How writing saved my life 20 years ago.


“Feature image courtesy of Zaytsev Artem via Creative Commons”

When I was in middle school I was bullied severely. Every day it was something. I would get to school, the bully, would find me no matter where I hid he would find me.

I hated going to school, and nearly dropped out because of the bullying. There are things that happened to me that I carry with me. A lot of it is damage that happened to me because of fear.

Fear of what would happen to me if I told, fear of nothing happening. I wasn’t the only one this happened to. I nearly dropped out of school because of a bully. I thought about killing myself often, more often than anyone knows.

I thought of killing the bully, I even took a knife to school once. This was before Columbine and things weren’t watched as much.

The day that changed my life was in my English class. We had a set of words that we had to create a story with, normal stuff. Well I wrote a story, but I forgot to use the words.

When I turned the paper in I didn’t realize that I’d done it. I only knew I enjoyed writing the story. It was such a freeing moment in my life. I had never felt anything like it, I’d never had anyone tell me that I could feel that way.

Joining the ranks.

When I returned to class the next day, and received my paper. It had an A on it, something I didn’t receive often, but at the top of the page, next to the grade was a small note in red, Brian, this is really good, but where are the words.

That happened the end of eight grade. I left the school and moved in with my mom and step-dad for a while that summer. I think I was contemplating what to do, but I took a notebook and pen with me. I wrote down poems, stories and things that I observed.

By the end of the summer I moved back into my dads, and back at the school with the bully. I tried to make it in that school, but the bully was there and I couldn’t go to school. I got to the point where I didn’t care if I woke up or not, and many times I wish I didn’t.

My dad had no idea how bad it was, don’t think he still does. After one horrible day, I had a big fight with my dad and moved to my mom and step-dads. I took the notebook with me.

My writing has always been my keeper of secrets, lies, stories, my hearts wishes and the things I wanted most out of life.

I truly believe that notebook, and writing save my life. I am 100% sure I would have killed myself if I didn’t learn to write.

What caused you to become a writer? Answer in the comments.

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7 Responses to How writing saved my life 20 years ago.

  1. Nona says:

    Brian,
    Your story here rings so similar to my own. My family were outcasts because we marched to the beat of a different drum. We were independent-minded and were constantly a target because of that fact. My mom never tired of impressing us the importance of being our own person and not allowing the masses to determine our identity. Add onto that my stubbornness and you have an eagerness to dismiss… at least, I liked to believe I was able to dismiss them.

    As is often the case, strife at home became a direct result. And when I began writing as a tween, I tortured my characters the same as I was tortured, but I had the power to wrong those rights and bring the evil to justice, or soothe and heal the broken hearts. Writing has kept me sane, and given me an outlet to work out my own pains. I don’t want to think about where I would be without my characters, good and bad.

    • I stopped writing for eight years. When I started it was because I was in a dark place emotionally, a lot like middle school. I keep a journal with me all the time now. Darker times have always made me write. It keeps the things that scared me as a kid away. Between dealing with parents, bullies and other stuff, being a kid is tougher than we like to remember. Thanks for sharing Nona.

  2. If you haven’t read my posts on my Adult ADHD, then I will just repeat that I write because it keeps me focused. I like to just start typing and see what comes out. It is a great healer of the mind and soul when you think about it. Currently I am working on developing a character that I can start writing into a series of books. I love reading what others write and see what emotions it will carry out of me and I use that as more motivation. Thanks for being an inspiration cuz!

  3. Those grades are horrible for many. It’s hard to tell a kid, “they are idiots and you will be the one to succeed.” What kid will believe that.
    English teachers know their students better than most teachers do because of the writing. Perhaps schools would be wiser to have small writing / English classes for an hour a day than feel good self esteem programs.
    Glad you hung in there. You are a writer.

    • Some of my favorite times were in that English class, as well as a writing class I took in high school. I think having kids write and discover what kinds of stories they come up with is a great idea. Self esteem programs don’t work. Thanks Philosopher that last sentence means a lot to me.

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