Unsustainable Writing Goals and How to do More For People

I’ve considered quitting. This should buy me some time.

Living is hard. It gets overwhelming. At least, that’s how I’ve felt it from this end.

The past couple of weeks, I have come to the physical conclusion that it is super important to have a support system.

Invest in people, not in dreams: dreams turn to ashes without people — yours truly

You would not be reading this if my life partner didn’t cradle the pain in my eyes.

Find your people. If you can’t, find your person. We all need a person.

They don’t even have to be romantic partners. In 2018, you don’t have to be on the same continent.

There are emails and comments I re-read from people I may never meet; people who provide me with inner fortitude when the doubts reel in.

(I am thinking of you Joren, Shreya, and Shannon. )

I can’t work because I am not yet a permanent resident — I can’t get legal employment. I can’t move easily because I can’t drive, yet. My days are pretty…simple. I have a feeling winter will make all this worse.

I’ve not been able to get a sustainable schedule. I have a backlog of emails, updates from projects I care about and life as it happens — without warning, like my first snowfall, ever.

I haven’t felt much like myself lately.

Yesterday, someone I met through church had more faith in me than I did in myself. He offered to buy me tools so I can work for him.

Even though he knows I am a total newbie in this country and at the task he needs.

His investment in me, as a person, has bolstered my willingness to do more.

The past month, I’ve considered getting a regular job, going to school, and writing occasionally. The thought of leaving the creative life is one I thought I’d never have. Yet, I wasn’t surprised: writing is no longer an outlet for expression and belonging.

How is that even possible?

How can an activity that has become so much of who I am, suddenly mean so little?

Maybe I’ll find out how this happens. I’m not sure. But I’m certain that because I’ve found something more than creative expression, I now need to set my eyes on something more, something that truly matters to my current self.

I think it’s people. I think it’s ‘community’.

I can no longer do this because I can. There must be more to this than just what I want.

I need a new long-term purpose for my abilities; for my writing.

To be completely honest with you, I am adjusting to this new life. I have great support: friends and even strangers who welcome me and want to help.

But, I can no longer ignore the homesickness I am dealing with.

While in Cameroon, I wrote to share and to connect. It was my predominant goal, my pride.

I wrote because I could. Because my family eventually accepted that writing was something I was good at.

I wrote to be accepted.

Hey, I loved this thing you wrote about such and such. That was so me!

You’re really good at this. When is your book coming out?

Wow. I could never do that. You’re soo talented.

This is unsustainable.

I want to keep the feeling I had when he showed how much faith he had in me.

It was warm. Someone saw me. Someone believed in me. I could just…be.

I see this in many writers: they start by writing for themselves, or one person they care about. With time, they build this network of humans who care for the writing and for each other.

That’s what I want. That’s who I want to create for. For people. For others. For more than me.

I want to see others. And I want others to see me.

Like he saw me.

I was able to write this post while feeling like a complete mess of a creative.

If that isn’t a sign, I don’t know what is.

Written by

Cameroonian writer and video creator. Featured in LEVEL and P.S. I Love You. I write about building relationships and personal transformation.

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