At some point in my life I developed a love for writing stories. I remember being in grade six, slaving away over a story in a creative writing task. If I am not mistaken, Mrs Munsaka was my teacher at the time. I loved telling stories then and I still do — to those who would listen — to those close to me. For whatever reason, when people, especially those closest to me do not listen, it hurts more than I would care to admit; worse though is the feeling when they laugh at an idea … and no, my family are extremely supportive, but for whatever reason, I would rather put my stories out to be judged by those with little or no connection to me.
I have been thinking a lot about what I write and why I put off writing deadlines or the dream to publish. Part of it is the fear that people will find my writing mundane and uninspiring. Part of it is that I am afraid that I might actually be good at it, but the scariest thing for me is that my family might hide in shame at the things I put out. That my dad might not like a piece of writing despite not saying so … that my mum might think that whatever I have written falls into the category of thoughts that God did not intend for everyone to see … Maybe my brother might see it and shake his head, that my sisters might find it heavy, or full of grammatical errors. That people might see it and think my husband married a diva, that my daughter would want to hide her face and not want to be associated with me.
I don’t know if I will ever achieve the goals I have when it comes to writing, but it has become exceedingly clear that I am afraid to drag those closest to me through another failure, another walk of shame … and here I am, sitting in my leaving room, my mum’s voice telling me, “You have gifts that you don’t use …” knowing she is right, I wonder “really what is the worst thing that could happen?” Does anyone else ever worry about such things? How do you fight such hidden, seemingly petty fears?
I recently found out that fear is sometimes … if not most times … born out of a lack of faith. A lack of faith in myself that causes me to question if really God has given me a gift. But more importantly, a lack of faith in God and who the word says He is. A lack of faith in the giver of talents, the one who says even if I fail at this, He will work it for my good.