Dear Mrs. Frouin,
(atleast I think that was your name.)
For as long as I can remember I’ve always wanted to be a writer. Actually, I don’t believe I wanted to be anything, especially when I was younger,
but writing chose me.
For you see,
I conditioned myself unable to verbally express my emotions, or my thoughts, since I was old enough to have them.
I know the words I want to say when I want to say them,
but I never felt anyone wanted to hear them.
I believed my constant analyzing and emotional dissection to be a burden.
I knew most people wouldn’t understand, if they even bothered to listen at all.
And so I taught myself to alter the disease of emotions, and the curse of memories into dressed up words.
I turned my pain into similes, allegories and metaphors,
whether hidden and veiled or transparently exposed.
My pen became my bestfriend
and paper evolved into a therapist.
It didn’t always do the trick, I admit.
Especially when I was fifteen, the year you taught me,
the year I tried my first pill
and found an alternate reality I could escape to where everything felt good, all the ******* time.
And that’s where you caught me.
It seems petty, immature and egotistical to still remember this fourteen years later,
but when someone attempts to crush the only aspiration you have,
the only thing you really have felt good at,
it tends to stick with you.
Especially considering I remember everything.
As per usual, I had shown up to your class ******,
there wasn’t many classes I showed up to sober.
There wasn’t many classes I showed up to in general.
I had zoned out during your lesson, probably doodling, talking,
sleeping, listening to music, writing or staring at some pretty girl.
Everyone had left and you asked me to stay behind, and as much as I was a professional **** up back then, that wasn’t common.
You sat across from me and asked me what I wanted to do with my life,
immediately I answered “I want to be a writer.”
We talked about fiction, journalism, poetry, song writing,
the things I “excelled” in according to you,
but with softness in your voice you stated,
“I believe you have the talent, but to be brutally honest, I think you lack the motivation to do it.”
I hear that sentence every two weeks or so.
It haunts me.
I can understand your reasoning,
as I said above, I was a professional **** up.
But you didn’t bother to talk to my media and film teacher,
who personally tracked me down one day when I was cutting class in the woods getting high with friends,
pulling me aside to beg me to start showing up to any class more often,
that I had missed 84 classes in one year, and that he personally,
intercepted to principal to discuss me and stuck his neck out for me,
“You are far too unique to not make your mark here.” he said.
You didn’t bother to check that even then, when I wasn’t attending 90% of my classes,
I was still on the honour roll for English, History and Math.
And that even after your words,
and even after more partying
and attempting to **** my brain cells
I came back that next year and stayed on the honour roll,
adding 16th Century History to the list as well.
But I do see your original point,
maybe I do lack the motivation to “do it.”
Whatever that might mean,
because like all things in life,
it’s all about perception
and personal expectation
You see, I can confidently say that
my writing has evolved,
and dare I say, at the risk of sounding pretentious and cocky,
it has gotten better.
And while I may not be getting paid a dime for any of it,
I have people reading my work,
for some reason,
and most importantly, I have people relating to my work,
experiencing it, and above all,
That’s all I’ve ever wanted to accomplish from writing;
it may have started as free, comfortable, liberating therapy, expression and self reflection,
but all I have ever wanted is to know I made someone, anyone,
That’s all everyone should aspire to accomplish,
an act that touches a person,
makes them feel less alone.
There’s nothing more noble in this world than helping another person,
no matter how you do it.
Whenever someone has tried to show positivity or support for my writing,
they make comparisons of being the next (insert famous female writer here)
and all I ever think is that I would rather be the first me.
Almost every artist wants to “famous,”
but I have always thought that I would rather be respected than famous.
Maybe one day I will be,
but maybe I won’t,
that really isn’t the point.
You believed that I lacked the motivation to become a writer,
but I always have been one.
My motivation is used everyday to get out of my warm bed,
where dreams are the only plane of existence where I feel peace and bliss.
My motivation is used to create something from everything negative,
instead of letting it beat me down
and turn me into the kind of person who would look at a
troubled teen with a glimpse of aspiration,
and tell them they couldn’t do it.
My motivation is used to support others and if I’m lucky enough,
guide them even half a step closer to the path they want to take.
Mrs. Frouin, if you read this,
and I doubt you will
because you probably don’t remember someone who you thought you read so well to make assumptions on their potential,
please laugh at the irony at the
fact that you failed me in your “creative writing” class
and I’m still a writer.
And maybe, if you’ve read this all the way through,
the student “lacking motivation”
just became your teacher.
Yes this happened, and it’s weird it still bothers me, but hopefully I got the mic drop here.