As I sit to write my lastest post, I am just rounding out my spring break week. I had big plans for this spring break. Read book for book club – check. Take Grandpa out to lunch – check. Clean out the junk room – uncheck (who wants to spend spring break doing that anyway?). Speak to the 2nd graders at St. Wenceslaus about writing – great big, successful check!
My mom is a teacher, just as I am. She’s a wonderful teacher – 2nd grade at St. Wenceslaus. Fun fact: she teaches 2nd grade in the same classroom where I attended 2nd grade (with a different teacher, of course). My mom and her colleagues split up who teaches some of the subjects – social studies, science, and creative writing. Mom teaches creative writing. At the beginning of the school year, she told her students that her daughter (namely, moi) is a writer and is hoping to publish a book in the near future. She decided that I would be the perfect person to come in and talk to the kids about writing.
Now, just as anyone who loves and respects their mother would, I agreed. I agreed as in “sure, some day I’ll come in and talk about writing” kind of agreement. But wouldn’t you know, my spring break fell a week after theirs and I happened to be free. My mom booked the community room at St. Wenceslaus for an hour and I was charged with keeping 90 2nd graders entertained and learning about writing for AN HOUR! More than that, these students have had authors come and speak to them before. Real, live authors. As in, ones who have been published. Authors who’ve seen more than a series of rejection letters. So needless to say, I felt a bit nervous and inadequate.
Luckily for me, I’m a teacher. I’ll go ahead and toot my own horn and say I have a way with children. The presentation went beautifully. The students were engaged, they asked interesting questions, and I think they may have just left inspired to keep writing.
But there’s a secret.
I think I may have gotten more out of it then they did.
In creating my presentation, I was reminded of how much I’ve loved writing for virtually as long as I can remember. From 2nd grade on, I wanted to be an author. I even found some (and by some, I mean a stack at least a foot tall) of my old writing. Writing from grade school, middle school, high school. Writing that won me entrance to 2 conferences for young authors. Writing that was published in local publications. Writing that made me remember who I had a crush on in 8th grade. Writing that reminded me how desperately I wanted to be in the “popular” group in middle school. Writing that reaffirmed my faith. Writing that demonstrated the rawness of emotion after a terrible loss. Writing that made me chuckle as I reread it. Writing that made me think, “Yes, this is what I am meant to be.” Writing that was me.
I am a writer, and I thank the students at St. Wenceslaus for helping reaffirm my belief in myself.
I am a writer.