"It takes courage to write what comes to me: you never know what could come up and scare you."
Chicwish sweater // DailyLook pants // Forever 21 backpack // Mango boots // Oculuste sunglasses
Writing has been a therapeutic refuge since high school. I would journal things from the teen angst I was about what happened to me that day to the twenty-something adulting-noob that word vomits things I didn't know how to properly express in diction. Whatever it was, pen to paper, A to Z, I felt relieved to have something, somewhere, to chronicle the inner workings of my clockwork mind. It was the perfect kind of intimate outlet to spill my anxiety and stress, after a full day of struggling to hold it all together for the sake of making it through the day. It was like carrying 100,000 Lego pieces in your hands, trying not to drop a single piece all day, then finally coming home to dump it all on the ground. Writing gave me a release and a way out. I may not know what exactly I was running from, but those few minutes to myself were all I needed to recenter myself and feel at peace.
Until lately, things began to become harder to write. Initially, because I just couldn't keep up with my busy life to spare 15 minutes of writing time, but it grew into a responsibility because I was mostly afraid of addressing myself. The silent seconds were no longer a sanctuary of self-reflection but now became the dreaded fear of coming face to face with what I was struggling with inside. It became a taunting cry of deciphering what was holding me back and whether or not, I had the mental capacity to sort out my jumbled feelings. The blank paper with its exactly aligned lines waiting for letters to fill the spaces between, that once fostered a home for my lost words, became intimidating and provoking. I felt as if anything I wrote down immediately became a reflection of who I really was as a person, rather than what I already know, and I just wasn't ready to face the facts. I preferred living in a reality I constructed in my mind than having to write it all out only to stare at words that exposed a harsher truth. So, I neglected my outlet, and my mind became even more jumbled and entangled than before. I didn't have an escape route for the mental mess anymore, and it was growing more exhausting than writing at all. It built up to a scribbled abyss that only grew with each passing day I didn't relieve it. My safe haven doubled as one of my greatest fears. I became one of my biggest enemies.
For anyone who has gone through this, or understands the fear of this creative outlet, then you know that for us, it takes a whole lot of courage and energy to get us to scribble ink onto a sheet of paper. Because it isn't just a recount of events or thoughts, but it's a home we've built for our minds outside our heads. We've hammered and nailed each piece of shield to offer a safe space for our self-reflections. But sometimes, it isn't the outside world that threatens our homes. It's our own minds trespassing from within.
But I'm rebuilding my home, again, because I've realized that facing myself and my thoughts is far less daunting than drowning in frantic chaos cultivated in my mind. One word at a time.
Photography by William Coles