“You must write from life, from the depths of your soul!” –Professor Bhaër to Jo in Little Women (1994)
Words are my love language. Writing is my gift and super power. My healing words and light find their way to those who need them in divine timing.
I had no idea when I joined a writing class that I would make my fellow writers cry. My only agenda was to sharpen my technical skills, broaden my portfolio, and gain back confidence I lost. I also hoped to find my voice. No pressure. I dealt with Thursdays just hoping to survive Manila traffic and arrive before class starts. And also, to ease the knot inside me that can only be appeased whenever I give my very best and not embarass myself. In class, there were only six of us. I was one out of two millennials. The rest were women older and far more experienced and sophisticated than I could ever imagine to be, the center of it all being our mentor, Barbara Gonzalez-Ventura (mother of Panjee Gonzales, descendant of José Rizal through his older sister, Maria).
The theme was creative tension. I chose to compare and contrast using the keywords “look / see”. After struggling to hush my tears away and finish reading out loud my short piece about my complicated relationship with my mother, there was nothing but deafening silence. My mind immediately backtracked, looking for that something wrong that I did, and was more than ready for the painful critique to follow, until I realized there were tears on their faces too.
On graduation day and with beaming almost-motherly pride, Ms. Twee introduced me to her friend, “She’s the best writer in our class.” That was one of my proudest shining moments.
M told me after I read my piece to her and recounted the events of that day, “That’s the power of your words, Lea. You write with so much conviction, honesty, clarity, and feeling that they could not help but feel the weight of every word.”
I read my piece to Aly, and she cried too. We cried together–a bond forged stronger with mutual trust, respect, and shared vulnerability. We understood without needing a lot of words. When you open yourself up to someone who accepts you as you are and doesn’t judge whatever you’ve done, whatever you’ve written, whatever you felt, not even a hair on your head (and it’s mutual too)–that’s a rare and precious bond that lifts you up and fans your courage. Aly and M are the best friends I am so honored to journey with in life. They grow my soul too. I know they are so proud of me no matter what. I love them to bits.
I have no secrets. I just strive to do my best, always. I am open to co-creating with the Divine now more than ever. I love what I do and I do what I love. I write what I know from my heart and soul, and that has made all the difference. 💗