When I was in High School I loved American and English Lit classes. In my senior year I enrolled in the local community college as an early entry student and took a writing class. People would casually comment on my writing, and I made decent grades in most subjects if I could use words. I was one of those that hoped the test would be essay…
But I did not major in english or journalism. I was a music major. I didn’t really like the music classes and the math of music never came easy for me. In fact, the desire to learn an instrument did not make the learning any easier. But I loved to sing and studied voice from an early age so it made sense that I would choose music as my major. I couldn’t find my niche in music academe though and so I got my music jollies out by joining a band.
Eventually I found my way back to college majoring in mental health. I wrote many papers on everything from co-dependence to existentialism. Professors noted my writing skills. I remember one particularly influencial person at that time in my life. She handed me a blank notebook and very simply said, “Write.” I would write in my journal, dabble in poetry, dig into term papers and ace those essay tests. Graduate school was more of the same, writing and researching.
Throughout my vocational journey people would whisper, suggest or shout that I should write. I remember saying more than once, “Write WHAT?” Years ago, a dear friend having received a letter from me, suggested I should write a book of letters (Ok, so how does one do THAT, I thought…). Writing had always been a passion of mine, somewhat primordial for me. I never gave it much thought- I just did it in the course of my day, my life, my work.
The years passed and my writing skills continued to serve me well; I would use my skills in mental health centers and as a private practitioner writing lengthy psychosocial reports and forensic evaluations. In the late 90’s I discovered a new way to deliver therapy online with email and chat and it was such a natural fit for me. Using the written word to communicate with and not just about clients was great!
And so now I find myself well into my career, loving my work. A self-reflective,”huh…” I recently said to myself. Imagine that. All these years later, I am doing what I was apparently called to do. If someone were to ask me, “What do you do for a living?” my answer would not be, “Oh, I am a writer.” But it dawned on me recently that indeed I am. Funny that. My career has been shaped around a core desire. Now most of my work involves writing- from writing this blog to writing client reports. But mostly, I write to clients through email and chat and I find the work amazingly rewarding. And when I am not writing to clients, I am writing about online therapy and the merging of mental health and technology; books, articles, blogs, tweets….
So who am I? I am woman, wife, daughter, friend, psychotherapist, singer…writer.
Today I celebrate the writer in me. Snoopy dance.
Blessings to all this Passover and Easter!