Passion For Writing

It was a warm, early Monday morning as the summer air brushed my face, sitting next to the window on the big yellow school bus. The bus was far from quiet, as everyone was filled with joy, jumping out of their seats to begin the new school year. There is always something about that first day of school. You’re excited, yet somewhat nervous of what lies ahead. It’s an emotional roller-coaster where your anxiety begins to kick in with the uncertainty of what a new setting will be like. I didn’t know if I would like my teacher, or if she would like me for that matter, or if any of my friends would be in my class. Despite these questions running through my head, I knew deep down that despite my uncertainties, I had to keep an open mind. As a stepped out of of the bus and onto school grounds, my eyes wondered with curiosity in search of my new teacher. My shoulder hunched from the weight of my supplies in my new varsity red L.L. Bean backpack, I made my way up the stairs and began my adventure as a student of the second grade.

As we were all sitting down waiting in our chairs, our feet barely skimming the floor, a tall and slender woman with strawberry blonde hair walked in. She seemed very energetic which released some of the tension in the room. After your typical introductions and class overview, Miss Foster asked of our class to each write. Write, I thought? What the heck is that? She handed each of us a piece of white lined paper, telling us to write a story. I had known of stories from my grandmother reading them to me before bed, but I didn’t have any clue as to where I should start on this assignment. I sat there dazed and confused, experiencing the usual end to summer hangover. I wasn’t one to exploit my state of confusion to the class, so I kept my hand down and pretended to write. Miss Foster was no dummy and quickly caught on to my antics, coming up from behind, putting her wrinkly hand on my shoulders. She said in her soft voice,

“Do you need any help, Sam?”

“Yes”, I slowly whispered. I needed much more than help, I thought.

I sat up straight in my chair, grabbing my pencil as she leaned in to help guide me through this task. There was something about her patience and encouragement that made me feel that with her help, I could get the hang of this. She went on to describe to me what writing was in further detail. Like most things in life, we complicate them and make them harder than they actually are. As Miss Foster showed me, writing was more of a creative way to express one’s thoughts and feelings. Hey I thought, this is kind of fun. That’s when I began to gain an appreciation and excitement to write because I could paint a picture through my writing using my creative spirit. For my first assignment, I was to write about something of interest. Hockey had been a passion of mine since I could walk, so I focused on constructing an image that I could transform onto paper. I spent all but ten minutes creatively thinking, then jotting down whatever came to mind. I was fully absorbed into this moment.

My writing illustrated a dream that I had had, playing pond hockey with some of the games greatest players such as; Wayne Gretzky, Sidney Crosby and Alexander Ovechkin. Held in Alaska, this tournament featured numerous teams of great talent. Our team thrived as expected, winning all four games to get a shot at the championship. I was feeling pretty good heading in to the final game, being the top scorer in the tournament. Still, we had a job to complete and it was not going to be an easy task to defeat the other lone undefeated team — the Ice Hawks. Fast forward to a brisk night in Anchorage, Alaska for a 7PM puck drop on the pond for all the marbles. For the most part, the game was up and down, each team getting their chances. Good goaltending held us to three scoreless periods to force a sudden death overtime. Both teams exhausted, sweat dripping from our faces, as the cold air grew stronger. I knew I had it in me to finish off this game, I just knew. As the play broke out, I got the opportunity I had been waiting all night for. A quick fake to the right, cutting back to middle, I used the defender as a screen and exerted as much force as I could on my stick’s shaft. I looked on, as the puck tinged the inside of left post catching the corner of the net. It was in that moment that after the referee signaled it a “good goal”, everything seemed to go blank and quiet. I was fully immersed in that moment with my teammates. A moment where you don’t think, but are just in a “flow state” of mind, taking it in and enjoying it for what it is. Despite being just a dream, it’s stuck with me ever since I was a little kid, hoping to live it each time I come down the left side of the rink.

So, what did I think of this whole process of writing? I loved it, I really did. I enjoyed just being able to get lost in the moment of sharing my thoughts on a piece of paper. After finishing our stories in class, we were asked to share them with our classmates. It was pretty interesting to hear the different perspectives of my classmates and even get to know them a little bit more through their writing. Once I got home from school, I was excited and thrilled to tell my parents about my first writing experience. I think they were in somewhat of a disbelief because they knew I was never big into school. To see how enthusiastic I was about this newly discovered passion made them proud and happy for me. My Mom even went out and bought me a big pack of white lined paper. To say I was hooked was an understatement. Every day, I was excited to get back to school so I could write a new story in Miss Foster’s class. Each story was different. Sometimes I wrote about sports, sometimes about animals, and even imaginative characters and monsters. I became so in love with this writing thing, that my Mom was having to make constant trips to Staples for more white lined paper.

As the second grade wound down, I still continued to write daily. Through more and more practice, I began to write longer, descriptive stories. Though, as I got older, things began to change. As I moved on to high school, writing just didn’t seem to have the thrill that it did in Miss Foster’s class. It just didn’t seem as fun for me, anymore. I missed getting to unravel my creativity in short stories, where now the topics were strictly chosen by my teachers. I felt limited as a writer — writing on topics I just didn’t have any interest for. From what had been a passion of mine at a young age, I now seemed to dread. But, I think with having various topics assigned that didn’t quite seem to be of interest, it taught me to dig a little deeper and make sense of it by relating it to real life. By referencing it to the various aspects of my life that I consider most important, such as; family, friends, athletics and animals to name a few. By doing so, I could draw some interest from that subject and in writing it, it wouldn’t seem as a dull or boring.

While I don’t fully agree with having to write about topics that are not of interest because it limits our creative mind, I do feel that it is good to be open to other various topics and subjects. I wish we could just choose our own topic as we had done in Miss Foster’s class, but I understand that this isn’t second grade and I have to force myself to make the topics relatable to get the fullest out of my writing. With anything in life that is meaningful to you, you have got to love it no matter what. I believe I am a good writer, just sometimes refrained from truly expressing my thoughts because some topics seem so unrelatable. As I learned in Miss Foster’s class, you have to give everything a chance. As I continue to grow as a student and person, I hope with time I can find excitement in all types of writing, no matter the topic.