It’s been a while since I’ve written anything longer than a paragraph. I thought it would feel unfamiliar, but it feels like coming home. My spontaneous hiatus from writing, reading and generally functioning is coming to a close, and I am feeling a hesitant kind of relief.
Prior to my internship at Busybird, I had been playing host to a frustrating kind of brain fog. Not the where-are-my-keys? kind of brain fog, but the can’t-finish-a-sentence kind. I was unable to recall what words should come after ‘hello’, and what the name of this thing is – the sharp one that cuts the vegetables. And what do you call this long green vegetable, the one with the nubbin on the end? And these ones that are round-ish and beige. I was a slow customer at the self-serve checkout.
When Blaise asked me to write this blog post, I was worried that I wasn’t up to task. I wasn’t certain that my newly recovered concentration and vocabulary for groceries would be sufficient. But when I’d been asked to proof a novel a few weeks ago, I was uncertain then too. I became immediately enthralled by the task of picking through it word by word. It was the first book I had managed to read in a year and a half, and I was delighted. So I hoped that this might go better than expected too.
Many things have gone better than expected since I started my internship at Busybird. After my overly-friendly brain fog intercepted my Honours year, I had found myself without a writing community. I discovered one again at the Busybird Open Mic Night I attended on my first day. I haven’t been part of such a supportive crowd … perhaps ever. I felt like anything was possible. I’ve even started eyeing off an unfinished project that I thought would never be written. I thought I would never be capable.
But I also thought I wasn’t capable of writing a blog post, and here we are.
I am more hopeful about my writing than I have been in years. I’m shaking the dust off my ideas, the ones I thought were spent and overly ambitious. I’m reassessing them, and I’m getting excited again. I guess that’s what happens when you spend time around people who have made it their life’s work to nurture books into the world: to hatch them gently, and then shove them out of the nest when they are ready. Because we don’t always believe we can fly until we’re doing it.
I penned the first draft of this article by hand, and I have awoken muscles that I had forgotten that I had. I have a happy little dent where my pen has been resting.
Welcome home, finger-dent. It’s been a while.