I'm sure we all did it. When I was a child I used to look at myself in the mirror and wonder who I would be when I go up. As a child and then later as a teenager, I was obsessed with animals. Over the years there were many animals around my house including the usual cats and dogs as well as sea horses, turtles, quail, rabbits, and even a wild pigeon I captured all by myself and taught to ride on my shoulder as I biked to the grocery store. I looked into that mirror and just KNEW I would be a veterinarian one day.
As an adult, looking into that mirror became a bit more difficult. Things weren't as clear cut to me any more, and I questioned the path on which I found myself. I had been writing since I was about 8 years old and I had always dreamed of writing books for children one day. By the time I was in my late 20's, I was still writing but allowed other people or other things to get between me and the goal I had in my mind. I began to allow what others thought of my writing to influence how I felt about myself. Doubts crept in. Fear of being good enough lurked in the corners of my mind.
One day I looked into the mirror and could no longer see the writer in me. The passion for the written word had been silenced by the hurtful words of others. I lay down my pen and walked away from that dream for over 20 years. I thought it would be simple to choose another life for myself and pursued many other interests over those years in the hopes I could fill in the missing pieces of my spirit with something else. Anything else.
Surprisingly enough, I discovered one thing to bring me back from the edge of nothingness. Martial arts. The training I have received in TaeKwonDo over the past ten years, along with the bond I have forged with my best friend and chief instructor, has helped to give me back my life. After more than 20 years, I have a passion for living once again and this allows me to take another peek at the mirror. This time with confidence and curiosity.
What if I have the ability to change what I see before me? What if I really AM capable of returning to my first love? I make a promise to myself then and there to NEVER silence the writer in me again. To seek out the positive energy in others, like myself, who feel compelled to write. To do that which enriches my spirit and challenges me to become a stronger version of that girl who first looked at her reflection all those years ago.
Today I look in my mirror and dare to dream again about being a writer. Of one day seeing my words in the hands of some other young lady and hopefully those words will encourage her to dare to dream as well. I just need to make sure that I don't overdo it...