I’d booked my daughter in at the local nursery when she was born (when at the time I was jobless and had no clue what I was doing in life!) just happens to be the teaching day at the university where I have been accepted to study an MA in Creative Writing.
My Mum has always had a saying which she loves to bandy around during moments of crisis; “Everything happens for a reason”. Much of the time she has been right (annoyingly!) and I’ve managed to find the good in a bad situation. But, the experiences I’d had most recently, those experiences which had been so utterly life changing; I couldn’t see any reason in.
My life had always been pretty idyllic. I’ve been incredibly blessed. I mean, I’ve had crappy days, weeks and even months, but on the whole I had led an uneventful existence. Since childhood I’ve loved to write stories. I had a wild, vivid imagination and a thirst for knowledge, but whilst I grew older, my stories still seemed childish. They lacked something vital. I had no range of experience, no understanding of darkness to create any real, relatable conflict for my characters.
Then the darkness I’d been seeking found me and my writing stopped completely. No stories. No characters. Just emptiness. The swirl of black fog within me stole my release leaving me stranded and battling to live.
But I’m fighting back.
I’m staking a claim in the desperate pain I’ve survived, I’m owning it and channelling it into my dream. I know now that I’m meant to be a writer, just as I know that I’m meant to write about my experiences. If I can help one other woman pull herself from the abyss like I did – that will be my reward.
Everything really does happen for a reason. Sometimes you just need to search inside yourself and take a few risks to find it.
You can find Emma in the following places.
I got to be honest – these guest posts are so good, I’m wondering if I should abandon ship and let you guys take over!
Fancy reading another? Here’s last week’s guest post from Annie!