My Bridge

In 5th grade (public school), we had about 45 minutes of reading time where the teacher would read aloud to us from a fiction book. We also had "Creative Writing" that year. My creative writing could best be described as EPIC FAILURE. No kidding. I was told my scary story "had absolutely no plot." I failed our end of the first semester writing exam/contest. But I loved to read, and I equally loved to write. Yet, I failed on purpose. I remember sitting in my desk, writing my scary story and thinking, This isn't it. This isn't what I feel, what I want to really say. I purposely weaved half-hearted short stories because I was so afraid of writing what I really felt only to have it cut down with sharp criticism. It is easier to take criticism for something I hadn't really poured myself into then to let my heart bleed all over the paper.

(I'm the same way when it comes to "real life." For a very time I've faked 89% of who I am. There are those occasional people who see through my lame puppeteer act. But I tried very hard, and for the most part was pretty successful. For me, at least.)

My turning point with all the failed short stories and poems came to an end (or rather, a sort of slow unraveling like a sweater) when my teacher read us "Bridge To Terabithia." When we were about half way through the book, the teacher let me take her copy of the book home for the weekend. I stayed up until 2 in the morning to finish it. I laid on my bed and wept until I fell asleep. It was the very first book to make me cry. Monday morning, I returned the book to my teacher, who was sitting at her desk. A couple of boys were standing near when I handed the book over. I thanked the teacher for letting me borrow the book. "It was so good. It made me cry." I blurted. She gave me a surprised look. The two boys laughed and began to tease me. The teacher softened her look and told me it was okay. It was okay for books to make me cry. It was okay to feel emotion over words.

When I sat back down at my desk, my face still throbbing with embarrassment, I decided I was going to write. Not like before, where I had only tried to write long, complicated sentences. I was going to write what I felt. I was going to write, and move people the way the book had moved me. I don't think it's happened yet.

I still cry when I read books.

I also cry when I'm happy.

I cry a lot, really.

But, I think it's okay. Because when a book makes me feel so much emotion, I know that I'm still alive.

And when I write "incorrectly" (i.e. starting a sentence with the word "and"), I know it's okay, because I'm writing what I feel, and not what I'm "supposed to write."

And when I'm boyfriend-less for an indefinite amount of time because I'm not conforming enough, it's okay. Because, as someone once pointed out to me, It wouldn't be worth it if someone did love you, if it wasn't really you they were loving.

Jessica Wynn

Thanks for reading! If you liked this post, you're welcome to share it on social media, or email it to your mom. Make sure you tell your cats about me! :)

2 Thoughts:

Roxie said...

I understand completely. Also, you can start a sentence with the word And and it be correct- it just depends on the importance of what you want to say.
I recently found this out. That is why I sometimes (a lot of times) start my sentences with And. lol
I also cried in Bridge to Terabithia. I still cry when I read it.
I often cry when reading books because it feels real or touches me with its message (a.k.a Christian fiction, lol).
There are emotions in words. Definitely.
Love ya!

corbin. said...

this is so true, how you describe how you write. you seem like a really genuine person. and i really like your blog :)

it would be awesome if you could check out my blog too!

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