The Beating Of My Silver Pen
by Jess Weaver
Although it happens one hundred and fifteen thousand times a day, I do not ever stop to think about my heart beating; it is a natural part of life. If I had to stop and remind myself to make my heart beat a thousand times a day, I would never get anything else done. It just happens; it is beyond my control. That is the way that writing seems to me. It's natural.
Two years ago for Christmas my father handed me a little green box with a red bow on it. How sweet, I thought, a present just for me from my daddy! Little did I know that a gift so tiny could have affected my life so greatly. It was a pen, but not just any pen. It was a shiny silver pen with my name engraved on it. How silly, you may think, but not to me. My father had taken interest in something that I did because he saw how much that I loved to do it. I had written a poem about Christmas and spending time with family; my daddy loved it!
Writing was never an option for me; it was just natural. I never stopped to think about it. I would just lock myself in my room and put on paper the words that were flowing in my head. Sometimes it kept me out of trouble. Many times a fight with my sister would lead me to a piece of paper as a vent for my anger. Writing how I felt kept me from saying it out loud. After reading what I had written, I realized what I was feeling wasn't always the nicest thing to say to her. Other times, writing would heal me. My best friend moved away while we were in high school. We shared everything and there were few things that she did not know about. The only comfort that I found when she left was in a book of pages filled up with all the things that I wanted to share with her when we saw each other again.
Taking the time to collect my thoughts and put them down on a sheet of paper taught me something about myself. It forced me to explore my feelings and questions in order to find answers for myself. Many times I would go back and read the tattered pages and realize that life didn't need to be taken so seriously. I still have the journal that captured all of my experiences from what feels like forever ago. Sometimes I go back and read it and the roads I traveled then seem so simple now. Through reading it, I find that I learned much in that time of my life about true friendships and heartaches and growing up.
Just as the heart beats perpetually, it is also a constant source of circulation. Every second of every single day your heart circulates the blood in your body. It is amazing; your heart pumps blood into your veins, thereby giving you life! The metaphor that I am attempting to create here is simple. Writing is the one instrument that I use to stir up the emotions in my life. The simple method that I have found to express myself gives me life. Through fumbling over my thoughts, emotions, and beliefs on paper I have created my own identity.
As much as I love to write, I would not be bold enough to call myself a writer. The only individuals that I feel worthy enough to be called writers are Emerson, Thoreau, or Shakespeare, because they achieved greatness through expressing their emotions in writing. Not Weaver, no not me! I would never feel confident enough to call myself a writer. Writing is something that I do late at night when I am all alone with just the lamp on beside my bed in my little, spiraled, green notebook, and only with the special, silver pen. What I write becomes a puzzle that I piece together in my little book.
Those words always sound so much better on paper than they do out loud. As much as I love to sit and write my greatest fear is having someone else read what I have written. It is like opening a window into my thoughts. What if the reader believes that what I have written is absurd or ridiculous? What they may pass off as simple, uncanny words to me are colorful reflections of what is in my heart. Writing is what I love to do, and although I may not ever change the world with the words inscribed on my paper, just putting them there changed me. Each and every time I put my little silver pen back in the box that it came from and I close my green book, I know that just being brave enough to explore my thoughts taught me something about myself. It made me travel to a world that I created just for me, where no else can go unless I let them. Writing makes me put the tiny pieces in my head together to form a single portrait that expresses how I feel.
While writing this paper and attempting to make the reader see that writing is such an intricate part of me, I found that it wasn't so easy. Although I made the analogy that it comes so natural and is so easy just like a heart beat, I also pointed out that writing taught me something about myself. Once again, my simple hobby has not failed me. I have learned that sometimes the most natural things in life aren't the easiest to come by, and life-learning lessons aren't taught without mistakes along the way. When I turned this paper in for my professor to read, he simply handed it back to me and told me to be honest with myself. Was writing really natural to me? If it were, would this paper have taken so long to write? Would I have woken up in the middle of the night and begun to sit and stare at my computer screen in such disarray about the topic of my essay? What once seemed to come so easily has now become a task. What I used to enjoy has recently been a struggle. Writing was a hobby to me when I wrote only for myself, and it was gratifying when only I read my masterpieces. Now I write for a classroom of people, who, like me, sometimes struggle with the daring duty to become vulnerable and share what they have written with a handful of people they may never see once they leave this place. It has become a chore for me to be honest in what I write. I do not want to share my cherished thoughts with others. I know this must sound mercenary, narrow or self-centered; but at least it is honest. This creative nonfiction class has forced me to become susceptible to the criticism of others. Whether they say it out loud or not, I know that they must form an opinion of my writing in their minds.
While the beating of your heart may be a natural occurrence, sharing your heart with someone is not. Yes, writing is natural to me, but only when I do not have to share it with someone, and only when I am the critic for my finished product. Sharing what I have written with you isn't so easy. It makes me clutch onto my thoughts and not be so brazen about letting you see them, for fear that you may not appreciate my honesty.
Bio: Jess Weaver is originally from Princeton, WV. She presently attends Bluefield College in Bluefield, VA. She has been a staff writer for the Rampage (the college paper at BC) for two years. She hopes to graduate this coming December with a degree in English and concentrations in Professional Writing and Journalism. After that she plans to look for a job in the field of Public Relations or Advertising.
Other Nonfiction Articles:
[ Because I Am A Woman ] [ Sleep Creating ]
[ The Four Schools Of Womanhood ] [ Hunting The Source ]