I wrote an apology letter to Poetry on my Instagram, because she (she’s a she in my mind lol) and I, well, there’s just been a lack in our relationship. I feel like I’ve been afraid to be near her because I’m afraid I don’t have what it takes to be with her.
Maybe some have felt like this in a person-to-person relationship at some point ; maybe you’ve felt like you don’t deserve to be that person’s friend or significant other or spouse, due to mistakes you’ve made in the past or presently or because of who you are or what you look like. Maybe you feel like you’re not good enough, or you don’t measure up to a standard you think you must have or surpass to be with that person.
And that’s how I have been feeling with Poetry recently. I’ve been struggling to put words together, and when I do make the attempt, I feel like I’m trying too hard, and it can be seen in what I write. I’ve felt like maybe I don’t deserve Poetry after all; maybe it longs for me to let it go so it can create genius elsewhere.
So, instead of continuing to try to push words onto paper, I felt too afraid to keep pursuing after Poetry (not completely, just when it came to writing anything new). I didn’t want to force anything creative because I was afraid it wouldn’t sound genuine or even sound good, so I kept my distance.
But what if I’d done that in a human relationship? What if, instead of communicating my feelings, or trying to make things work, I just kept my distance? Could I really say that I loved that person? How could we grow and learn like that? So, how could I grow and learn with Poetry if I didn’t continue to try and pursue it and learn with it?
I feel like I had to go through this season for a couple of reasons…
I think there’s something to be said about attempting, even if there is no major inspiration. Even if I don’t feel inspired enough to write a poem, I can still go back to my old journals and re-read poetry I’d written before, maybe allow it to spark something inside me. Or I can continue to compile the poems I’ve written into the book I’m still writing (and plan on finishing this year). Continuing to work at my craft doesn’t require me to continuously write; I can seek out other outlets that still relate to it, and come back to the actual writing when the time comes.
Honestly, I’m still working on that part: being consistent with what I’ve got, even if it’s not what I think I need to be working on right then. And I’m working on being better at laying an actual foundation for things, and not just hopping from one thing to the next, which is way too easy for me to do. I just jump at opportunities when they arise instead of thinking about how those opportunities can be better mapped out onto my original plan.
Whoever came up with the phrase, “Stay ready so you don’t have to get ready when the time comes” is a genius. Because that’s exactly what I’m learning to do right now. How can I be ready for bigger opportunities when I’m not even ready with the little I’ve got?
The Reason Why
Now I know I had to go through this awkward phase with Poetry for a reason. Honestly, I’ve been too busy looking at what other people have been accomplishing, and it’s caused me to feel sort of down about myself. I started feeling like maybe I wasn’t good enough to experience those things, or maybe all the work I was putting in was just emptying itself out into nothing.
And because I was focusing on all of that, I wasn’t remember the whole reason WHY I got into poetry in the first place. I was forgetting the highs I got when people simply connected with something I wrote, when they related so much they appreciated feeling like they’d been seen, like they weren’t crazy for feeling the way they felt.
The purpose of my poetry isn’t so I could achieve a bunch of things, or gain a lot of money or recognition, although that would be a blessing; the root of it is to make people feel loved and seen. It’s to point to a Hope and Light that is far greater than even the words I write or speak. And losing sight of that caused me to lose the true Power in which my words come from.
So, even though the distance has been emotionally exhausting and mentally draining at times, I’m grateful that God allows things like this to happen to lead me back to where my focus needs to be, in my life in general, or in my poetry specifically.