Ek’abo Ebi! (Welcome Family!)
My earliest memory of writing was in second grade. My teacher asked the class to write a short story about anything that came to mind during the weekend. My adventurous story was about a girl who saw a car hanging off the side of the George Washington Bridge while she was on her way home from New Jersey.
(Go figure LOL!) Until now, I have no clue what I saw or heard that gave me such an idea, but sure enough I received a lifted eyebrow from my teacher and an amused but bewildered, “Really Sharon, where do you come up with such outrageous stories!” LOL! Needless to say, my next parent-teacher conference was quite interesting.
As long as I can remember, I’ve had a very vivid imagination. A large part of what fed that imagination was books. Not just books, but new books. I always looked forward to receiving a new pamphlet from Weekly Reader (For those of you who are not familiar, the Weekly Reader is today’s Scholastic).
I was drawn to the new titles; the new covers; the new book smell. I loved fantasy based books and still do. I would pull out those colorful pages at the end of the day and immediately show it to my parents. “Mommy, Daddy, can I have a new book or two?” When I was little it was Green Eggs and Ham, when I was in elementary school it was Nancy Drew. In junior high school, I learned a little about sex and scoliosis when I read Judy Blume’s Wifey (secretly LOL) and Deenie.
In high school, my interest in Judy Blume continued when I read the books Forever and Tiger Eyes. I read and discovered authors such as: Beverly Clearly, James Baldwin, and a bit of George Orwell. I wrote for the school newspaper, and wrote my way into college with the perfect (thanks to my favorite English teacher) entrance essay. I went to college with thoughts of becoming a reporter, getting involved in some area of the media. I pursued a Liberal Arts degree and after I received it, the world began to change.
I started to see the big picture. There was no money in becoming a reporter in the 90’s (at least not at the beginning). And the path before me did not look inviting. Imagine me a city girl in some small rural town, stumbling my way to recognition. I did not want it enough; I did not want that career enough to walk down that road. So I changed direction and pursued a degree in the legal field.
When I look back at it now, I don’t regret it. Everything that we do in life is meant in some way. And even though, we sometimes wonder about the “what ifs”, we get where we are, when we are meant to.
So in 2003, eight years and two children later, I found myself back on the correct path. Deciding that I wanted to write something for my children; realizing that I had a new story to tell. Something just as vivid and bright as the creative, amusing, outrageous, elemental stories that that second grader wrote those many years ago.
I no longer worry about the “what ifs”. I’m thinking about “what can be”. Do I have some pessimism? Of course, who wouldn’t? But I can’t let that be a deterrent. All those characters, those thoughts, those ideas that have been looking for a way out, have found their place on paper.
Not all of us know from such a young age that this is what they were meant to do. Life intervenes and alters our course. But we always find our way back. Did life change your course? Did it take a while before you found your way back to your true path? Becoming a writer? Have you already embraced your dream? Or are you working towards it? If so, I invite you to share your story me. How vivid is your imagination? Did you write as a child? I look forward to hearing about your journey!
Mari e laipe!
See you soon!
Thanks for visiting ‘Amachi is Hope.’ If you were inspired or felt a connection with today’s blog (or any of my previous entries) please leave a comment. J