Nothing like my Journey!
During these almost four months, I have been thinking about how losing builds character. I’ve got plenty of character by now. This is what I’m thinking after my fifth consecutive loss.
The extra understanding, awesome midwives, mentors and editors could chuckle as I said that. No matter how bad I looked in the Voices Rising section – No work published anywhere, no special mentions, no extra points earned, end of assignment frustration month after month- I am stating that I wouldn’t be anywhere else today.
Ever since I was in high school, I wanted to be a writer, and/or a journalist. I am so proud to be here. I have played hard all these months. I never gave up until the last minute of time was up to be taken into account by our judges. I might not be a winner on the field, but in my heart, I am a winner, as I managed to jump over all the obstacles falling on my feet and standing still.
Everyone will agree with me. When you look at my scoreboard, you may think ‘what a horrible performance’. But I loved writing everything I wrote. I am not going to kid you. I may not have a lot of talent, but I have had a ton of heart. There wasn’t a moment that I gave up, and I’m proud to have been here, doing the job.
I have stepped out of my little dark square called computer into the blinding lights of the new media stream called citizen journalism. At moments, there were bags under my glassy eyes hanging like leather pouches on a white horse because I had been crying.
Sometimes I felt my audience would never be satisfied with me. One moment they looked as if they had just eaten a bad oyster and had to leave for the bathroom: they weren’t there!. Minutes later, when commenting on my piece, they were pale as if they have been told their car has a flat tire: they didn’t know what to say.
And my mind was like an old building. As I had never expected, it seemed smaller to me than ever, it smelled like a bunch of old textiles that have been kept closed; the writing took away the smell of stagnation. It left my brain anew, like a new breeze brings the smell of flowers, so did the writing fill my head with new smells of being alive and vibrant.
There has been one assignment, the Op Ed, which I most dearly engaged in. It was like a man I kissed more passionately than I had expected. And he tasted like wine, heady, full of good taste during the party, and leaving a headache next morning, but I had so much fun writing that the hangover tasted like honey, and by remembering the great ride, I was able to build up strength and walk straight again in the morning.
The results felt like headaches. They arrived on a regular basis, generally once a month, generally after getting to know that I was not selected for anything at all. They felt as if a blacksmith was pounding a railroad spike in my right ear. The medicine, once again, was writing, writing, writing.
Every time I reached the spotlight or the headlines I would feel like Mario, from the popular video game, when he reached a feather that allowed him to fly to the golden coin sky, to harvest the money in the smallest while. I could hear the music, the sound of coins falling inside my pocket, and I felt so good when my family cheered me by looking at my picture, they don’t read English, but were so happy for me that they jumped and hugged me and celebrated my deed with me. Thrilled as a kid with a new toy, I soared like an eagle and felt the warmth of family ties.
I’d like to tell you a little about my brain. It is an amazing organ, infinitely complex and mysterious, although at first glance it resembles nothing more than a large, soft, very wrinkled walnut. Yes, chuckle. It is that small. As the rest of all brains, it is more water than tissue (only one fourth of it is tissue). And the combination of being wrinkled and with little amount of tissue explains why I can describe it as looking like gray Jell-o. Imagine the poor thing: little, soft like jell-o and if you push your finger into the gray sponge it will adhere. No wonder it was hard for it to understand this new writing- for- open- audiences stuff. It was a bit hard for it to process.
So my writing may have sounded like I was playing for a heavy metal band whose music sounds like a lawn mower at full throttle falling through a plate-glass roof into a pile of aluminum pots and pans, but I can assure you: I have had the time of my life tracing my Chinese looking characters into the white dashboards of your reading brain areas.
I just described to you my journey, with ups and downs, with laughter and tears, my building of character after losing so many times and I must tell you that I am ready for winning this time. Like a tall straight tree, full of pink flowers in the middle of a luscious green forest, I stand, ready to go for it. I won’t kill my horse just because it is limping. I am still on the run.
So watch out dear comrades, here I come with my last assignment. I wish to dazzle you with my wits, my heart, my great wording. Wow. It’s coming soon. Be prepared. I have built enough character, now I shall win.