I more often than not come across as a surprise to most people. They seem to think that, because I am very open with myself and to others, they know everything they need to know about me. The fact is, they often dismiss what they think they know, anyway.
Though I am not often taken seriously, people seem to think that they can predict me. “Oh she’s talking about Scotland again”; “Oh she’s going off about Harry Potter again”; “Oh she’s complaining about some other shit or other again.”
But here’s the thing. None of them seem to know that, though I may do these accused things more often that I care to admit, I am also doing other things. Unpredictable things. Off-to-the-side things that will help me in my climb to glory. Like how I ghost write for random individuals on the internet in between crafting my own novels and get paid for it. Oh — did I mention I have a 5 star rating there? Bet none of them know that. Like how I am in contact with a New York Literary agent and how every time I send one of her manuscripts back, all she has is high praise for me. I doubt any of them would ever guess that. Like how I am applying for a big scholarship to get me back to Scotland for free and that would nearly give me a full ride to one of the oldest and most established English speaking universities in the world. Yeah, most don’t know that either.
What they don’t understand about me is though I may talk a lot, I still withhold the most important information. Because, though I do talk a lot, I am not an all-talk person. And all of you complainers? You minimalist haters? You pretentious postmodern pricks? You don’t know a thing about the real world. But I do. So here’s me saying – why don’t you stop being so predictable? Everyone knows exactly what you’re going to do with your life. I mean, it’s the same thing you’ve been doing this whole time.
But me? Well Hell — I’ll be reaching for the skies. Moving somewhere at the drop of a pin and not worrying about a thing. I am, after all, just a wee lass. What could you possibly predict about me that could be true?
Perhaps one day, they’ll see. Perhaps one day, I’ll show them. Perhaps one day, they’ll know just how unpredictable I can be.
Cowardice. It’s a word that I grew to know too well.
It was a word that others held in their hearts. I could feel it radiating off their bodies as they slowly stripped me away. When they stared at me through the glass instead of coming to speak to me. When they gave me a silence so strong I could feel it following me around for weeks. When they warned me against pursuing my passions and tried to tear down my dreams because the green monster of fear sat on their hearts.
Cowardice. It’s a word that started ringing in my head. Like a siren. Blaring in my ears and droning out the world around me. I began to hear them more clearly; to think that perhaps they had a point. When she left me alone, as if a deer in the middle of the road. I was stuck; caught. Of course I was afraid. When the the only ones I felt I could trust disappeared from my grasp, to start their own lives, I wasn’t ready. I didn’t know what to do; my options had run dry. I was afraid. When he left me at the airport with the most strangled goodbye, I felt rooted to the spot. Tears fell down his face but all I did was turn away. Of course, I was just afraid.
Cowardice. It holds you back. Keeps you behind closed doors.
But I’ve learned to grow out of it. I used to let it control me, like it controls the ones around me. When I was the one stepped on, wrung out, slapped around like a dirty rug by the ones that mattered most to me. When I was quieter; timider; more subdued. I didn’t want to bother anyone; make anyone angry; disappoint them by being angry myself. I was the good little girl who always said ‘Yes’ and ‘please’ and behaved as she should. When I was a people-pleaser and felt the need to justify myself to everyone and everything. I used to be a coward. I used to let people bend my backbone as they would. I used to let my cowardice control me. But then I grew. I became bold. I grew from a humble Hufflepuff to a soaring Ravenclaw, with roaring Gryffindor undertones, and I had never felt stronger. I loved, I lived, I lost. I wrote and wrote and wrote. And was unafraid of what I wrote. It probably helped that I ran out of the country to let myself fly. Set myself free.
But I’ve also learned that the only cowardice you have to fear is your own. The one that is self-inflicted. Other peoples’ cowardice may hurt you, but it will never hold you back. Only push you forward. But your own cowardice? Your own fear? That’s what you really want to watch out for. So don’t waste time. And don’t hold back. Soar like the eagle, roar like the lion, fight like the badger, and hiss like the snake. For cowardice cannot touch you when you are sure of who you are and what you want. And when you go grab it.
Peace. Cheers. Love. xx