By Danielle Chelosky

     I wasn’t even halfway through high school when I definitively knew I wanted to be a writer. I told myself to focus on writing articles, poems, and short stories instead of doing my biology homework or studying for my geometry test. I was already setting priorities differently than others would because I knew what mattered to me meant more than getting good grades in subjects I couldn’t care less about.
 I walked around the halls wondering if I would ever get to feel like I actually belonged in high school, a world where most people only care about popularity and/or grades. I didn’t care about either. I cared about who I was and what I loved to do, isn’t that the point of life? High school just seemed like a disconnection from the real world. That wasn’t the one I wanted to be in either, but it was a step up from the hallways of school. I wanted to be in the world where people want to know you, where people explore and wonder and discover. High school is staying in one place with the same people. I could never stand that.
     Who was I? I was a writer. I didn’t want to be known as anything else. What’s so special about me? I asked myself everyday in elementary school when I looked at kids painting extraordinary art or kids playing sports. What can I do?
 Freshman year was when I harshly received my answer. I stayed up writing poems till 3 A.M. about a boy who loved me and then changed his mind. I realized who I was. I realized how much I feel. I realized how much I can do with the pain handed to me.
 I glorified, romanticized, and glamorized the idea of being a writer. Was it really as dreamy as I wished it would be? It meant I had fights with my friends because they didn’t take my writing seriously. It meant I was worried about the words I wrote when I was in a vulnerable part of my life. It meant I felt the need to keep everything to myself because I didn’t want people to look at me differently. It meant I prayed my writing wasn’t just average and that my friends and teachers weren’t lying to me when they said I was talented. It meant being questioned by my mom as to what’s so important about creative writing. It meant feeling alone and misunderstood even when I was surrounded by friends and teachers who supported me. I knew who I was. I knew what I loved. I knew why I was still alive. I knew where I belonged. I was a writer and I didn’t know how else to identify. Who was I without the intense feelings and the poetic mind? I was naked. Stripped of my purpose. I spent my time in class writing poems and stories on the side of my paper. I spent my time after school putting off my homework and working on articles instead. I spent all my free time writing because I knew if it was what I wanted to do, I was going to do it whenever I could. I was determined, I was content, I was happy.

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