When my brother was a toddler, he spent about a year not talking. Let me clarify that. He could talk, he just chose not to. Now he’s a few years older than me so I didn’t actually experience this reign of silence but I have heard stories about it. One day, I finally asked him why he went without talking for so long. He told me quite simply that his little kid brain had become convinced people were only alloted a certain number of words in their life. Fearful he’d use them all up on useless things, he’d chosen to hoard them all for when they became absolutely necessary. I remember shaking my head at his silliness. Run out of words. Crazy kid. That couldn’t ever happen… could it?
These days, words have become essential to the life I want to live. They pave the road to my dreams (and hopefully my purpose). But as writing becomes less of a hobby than an intentional profession, I’ve started to worry that maybe Jay was right. What if there’s only so many thoughts and phrases we’re blessed with in this lifetime?
Clicks on an article are a writer’s version of a sky full of lighters to a singer. I watch in elation as the numbers climb on my stats with each new post here or an article for The Mode Life. But as more and more people read my words, I start to worry…
what if i’ve run out of things to say?
It has to be impossible. Right? I mean, my brain practically never shuts up and my mouth isn’t far behind. The sheer number of texts, emails and Facebook updates alone I’ve sent is staggering. How could I ever run out of topics and an opinion to follow? But as I sit down to write a new post, I feel my heart sinking.
i’ve… got… nothing.
Nothing at all to say. In defeat, I peruse my old Facebook status’. I see witty remarks and observations. Damn it! Why’d I use up all my inspiration on status updates? That was so dumb! Like a death row inmate picking a steak from Ponderosa instead of from Ruth’s Chris. Idiot! The cursor blinking at me from a blank post confirming it.
write… some… thing… new
I think in horror about those really old couples you see in restaurants. Chewing their food in silence. They don’t even bother looking at the person they’re sitting with. Why would they? They’ve got no new stories, no new adventures. Just the same old drivel they said the day before and the day before that. Will that become me someday?
I could try to stockpile my words. Use them more wisely. Stop wasting my jokes on people who have no sense of humor. Save my insight for those that can comprehend it. I might be asked to write something for an exorbitant amount of money someday and I’ll be seriously ticked if I already used up all my words. WAY more ticked than I am when I realize (too late) that someone used up all the toilet paper. So I should save them up, right? That’d be the smart thing to do.
Problem is I don’t know how. They tumble out of me, even when I know they shouldn’t.