I’m looking for my voice. Have you seen it?
I want to write; to contribute, to tell the world something worthwhile.
But sometimes I get lazy. I see others living out their passions and I think, “Hey, I could do that!” and then I recede back into the deep folds of my queen size bed, disappearing into the darkness with murmurs of, “Another day, perhaps.” It’s calm and warm inside the bed, comfortable and soft, and so, so much easier this way.
What if I suck?
What if no one wants to hear my voice? What if I never create a shred of anything remotely resembling good writing? What if people laugh and criticize and tear down what I so tenuously construct? What if I try, like really try, and I produce a trite, hackneyed load of bullshit?
It’s so easy to lose momentum and get discouraged; to stop writing again, and silence myself. How long will it be this time? A few months? A decade? How long until the voice inside me gets so loud and overwhelming that I finally reemerge from my bed to give it another couple of weeks; to pretend I’m giving my best until I get tired and things get hard, until my schedule gets tight and deadlines loom near, until I throw my hands up and say, “This isn’t actually something that matters to me at all,” and then I give up because I’ve lied to myself once again to prevent taking an actual, real risk and failing spectacularly a million times over?
What if I try and fail? Is that worse than not trying at all?
The space between thinking about something and actually doing it might be as immense as the Grand Canyon. I want to find the bravery to close my eyes, take one enormously deep breath and walk off the cliff into the crisp, sterile air. I want to gingerly place my toe on the tightrope connecting the two vast, solitary canyon edges, to hear the hum of the wind echoing against my eardrums; to feel the wisps of hair whipping against my cheeks and the rope vibrating underneath my feet, and to keep walking. I want to fall down the canyon over and over and over again, breaking every bone in my stubborn body. Then I want to claw and scratch my way back up the deep, jagged rocks and try again.
If you find my voice, let it know that it can find me at the edge of the Grand Canyon, trying to figure out if I will survive the fall.
Photo (Flickr CC) by Grand Canyon National Park