Sorting through boxes of pictures and keepsakes stacked in the closets my mom’s house, I stumbled across the “Big Book of Me,” one of those personalized answer-the-questions books parents give their kids to capture their thoughts at a moment in time. I was nine years old when I completed (mostly) the pages, and wrote that when I grew up, I’d like to be “a aurther” and learn how to “write books.” (Spelling was never a strength…) This was after first answering, then scratching out, that I wanted to be a ‘baseball player” or a “dentist,” because what I truly wanted to do was tell stories and write books. But I didn’t write books, not in my teenage years or during college, or after college. I didn’t even attempt to write a book until my early thirties, and that was abandoned quickly. The enthusiasm and confidence of my youthful self gave way to practicality, fear, and self-doubt.
I didn’t write a book until I was well into my forties. Writing is hard, sometimes futile, and can quickly deteriorate into frustration and self-doubt. But it’s worth it, and I love it.
Many things keep us from doing what our youthful, enthusiastic selves confidently dreamed we could do: we tell ourselves it’s not practical, we don’t know the method or steps, our confidence evaporates, we’re fixated on what others may think about us. But I’m certain that your particular confident dream is still inside you, no matter how many layers of doubt it’s been blanketed under. So peel back the layers and find it again, and without knowing the how or the method or the outcome, just begin.